Asparagus Salad with Quail Eggs; asparagus season

I love quail eggs.

They are so cute and perfectly bite-size.

If only they weren’t so challenging to work with.

The shells are harder than chicken egg shells and the interior membrane thicker. They are tiny but one has to make more of an effort to crack them to use fresh or to peel them if hard-cooked.

Still…. they are cute. And I have a tiny frying pan that just holds 3 of them.

I crack the eggs  and put them into 2 small bowls, 3 eggs each, to make frying them easier. They’ll be ready to slide into the hot pan.

You can, of course, just use one chicken egg each.

Happy spring!

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Asparagus Salad with Quail Eggs

Early asparagus dipped in soft eggs – Spring!

  • Author: Katie Zeller
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: First Course

Ingredients

Scale
  • 6oz (180gr) asparagus, 12 thin or 8 large spears, trimmed
  • 6 quail eggs 
  • 2 tsp olive oil or butter
  • Vinaigrette:
  • 1 tsp Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 tbs tarragon wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp fresh tarragon  or 1/2 tsp dried
  • 3 tbs good olive oil

Instructions

  • Put asparagus into a skillet big enough to hold them without cutting, add water to cover bottom by 1/4 inch, cover and bring to boil.
  • Lower heat and cook just until done, 6 – 10 minutes, adding a bit of water if needed.
  • Remove and keep warm.
  • Heat oil or butter in skillet over medium heat.
  • Add eggs and fry until the whites are set.  They are meant to be ‘sunny-side up’ – which is: whites set, yolks runny….. or cook them however you like them.
  • Arrange asparagus on 2 plates
  • Drizzle a bit of vinaigrette on top.
  • Put three quail eggs on the other half of the plate.
  • Salt & pepper eggs if you like and serve, any remaining vinaigrette on the side.
  • Vinaigrette:
  • Whisk mustard and vinegar.
  • Slowly drizzle in oil, whisking constantly.
  • Add tarragon, whisk well.

Notes

Substitute 2 chicken eggs for the 6 quail eggs

Keywords: asparagus, eggs

Asparagus Salad with Quail Eggs

Asparagus season has been a bust here.

I’m blaming it on having an unseasonably warm March. We went from winter to summer overnight (or so it seemed), then back to winter and now we have spring.

The strange weather appears to have disrupted asparagus season.

We are not happy.

Last year there were mounds of green and white and purple asparagus in all the markets for 5 or 6 weeks.

We prefer green, and were actually eating so much of it that we were happy to see the season end.

This year I bought the first green asparagus 3 weeks ago, which is very early. There was just a small section of green and a slightly bigger section of white.

The next week there were just a handful of green spears and the following week none at all.

Normally, I go to one market on Fri. to buy enough for the weekend, Mon mari goes to the local market Mon. morning to get more.

The green is gone. I didn’t see any purple at all.

Even the white asparagus is not as prolific as other years.

We’ll content ourselves with white asparagus for the remainder of the season, such as it is.

Now that I know how to cook white asparagus we are happy with it, but the green is so much easier.

The artichokes, on the other hand, have been great! We’ve been eating them every week for over a month.

Spring is an exciting and unpredictable time in the vegetable markets (Sigh….)

7 thoughts on “Asparagus Salad with Quail Eggs; asparagus season”

  1. I have never seen a quail egg in my life. They might carry them at a Trader Joe’s, I don’t know, but the closest to me is over an hour away. I’ll have to stick to chicken or duck eggs which I get from our local ‘farmers’ around here.

    We’ve had an overabundance of asparagus this year, but I don’t know where it’s coming from because we’ve experience the same kind of weather. Yesterday and today it’s 70. They’re predicting two inches of snow on Wednesday. And the prices are high on the asparagus, so it’s not local at all. But the smaller stalks are tasty so I try to buy those. The ones bigger than my pinky are tough and woody.

    • It’s not cheap here, but usually lots and lots of it for the 5 – 6 week season. I never saw quail eggs either until I lived here, but both quail and the eggs are popular.

  2. I have a friend who is violently allergic to quail eggs. My first asparagus spear has appeared in the garden. I’m one of those weirdos that prefers green to white too.

  3. I will be back in Morocco next week so it will be interesting to see what is fresh in the souks…maybe some of the rarely seen white asparagus

  4. Asparagus season already?! …not here. The forsythia hasn’t even blossomed yet. :stomp: (It snowed about 100km north of here yesterday – we escaped the snow and just had freezing rain here in the balmy {cough} south)

    Once I figured out how to block the runny yolk quail eggs (cute as they may be) from sight, I saw that your asparagus looks lovely. Vinaigrette is always good with asparagus, isn’t it? But. Looking back at the photo and forgetting to block the view of the eggs, I’m suddenly thinking: Hollandaise Sauce. Yes. That’s how the eggs should be presented on the plate. 😉

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