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Asparagus and Avocado Salad

ingredients

serves 4.
1 lb (500 g) asparagus spears
1 ripe avocado
4 teaspoons chopped pistachio nuts or walnuts
fennel sprigs and orange segments, to garnish

for the marinade

125 ml (4 fl oz) 1/2 cup walnut oil
6 teaspoons freshly squeezed orange juice
2 teaspoons grated orange peel
2 teaspoons light soft brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
6 teaspoons chopped fresh fennel

method

1. Trim asparagus spears and, using a sharp knife, peel outside skin off each stem.

2. Cook asparagus in large shallow saucepan of boiling salted water for 5-8 minutes, until tender. Drain and cool.

3. To make marinade, mix oil, orange juice, peel, sugar, salt, pepper, mustard and fennel together, stirring until well blended.

4. Place asparagus spears in a shallow dish, pour over marinade and turn each spear in marinade to coat evenly.

5. Cover with plastic wrap and leave in a cool place for 1 hour or until ready to serve.

6. Lift out asparagus and arrange on 4 individual serving plates.

7. Peel and dice avocado and add to marinade with pistachios or walnuts, turning gently.

8. Spoon avocado and nut mixture over centres of asparagus spears and garnish with sprigs of fennel and orange segments.

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