In a Pretty Pickle | Asparagus, Egg and Anchovy Pesto Salad

In a Pretty Pickle

Chef John Welch | Avenue5

Green and white asparagus tossed in a Champagne vinaigrette, with egg, anchovy pesto and julienned pickled vegetables, including red onions, carrots and red bell peppers.

Photography by Vanessa Rogers


Avenue5 - Chef John Wlech shares his recipe for Asparagus, Egg & Anchovy Pesto SaladAsparagus, Egg & Anchovy Pesto Salad

For one salad:

  • 3 green asparagus, blanched and shocked in ice water
  • 3 white asparagus, blanched and shocked in ice water
  • 1 egg, boiled for 8 minutes and shocked in ice water


To compose salad, plate by tossing asparagus in champagne vinaigrette (see recipe below).

Shell egg and slice in half. Plate as shown in picture with pickled vegetables (recipe below) and anchovy pesto (recipe below).


Pickled Vegetables

  • 1/4 cup, red onion, cut into julienne strips
  • 1/2 cup, cucumbers, cut into julienne strips                           
  • 1/2 cup, carrots, cut into julienne strips                                 
  • 1/4 cup, Red bell pepper, cut into julienne strips                               
  • 1/4 cup, Pearl onions                          
  • 2 cups, White wine vinegar                           
  • 2 Tbsp Mustard seed                                               
  • 1/4 cup, Garlic, minced                        
  • 1 Tbsp, Peppercorns                                    
  • 1 cup, Sugar                          
  • 2 Tbsp, Salt                                       
  • 2 Tbsp, Thyme chopped      


Simmer vinegar sugar and salt together until sugar dissolves.  Pour hot liquid over remaining ingredients and chill. Yields 2 cups; serves 8.


Anchovy Pesto

Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add 1/2 cup of the oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Season with salt and pepper.  If using immediately, add all the remaining oil and pulse until smooth. Transfer the pesto to a large serving bowl and mix in the cheese, combine with chopped white anchovies.


Champagne vinaigrette

  • 1 cup, canola oil                                 
  • 1 tbsp, blended olive oil                     
  • 2 tbsp, minced garlic              
  • 1/2 cup, Champagne vinegar                           
  • 1 tbsp, tarragon                                  
  • 2 tsp, honey                           
  • 2 tbsp, dijon mustard                         
  • 1 tsp, whole grain mustard                                        
  • 1 tbsp, diced shallots                         
  • Salt and pepper to taste                                                                                 


Combine all ingredients together excluding ½ vinegar, gradually add the oil making a strong emulsion, alternating between the vinegar and the oil.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.



For more springtime salads, click here.


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