Quail egg and sprue asparagus salad

Serves 4
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Indy Lifestyle Online

The short asparagus season was a bit of a late starter this year and no sooner had it started than it's almost over. I always make an effort to avoid buying the Spanish asparagus for home consumption as it seems a shame not to use our home grown. Although to be perfectly honest, this time round, I almost forgot to buy our great English asparagus because I've been eating a lot of delicious wild sea kale. And it's free. You're unlikely to find it in a greengrocer, but if you're on a beach, look out for the plants that look like sprouting broccoli.

The short asparagus season was a bit of a late starter this year and no sooner had it started than it's almost over. I always make an effort to avoid buying the Spanish asparagus for home consumption as it seems a shame not to use our home grown. Although to be perfectly honest, this time round, I almost forgot to buy our great English asparagus because I've been eating a lot of delicious wild sea kale. And it's free. You're unlikely to find it in a greengrocer, but if you're on a beach, look out for the plants that look like sprouting broccoli.

12 quails' eggs
250g thin, sprue asparagus, woody stalks trimmed
50g small salad leaves like land cress, rocket, lambs lettuce, baby spinach or small celery leaves
Celery salt

for the dressing

1tbsp good quality white wine vinegar, such as Chardonnay
1tbsp vegetable oil
2tbsp olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Bring 2 pans of water to the boil, one salted for the asparagus and one for the quails' eggs. Carefully lower the eggs into the water and simmer gently for 2 minutes then run under the cold tap until they are cool. The yolk should be a little runny, so peel them carefully.

Cook the asparagus for 2-3 minutes until tender then refresh under cold water. Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Dress the leaves and asparagus, season and arrange on plates with the quails' eggs and sprinkle with celery salt.

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