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Side Dishes

Asparagus with Lemon-Pecan Gremolata

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Asparagus with Lemon-Pecan Gremolata



1 pound asparagus stems

1 cup parsley leaves

12 basil leaves

3 cloves garlic

1/4 cup pecans

1/4 cup grated parmesan

2 small lemons, juice and zest

4 tablespoons olive oil, divided

salt and freshly ground black pepper



Trim two inches off the stems of the asparagus. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Have ready a bowl of ice water. Place the asparagus in the boiling water for 30 seconds to 1 minutes. When asparagus is still bright green and partially cooked through, remove it from the boiling water and immediately place in the ice water. When cool, remove from water and set aside to dry. This can be done a day in advance. On a cutting board, finely chop the parsley, basil, garlic and pecans until you have a fine, crumbly, consistency. Adding a small amount of salt while chopping will help with this process. Add the juice from half of a lemon, the zest from both lemons and the parmesan cheese. Continue to chop until all ingredients are combined. Place in a bowl and stir in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and lemon juice from half of a lemon. Sprinkle with a small amount of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Heat a large sauté pan over high heat. Add the remaining olive oil to the pan. Add the asparagus and sauté for about a minute. Squeeze the remaining lemon and its juice over the asparagus. Add a tablespoon of the gremolata and continue to sauté for another minute. The asparagus should be heated through and lightly charred. Remove to a serving plate and sprinkle more of the gremolata over the top. The gremolata is also good over grilled meats, pasta or as a spread on garlic bread.

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