Spring Asparagus Salad with Sourdough Croutons

By Tom Mitchell-Dawson

Spring is a great time for salads, the vibrant green vegetables that come into season can be used in a variety of ways to make some glorious-tasting salads. The one we are making today uses asparagus cooked in two ways, giving a difference in taste and texture. Its dressing is super simple and classic and is great as a go-to when making a variety of salads.

What makes the salad so moreish though are the salty, crispy croutons that top it. The trick is to thinly slice the bread to create little shards that look so elegant atop the greens of the salad.

Cooking & prepping time: 30mins

Serves: 2-4 as a side dish


  • 1 bunch asparagus (10 stalks)
  •  3 radishes
  • 1 handful of rocket, washed
  • 1/4 cucumber
  • Few picked soft herbs, we used mint and parsley
  • 1 shallot 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 juice of lemon + zest 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 very thinly sliced slices of sourdough


  1. To begin, preheat the oven to 200c. Place the bread on a baking tray with a liberal amount of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper then place in the oven for 15 minutes or until crisps up and golden brown all over. When the bread is finished take it off the tray and break it up into odd shaped shards ready for serving.
  2. Take half of the asparagus and thinly shave with a peeler then place in a bowl of cold water. Snap off the woody ends of the rest of the asparagus and cut on a diagonal before blanching in boiling water for 2 minutes. Drain then refresh in cold water.
  3. Cut the cucumber in half lengthways, remove the seeds with a teaspoon then thinly slice. Thinly slice the radish then add to a big bowl along with the rocket, cucumber, asparagus and herbs.
  4. To make the dressing, finely dice the shallot and add to a small bowl along with the vinegar, lemon juice, lemon zest, olive oil and a good crack of salt and pepper. Toss the dressing through the salad then finish with the sourdough croutons.


We can often overlook how the shape we prep our vegetables can affect the final taste of the dish. Note the difference in how the peeled asparagus and cut asparagus taste. With this in mind try different cuts on the other vegetables, thin sticks (julienne), fine dice, cut into random chunks, it all makes a difference to how we taste the food and can wildly change how we feel about a dish.

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