Honey-Citrus Marinated Asparagus

by Karin Calloway
Fresh, in-season asparagus is one of my favorite signs of spring. And, the season’s best asparagus is, to me, much tastier than the asparagus available in the off season. This dish combines fresh asparagus with a sweet and tangy citrus marinade for a salad course or side dish that sings of the season. Orange juice and zest, champagne vinegar, honey and olive oil make a lovely combination, and the vinaigrette is delicious served with mixed greens, too. Rice wine vinegar can stand in for the champagne vinegar if you don’t have time to stop by a gourmet shop.

Fresh, juicy navel oranges are approaching the end of their prime season, and they lend color and flavor to the salad. And, sliced red onion adds a real flavor spark here.

  • 2 pounds asparagus, trimmed
  • 1 orange, zested and juiced
  • 1/2 cup champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 navel orange cut into segments
  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
Blanch or steam asparagus until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Submerge asparagus into ice water to stop the cooking. When asparagus is cool, drain off the water, pat dry with paper towels, and set aside.

Combine orange zest and juice with vinegar, honey and olive oil in a large zip-top plastic bag. Squeeze bag to combine ingredients, taste and season with salt and pepper. Add asparagus, orange segments and red onion, seal bag tightly and refrigerate for several hours or over night. Place asparagus on a serving platter and drizzle with the marinade and arrange the orange segments and red onion on top.

Makes 12 servings. 
Honey-Citrus Marinated Asparagus

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