3 navel oranges or tangelos 2 Tbsp orange juice 2 Tbsp lemon juice 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil ½ tsp flaky sea salt, or to taste 1 tsp orange blossom water 2 Tbsp shredded mint 8 spears very fresh purple asparagus (see Recipe Notes) Freshly ground black pepper to taste Small piece feta, optional
1 Peel oranges with a small serrated knife, removing all the pith, then slice in between the membrane and release the fillets of fruit; reserve the juice.
2 Whisk orange juice, lemon juice, oil, salt and orange blossom water together. It will be thin, but that’s as it should be (and it will make more dressing than what you need for the salad, but it is delicious poured over sliced ham or chicken, or roasted kumara). Add mint.
3 Wash, dry and trim asparagus then cut into thin slices on the diagonal. Arrange orange segments on plates and top with asparagus. Drizzle generously with dressing. Grind over pepper to taste. If liked, shave over a little feta. Serve immediately.
Yes, the asparagus is eaten raw, and it is awesome, deliciously sweet and crunchy but tender.
I used purple asparagus grown by Naked Harvest, a husband and wife team who tend a small farm on the banks of the Rangitikei River. This particular asparagus has had a make-over. It is high in antioxidants and contains more natural sugars than regular asparagus, and it’s more tender making it sweeter and not so vegetal to eat raw. Delicious. In short supply this year – go to [email protected] for more info and to order online.
This is a great plate for a slice of Christmas ham or chicken breast. For vegetarians, roasted kumara, baked red peppers with cannellini beans and basil … that sort of thing.