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Alta Editions is an award-winning publisher of web-based cookbooks. We publish stories and exclusive recipes from some of the world's most inspiring chefs.

Spring Asparagus Salad with Comte Cheese Foam

Chef Laurent Gras Recipes

Spring Asparagus Salad with Comte Cheese Foam

Alta Editions

The crunchiness and natural sweetness of just-cooked asparagus is enhanced with the piquancy of mustard vinaigrette and the strong, earthy character of aged Comte, a cow’s milk cheese from eastern France.
— Laurent Gras

This Provence-inspired Spring Asparagus Salad with Comte Cheese Foam recipe is a preview from chef Laurent Gras's multiple IACP award-winning cookbook, My Provence.

4 servings   |   Prep Time: 40 minutes   |   Cooking Time: 20 minutes

 

Ingredients

For the Mustard Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) red wine vinegar
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons (50 g) Dijon mustard
  • ½ cup (100 g) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium (30 g) shallot, peeled and finely chopped

For the Comte Emulsion

  • 1 sheet (2.5 g) gelatin
  • 1 cup (200 ml) heavy cream
  • 2 ounces (60 g) Comté or aged Gruyère

For the Cooked Asparagus

  • 16 to 24 stalks of green asparagus, 4 to 6 pieces per serving, depending on size
  • Sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¾ cup (200 ml) water
  • 2 tablespoons (30 g) unsalted butter

For the Asparagus Salad

  • 4 jumbo green asparagus
  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  • Sea salt

Method

For the Mustard Vinaigrettes

  1. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the vinegar with a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper until the salt is dissolved . Whisk in the mustard. While still whisking, slowly drizzle in the olive oil to create an emulsion. Add the shallot and taste the vinaigrette to adjust the seasoning.

For the Comte Emulsion

  1. Soak the gelatin in cold water for 5 minutes or so to swell. Place the cream in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat. Using a rubber spatula, incorporate the cheese into the cream. Keep simmering over low heat for about 5 minutes. Squeeze the gelatin sheet to remove excess water and add to the melted cheese mixture. The mixture should have the consistency of pancake batter. Pour into the iSi canister . Close and charge with both cartridges. Shake to help emulsify the contents. Keep warm until ready to serve. [See video technique.] If you do not have a canister you can drizzle the warm cheese sauce around the plate.

For the Cooked Asparagus

  1. Rinse the asparagus under running water and pat dry. Snap the bottom of the asparagus where the stalks break naturally, keeping only the top portion. Reserve the bottoms for another use. On a cutting board, line up the tips and trim the opposite ends to an even length. With a vegetable peeler, peel the stems halfway to the top. Season the asparagus with sea salt. In a medium sauté pan set over medium-high heat, add the olive oil. Add the asparagus to the hot oil and sauté for a few minutes to coat with the oil. Pour the water over the asparagus, add the butter, and braise over the same high heat, tossing the pan occasionally to glaze the asparagus evenly.

For the Asparagus Salad

  1. Rinse the asparagus under running water and pat dry. Snap the bottom of the asparagus where the stalks break naturally, keeping only the top portion. Reserve the bottoms for another use. On a cutting board, line up the tips and trim the opposite ends to an even length. With a vegetable peeler, peel the stems halfway to the top. Using a mandolin, thinly slice them lengthwise. Place the slices on a plate and season with the olive oil and salt.

To Assemble the Dish

Divide the cooked asparagus evenly among the serving plates and line them up side by side, to resemble a raft. Drizzle with the mustard vinaigrette. Place the sliced raw asparagus on top. If using the iSi canister, squeeze the cheese foam around the plate. Otherwise, distribute several spoonfuls of the sauce on the asparagus just before serving.


Get this recipe and over 40 other delicious Provence-inspired dishes in Laurent Gras: My Provence, the award-winning online cookbook from renowned chef Laurent Gras, for FREE (a $9.99 value!) when you sign up for the Alta Editions Cooking Series. Get It Now button