Wine and food make a fine marriage in the Nappa household. Anthony Nappa, owner of Anthony Nappa Wines and winemaker at Raphael, both in Peconic, makes the wine; his wife, Chef Sarah Evans Nappa, makes the food. Sarah suggests preparing this seasonal dish with a bunch of local asparagus soon.
The married pair agrees that Anthony Nappa Wines New York State Riesling is just the right accompaniment for this dish. Seasonal wine pairing dinners, prepared by Sarah, are a special perk for members of the Anthony Nappa Wines Club members. No wonder he had to cap the club membership!
Asparagus with Cured Farm Egg Yolk & Anchovy-Lemon Vinaigrette
by Chef Sarah Evans Nappa
Two days before you’d like to serve the salad, mix together equal parts salt and sugar in a square baking dish. Remove half the mixture with a measuring cup. Make 4 wells, but not so deep that you can see the bottom of the dish. Separate 4 yolks and place them in the wells. Cover with the mixture you removed. Allow to cure at room temperature for 24 hours, then remove, brush off extra cure and let dry for 24 hours at room temperature. Store in a sealed container.
—To blanche (if needed*), bring a pot of water to boil, add salt enough to taste it, drop asparagus in for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Then shock in an ice bath.
—Cut asparagus on a bias, pieces 1/2-inch long.
—In a small bowl, add 2 anchovy filets, 1 teaspoon mustard, 1 tablespoon lemon juice and the zest from half a lemon, whisk in 3/4 cup of olive oil and season with salt and pepper if needed (can be made with a teaspoon of mayo and half the olive oil for a creamier dressing).
—Add vinaigrette to asparagus, toss to coat, season.
—Use a microplane to grate egg yolk over the top. Serve garnished with fresh baby herbs.
*Depending on how fresh your asparagus is, you may not even need to blanche them. If bought from a farm or picked yourself, bend the lower end until it snaps, bite the long stem and see if it’s woody at all, if not, eat fresh!