Asparagus with parsley pesto and prosciutto

Asparagus with parsley pesto and prosciutto


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A simple entree with a twist on traditional pesto. Note: The salsa can be made ahead. It keeps well overnight or even 2-3 days ahead. Walnut oil lasts only about one month once opened.


Serves: 8 

  • 6-8 asparagus spears per person
  • olive oil
  • 8 slices of prosciutto
  • sea salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • Parmesan shavings (extra, to assemble)
  • Parsley and Walnut Salsa
  • Large bunch of clean flat-leaf parsley (about 140-160 grams)
  • 2-3 large garlic cloves, smashed
  • 100 grams walnuts, chopped
  • finely grated rind and juice of an unwaxed lemon (more is better)
  • 30 grams Parmesan cheese, shaved into slivers
  • 6 tablespoons walnut oil
  • 4 tablespoons groundnut or sunflower oil

Preparation:15min  ›  Cook:5min  ›  Ready in:20min 

  1. First, make the salsa: Put the parsley, garlic, walnuts, lemon zest and juice into the bowl of a food processor. Whizz until coarsely chopped.
  2. Add half the Parmesan to the bowl. Blend again. With the motor still running, trickle in the oils. Stop blending while it’s still a coarse-looking purée. Adjust the seasoning. Cover and chill.
  3. Place the asparagus in boiling water and season with a little salt. Simmer for 3-5 minutes until al dente, and drain well.
  4. To assemble: place the prosciutto on each plate. Place the asparagus on top with the tips sticking out. Drizzle or brush the spears generously with olive oil, season, and fold over the prosciutto to cover the asparagus.
  5. Spoon a dollop of salsa on top and scatter parmesan shavings over each portion.

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