Warm Asparagus Salad with Toasted Walnut Aioli Dressing

Warm Asparagus Salad with Toasted Walnut Aioli Dressing

It doesn’t get much better than this!


  • 1/2 cup California walnut halves
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons regular extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup canola, vegetable, corn or safflower oil
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, mashed to a paste
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons lemon juice or to taste
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 - 1/2 cup warm water
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/4 pounds asparagus
  • Lemon wedges as a garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Toast the walnut halves on a baking sheet until fragrant and lightly golden, about 7 minutes. Let cool. Place the walnuts in the blender and pulse until finely chopped.
  2. Combine 1/2 cup of the olive oil and the canola oil in a liquid measuring cup. In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk and 1 tablespoon of the combined oils together until an emulsion is formed. Drop by drop, add the oil to the emulsion, whisking constantly until all of the oil has been added. Do not add the oil too quickly and be sure that the emulsion is homogeneous before adding more oil. Add the garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Add the walnuts and enough water to make a sauce that is almost pourable - about the consistency of thick heavy cream.
  3. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil. With a slotted spoon, lower the eggs, one at a time, into the boiling water. Reduce the heat to medium and cook the eggs for 8 minutes. Meanwhile, place ice cubes, water, and eggs in a large bowl. After 8 minutes, remove the eggs. When they are cool, remove them, crack them and return them to the ice water for 5 minutes. Peel the eggs and cut into quarters.
  4. Ten minutes before serving, place the asparagus on a baking sheet and drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Roll the asparagus to coat with oil and place in a single layer. Cook until tender but still bright green, 7 to 8 minutes.
  5. Place the asparagus on a platter and drizzle with the walnut allioli. Garnish with the eggs and lemon wedges.


You can either roast the asparagus in the oven or grill it with equally delicious results. And when it gets to the allioli, nothing beats homemade. If you have any leftover, it would be great on a fresh grilled tuna burger.


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