Watercress and white asparagus salad with watercress dressing

Serves 2
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This is a dish that makes the most of watercress and white asparagus. The amounts given make quite generous servings.

This is a dish that makes the most of watercress and white asparagus. The amounts given make quite generous servings.

2 bunches watercress
5 spears white asparagus
milk
1 udo
Watercress dressing:
2 teaspoons sea salt
Half a tablespoon freshly ground black pepper, coarsely ground
100ml rice vinegar
3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon grapeseed oil
black sesame seeds

1) Chop the watercress and separate into thick stalks and thinner stalks with leaves. Briefly blanch the thick stalks which will be used for the watercress dressing in a pan of boiling water. Refresh in iced water and drain.

2) Peel off the hard fibres from the asparagus spears, then put them in simmering milk, turn off the heat and leave them to cool in the milk for about 10 minutes. Briefly put them in iced water. Drain them and pat dry with paper towel. Cut the asparagus spears into bite-sized lengths.

3) Peel the udo into a thin unbroken strip, cut the strip at an oblique angle, wind the strips around a rod and place them in iced water to make udo curls.

4) Make the Watercress Dressing: combine two ounces (60g) of the blanched thick watercress stalks with the rest of the dressing ingredients in a mixer.

5) Arrange the white asparagus and the udo curls on a serving dish and heap the thin watercress stalks and leaves on the asparagus. Taking account of the colour combination, pour the dressing where it would look most attractive. Serve with black sesame seeds sprinkled over the watercress.

NOBU'S NOTE: An important feature of white asparagus is its crunchy texture, so make sure that it is not cooked too long in the milk..

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