The blend of crunchy, tender and creamy ingredients in this salad is ideal served alongside a vegetable soup for dinner on an autumn evening.
INGREDIENTS (serves 4 as side dish) 400 grammes green asparagus (1 bunch) 200 grammes radishes (1 bunch) 250 grammes avocado (1 large avocado) 200 grammes cucumber (1 medium cucumber)
3 tbsp walnut oil (or any other cold pressed oil of your choice) 2 tbsp lemon juice 2 tsp maple 1/4 tsp salt small pinch cayenne powder pinch of *sumac for garnish (optional)
*Sumac comes from the berries of a wild bush that grows wild in all Mediterranean areas, especially in Sicily and southern Italy, and parts of the Middle East, notably Iran. It is an essential ingredient in Arabic cooking, being preferred to lemon for sourness and astringency. Source: the epicentre
PREPARATION Put water to boil in a steamer (I use a regular saucepan with a fitting colander and cover it with a lid). Discard the bottoms of the asparagus and place them in the steamer for 5 minutes or until tender but still retaining their vibrant green colour. When ready, set aside and leave to cool.
Meanwhile cut the tops off of the radishes, wash them thoroughly to get rid of any dirt and slice them in quarters lengthways. Throw them into a salad bowl. Next, slice the cucumbers into batons and add them to the radishes. Finally, slice the avocado in half, discard the stone and cut the insides with a knife into quarters lengthways. Scoop the flesh with a spoon and add to the radishes and cucumber. When the asparagus have cooled down a little, slice them lengthways in half and add them to the salad bowl.
For the dressing simply mix the oil, lemon juice, maple syrup, salt and cayenne powder in a small bowl or glass with a spoon or hand whisk till combined. Add to the salad ingredients, toss, adjust seasoning to taste, garnish with a pinch of sumac and serve.