Update your Jewish culinary repertoire with Feasting, a new collection of recipes from the culinary mind behind Melbourne, Australia’s Cooper and Milla’s and Miss Ruben. Let the traditional ingredients and techniques guide you, but keep everything fresh and modern, like this elegant asparagus with challah croutons.
Transform your left-over challah – traditional Friday night bread – into croutons for this stylish salad featuring plump, juicy asparagus. Duck eggs have a bigger, richer yolk than chicken eggs so the flavor goes nicely with the mildness of the cheese. If you can’t find ricotta salata, pecorino would work just as well.
- 2 pounds 3 ounces green asparagus, trimmed
- 5 1/2 ounces salted ricotta or percorino, finely grated
- 4 duck eggs
- 4-5 thick slices challah, crusts removed
- sea salt, to taste
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon superfine sugar
- Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
For the asparagus
Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil and briefly blanch the asparagus for 1–2 minutes. Immediately transfer to a bowl of ice water.
To make the lemon vinaigrette, whisk all of the ingredients together in a small bowl.
Preheat the oven to 320ºF.
Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil. Put the eggs in the pan and boil for 12 minutes. Drain the eggs and refresh in cold water, then peel. Allow the eggs to cool, then grate them with a coarse grater.
Chop the challah slices into ½ inch cubes. Lay them on a baking tray lined with baking paper and toast in the oven for about 10 minutes, until golden brown. Watch them carefully because they will burn easily. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
To serve, drain the asparagus, season with salt and pepper and dress with the vinaigrette.
Lay half the asparagus on a platter and top with half the grated ricotta, croutons and egg. Top with the remaining asparagus, and then the remaining ricotta, croutons and egg.