I am a big fan of asparagus and lemon – especially asparagus slathered with lemony Hollandaise sauce. However, the holiday table is filled with so many rich and delicious dishes, I thought it would be nice to have a simple side that is still full of flavor, but without being so rich (read: so many calories). :-)
Grilled Asparagus with Lemon Zest and Manchego Cheese
2 bunches asparagus
1 tablespoon olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Freshly shaved Manchego, Grana Padano, or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Grill grid (optional)
Trim or snap the ends off the asparagus. Place on a baking sheet and set aside. Remove the zest from the lemon with a citrus zester (preferably the kind that makes long pretty strands of lemon). Finely chop half of the zest and reserve the other half for garnish. Sprinkle the finely chopped zest over the asparagus and then drizzle with the olive oil and season to your taste with salt and pepper. Toss together to make sure the asparagus is coated.
Preheat grill (and grill grid) to medium heat. When the grill is hot, add the asparagus and cook for 6 to 10 minutes, turning frequently. Time will depend on the size of the asparagus and the heat of the grill. Remove to a serving platter toss with remaining zest and nice shavings of cheese.
Cheers and Happy Grilling!