Simple Grilled Asparagus is a quick and flavorful side dish enhanced by the addition of a simple, yet tasty, Italian gremolata.
I adore asparagus! Steamed is nice, but grilling it brings out extra flavor. And it is easy to toss it on the grill for Easter dinner while your Grilled Leg of Lamb is resting.
Young thin asparagus is wonderfully tender in early spring. Sometimes later in the season and with thicker asparagus spears the ends become tough.
Lightly peel the tough ends, if any, for this recipe.
Substitutions for Grilled Asparagus
You do not have to use skewers for this if you don't have them or want to use them. Cover the grill a section of the grill with foil or use a grilling tray like this to keep them from sliding between grates.
The gremolata uses preserved lemon for extra lemony taste. It takes a few days to preserve lemons, but it is so easy to do, and I have a few recipes on the blog that make use of them. You can use to use fresh lemon and lemon zest as a substitute
Fresh Spring Sides #OurFamilyTable
Make use of seasonal spring produce to make these marvelous Spring Side Dishes to complement your nightly dinner or special holiday.
- 1 pound fresh asparagus (trimmed)
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 clove garlic (minced)
- 1 ½ teaspoons fresh oregano leaves (or ½ teaspoon dried)
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest (grated)
- black pepper (to taste)
- 2 whole lemons (cut in half)
- shaved Parmesan cheese (to serve (optional))
- ¼ cups fresh parsley leaves (washed, dried thoroughly, and finely chopped)
- 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons preserved lemon rind (rinsed and finely chopped)
- 1 large clove garlic (grated)
- salt and pepper (to taste)
- Place asparagus in a wide, shallow bowl and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Add sea salt, garlic, oregano and lemon zest. Add black pepper, to taste. Gently toss to combine and marinate for 15-20 minutes.
- Place 6 or 8 inch bamboo skewers in a glass off warm water to soak.
- Combine gremolata ingredients in a small bowl. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste, and set aside.
- Spray grill grates with non-stick cooking spray and preheat grill to medium-high.
- Use the presoaked bamboo skewers to pierce asparagus pieces on batches of 4-5 a few inches apart in the middle to make it easier to flip and prevent from slipping between the grates.
- Place asparagus and lemon halves over direct heat and grill for 3-4 minutes per side, or until they are crisp tender.
- Remove from heat and transfer to a serving dish. Top with gremolata and serve immediately with grilled lemons for squeezing and shaved Parmesan cheese, if desired.