Saturday, 6 October 2012

Roasted Asparagus, Red Pepper and Feta Cheese Salad

 Roasted Asparagus, Red Pepper and Feta Cheese salad

I have been hanging out for fresh asparagus, and finally Spring has arrived and it's here. This recipe can either be a  vegetarian main or a side salad  It makes a large quantity so can easily be halved.

Asparagus does not like to wait around in the vegie bin for too long. I buy it fresh and use it on the same day.

I chop the woody ends off with a knife rather than break them off . And just to make sure that all of the asparagus will be tender when cooked I also peel the bottom parts thinly with a potato peeler, especially if the stalks are large.

Bowties pasta are decorative, remind me of butterflies, and look good in this salad, but  pasta spirals would do just as well here.

This salad tastes nicest while still warm but any leftovers will keep for another meal. In this case let it come back to room temperature before serving.

While the vegetables are roasting prepare the dressing


Whisk together:
1/4 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup of olive oil
1 teaspoon of finely grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon of dijon mustard
1 teaspoon of honey
salt and pepper to taste

Salad Ingredients:

A packet of bowties pasta ( 500 gm)
2 bunches of asparagus ( about 250 gm each) cut into short lengths
2 large red peppers  ( chopped)
4 spring onions ( finely sliced)
4 tbsp of olive oil
2 cloves of garlic
350 gm of feta cheese ( cubed)
slivers of basil leaves  ( optional)


Peel and chop the garlic very finely or smash it with the back of a knofe and combine with the olive oil.
Toss the sparagus and pepper in the olive oil mixture and roast them in a moderately high oven ( 200 degrees) for 15-20 minutes stirring from time to time s unto the vegetables are tender and have browned lightly.

While the vegetables are roasting boil the pasta in salted water until the al dente stage.This will take about 12 minutes. ( start to check after 10)

Put the pasta in a large heatproof bowl.
Stir the dressing through
Add the roasted asparagus and peppers and stir well.
Add the spring onions and the feta and give the salad a good toss.

Serve warm in bowls . Garnish with slivers of basil leaves if you wish.


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