Grilled Asparagus with Sauce Gribiche

Grilled Asparagus with Sauce Gribiche
4 servings

This is a great vegetable side dish or as a first course, particularly when you are making dinner on the grill. If the asparagus spears are not too thick you can marinate with olive oil and season before grilling, skipping the blanching step. The sauce can be made several hours ahead. Use as a dressing for any spring vegetables, including carrots, leeks or artichokes.

20 blanched asparagus spears (if spears are thin enough, blanching is optional).
Toss lightly with extra virgin olive oil, and sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. Just before serving, shake off the excess marinade and grill until tender on a BBQ or stove-top grill pan.

Sauce Gribiche
4 tablespoons capers, drained and dried
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 shallot or large green onion, minced
1 tablespoon parsley, minced
1 tablespoon chives or tarragon, minced
1 egg, soft boiled for 3 minutes, cooled then scooped out of the shell
Zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 1 lemon (about 1/4 cup)
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons cornichons, minced (optional)

Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a sauté pan. When hot, add capers and allow to bloom and crisp. Drain on paper towels and set aside. This can be done several hours ahead.

Mix the lemon juice, zest, salt and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil. Add the shallots, parsley, and chives. Using the back of a fork, smash the egg into the dressing, mixing well. Add cornichons (optional).

For plating, I like to arrange the asparagus spears like a wheat sheaf. Drizzle the asparagus with the sauce and sprinkle with the crispy capers.