One of the most frequent questions that I get asked is what is an ingredient never to be without and the answer is lemons! They add just the right balance of flavor for so many dishes like the asparagus salad with lemon dressing below. Besides regular lemons, look for Meyer lemons, a small hybrid lemon developed by a guy named Frank Meyer. Meyer lemons are a cross between lemons and mandarin oranges. They have smooth skin, a thin rind and are deep yellow but the flavor is sweeter and not as acidic as regular lemons and the pulp is pale orange in color. Meyer lemons are in season between May and December.
Asparagus Salad with Lemon Dressing
3 tablespoons lemon juice plus the zest
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons sweet grainy mustard
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup minced mild onion like spring onions or shallots
Salt and pepper to taste
Steam or boil 1 pound trimmed asparagus; drain and place on a platter. Make the dressing by placing all the ingredients in a jar and shake well. Pour over asparagus; cover and marinate at room temperature several hours before serving.