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Dinner Tonight: Shaved Asparagus, Pea, and Prosciutto Salad

[Photograph: Blake Royer]

When it's asparagus season, I gobble it up almost daily, with little regard for balance. Like corn, asparagus is one of those vegetables that seems to deteriorate more quickly than others, the sweetness turning starchy and the texture turning woody soon after it's snapped out of the ground. Which makes it even more imperative to eat it fresh and local, when the season is here. This year I've had it roasted, grilled, steamed, and boiled—but raw asparagus, in this salad recipe from Epicurious, is something I hadn't tried.

In this salad, it's shaved into long strips (I used a vegetable peeler) and layered with fresh greens and blanched peas in a shallot-y dressing scattered with mint leaves. Asparagus and prosciutto pair wonderfully—often with the spears wrapped in prosciutto then grilled or roasted—and it works in this salad, too. A simple, filling salad for one of these warm nights that remind us summer has just about arrived.

Note: Thawed frozen peas can be used in place of fresh. If using frozen peas, thaw and skip step 1.

About the author: Blake Royer founded The Paupered Chef with Nick Kindelsperger, where he writes about food and occasional travels. After a year in Estonia, he's now living in Chicago.

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