6 cups fresh spinach leaves, washed, dried, and chilled
1 pound asparagus stalks, washed and trimmed
3 tablespoons good-quality balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons minced red onion
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground pepper
1 hard-cooked egg, chopped
Remove stems and veins from spinach leaves and tear into bite-sized pieces; place spinach on individual serving plates.
Blanch the asparagus in lightly salted boiling water for approximately 3 minutes or until crisp-tender; do not overcook. Remove from heat and refresh under cold water; drain and dry well; set aside.
In a large frying pan over medium heat, whisk together balsamic vinegar, olive oil, red onion, garlic, and pepper; heat mixture until hot, stirring occasionally. Add cooked asparagus spears to dressing mixture, tossing to coat and reheat.
Remove from heat. Place asparagus spears over the top of the spinach. Pour warm dressing over asparagus and spinach. Sprinkle with chopped egg and serve immediately. Makes 6 to 8 servings.