This grilled marinated asparagus is a quick and easy side dish enhanced by the addition of a simple, yet tasty, Italian gremolata.
Traditionally, gremolata consists of just three ingredients – fresh parsley, garlic, and lemon zest – and is often used to top meat, poultry, and seafood. Here, a bit of preserved lemon rind is added for an additional pop of flavor.
TIP: For easier turning (and to prevent asparagus from falling through the grill grates), thread two pre-soaked wooden skewers through several spears lined up side by side to hold them together.
Grilling Without a Grill
If you don’t have a grill, or the time to fire it up, you can use this great cast iron grill pan for stovetop grilling. We use ours a lot for anything from burgers to grilled veggies and it works great!
- 1 lb. fresh asparagus, trimmed
- 1 T. extra virgin olive oil
- 1 T. balsamic vinegar
- 1½ t. Mediterranean-spiced sea salt
- Black pepper, to taste
- 2 whole lemons, cut in half
- Shaved Parmesan cheese, to serve (optional)
- ¼ c. fresh parsley leaves, washed, dried thoroughly, and finely chopped
- 1 t. organic lemon zest
- 2 t. preserved lemon rind, rinsed and finely chopped
- 1 large clove garlic, grated
- Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
1. Place asparagus in a wide, shallow bowl and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Season with Mediterranean-spiced sea salt and black pepper, to taste. Gently toss to combine and set aside for 15-20 minutes to marinade.
2. Prepare the gremolata by combining all ingredients is a small bowl. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste, and set aside.
3. Spray grill grates with non-stick cooking spray and preheat grill to medium-high. Place asparagus and lemon halves over direct heat and grill for 3-4 minutes per side, or until they are crisp tender.
4. Remove from heat and transfer to a serving dish. Top with gremolata and serve immediately with grilled lemons for squeezing and shaved Parmesan cheese, if desired.