Asparagus, Lima Bean and Salami Salad Recipe from Italy

Asparagus, Lima Bean and Salami Salad

Asparagus, Lima Bean and Salami Salad Recipe from Italy
Region / culture: Italy | Preparation time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 5 minutes | Servings: 4


Asparagus, Lima Bean and Salami Salad
Asparagus, Lima Bean and Salami Salad

This Asparagus, Lima Bean, and Salami Salad recipe is a delightful blend of fresh, vibrant flavors and textures that come together to create a dish that's both nutritious and satisfying. Perfect for spring and summer gatherings, this salad combines the tender crispness of asparagus, the creamy texture of lima beans, and the savory punch of Genoa salami, all dressed in a light and aromatic dressing. It's a versatile dish that can serve as a refreshing side or a light main course.


The origins of combining vegetables with cured meats can be traced back to Mediterranean cuisine, where fresh produce and charcuterie are staples in the diet. This particular recipe draws inspiration from Italian culinary traditions, where ingredients like asparagus, beans, and salami are often featured in salads and antipasti. Over time, this recipe has evolved to incorporate elements like lemon zest and rosemary, enhancing its flavor profile and making it a modern classic.


How to prepare

  1. In a pot of lightly salted boiling water, cook the asparagus for 3 to 5 minutes, until it is tender-crisp.
  2. Drain the asparagus into a colander and rinse it under cold running water for 3 minutes.
  3. Allow any excess water to drain, then stack the asparagus in bundles and cut them into 1-inch pieces.
  4. Place the cut asparagus in a large bowl.
  5. In the same bowl, add the oil, garlic, rosemary, lemon zest, salt, and pepper.
  6. Add the lima beans and salami to the bowl, and toss everything together to coat the ingredients evenly.


  • For a vegetarian version, omit the salami and add grilled halloumi cheese or chickpeas for protein. You can also experiment with different herbs, such as thyme or basil, for a variation in flavor.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure the asparagus is perfectly tender-crisp, avoid overcooking it. Keep a close eye on the asparagus while it's boiling, and immediately transfer it to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. When cutting the salami, stack the slices and then cut them into matchsticks for a uniform size that integrates well with the other ingredients. For the best flavor, use high-quality extra-virgin olive oil and fresh lemon zest.

Serving Suggestions

This salad can be served on its own as a light lunch or as a side dish with grilled chicken, fish, or steak for a more substantial meal. It's also perfect for picnics and potlucks, as it can be made ahead and served at room temperature.

Cooking Techniques

Steaming the asparagus instead of boiling can help retain more nutrients and prevent it from becoming too soft. If you prefer a charred flavor, grilling the asparagus briefly after steaming can add a smoky dimension to the salad.

Ingredient Substitutions

If lima beans are not available, you can substitute them with edamame or green beans. For a different type of cured meat, prosciutto or pancetta can be used in place of Genoa salami.

Make Ahead Tips

This salad can be prepared up to a day in advance. Store the dressed salad in the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature before serving. Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to refresh the flavors before serving.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the salad in a large, shallow bowl to showcase the vibrant colors and textures. Garnish with lemon zest and a sprig of rosemary for an elegant touch.

Pairing Recommendations

This salad pairs beautifully with a crisp white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc or Pinot Grigio, which complements the fresh flavors of the asparagus and lemon.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Leftover salad can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. It's best enjoyed cold or at room temperature, as reheating may cause the asparagus to become overly soft.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of this salad contains approximately 200 calories, making it a light yet satisfying option that can fit into various dietary plans.


This salad is relatively low in carbohydrates, with the primary sources being the asparagus and lima beans. One serving contains approximately 15 grams of carbohydrates, making it a suitable option for those monitoring their carb intake.


The fats in this salad come mainly from the extra-virgin olive oil and the Genoa salami. The total fat content per serving is about 10 grams, with 2 grams of saturated fat. The use of olive oil contributes monounsaturated fats, which are known for their heart-healthy benefits.


This dish provides a moderate amount of protein, with each serving containing approximately 8 grams. The protein sources are the lima beans and the Genoa salami, making this salad a good option for those looking to increase their protein intake.

Vitamins and minerals

Asparagus is a rich source of vitamins A, C, and E, as well as folate and iron. Lima beans contribute additional folate, iron, and potassium. Together, these ingredients make the salad not only delicious but also a powerhouse of essential vitamins and minerals.


This recipe contains potential allergens, including garlic and salami, which may contain traces of dairy and gluten depending on the brand. Those with specific food allergies should modify the recipe accordingly or ensure that all ingredients used are free from allergens.


Overall, this Asparagus, Lima Bean, and Salami Salad is a balanced dish that offers a variety of nutrients, including healthy fats, moderate protein, and essential vitamins and minerals, all while being relatively low in calories and carbohydrates.


This Asparagus, Lima Bean, and Salami Salad is a celebration of fresh, simple ingredients coming together to create a dish that's both nutritious and full of flavor. With its easy preparation and versatile serving options, it's sure to become a favorite for any occasion.

How did I get this recipe?

The memory of finding this recipe for the first time brings a smile to my face. It was a warm summer day, and I had been invited to a potluck picnic with some friends. I wanted to bring something unique and delicious, so I started flipping through my collection of old recipe cards.

As I was browsing through the cards, one in particular caught my eye. It was a recipe for Asparagus, Lima Bean, and Salami Salad. I had never heard of such a combination before, but something about it intrigued me. The ingredients seemed simple enough, and I was always up for trying something new in the kitchen.

I gathered the necessary ingredients and set to work. I blanched the asparagus until it was just tender, then shocked it in an ice bath to stop the cooking process. I cooked the lima beans until they were tender but still had a bit of bite to them. And finally, I diced up some salami into small pieces to add a salty and savory element to the salad.

Once everything was prepared, I tossed it all together in a simple vinaigrette made with olive oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon mustard, and a touch of honey. The flavors came together beautifully, each ingredient complementing the others in a way that was truly delicious.

I brought the salad to the potluck picnic, and it was a hit. My friends couldn't get enough of it, and they all wanted the recipe. I was happy to share it with them, knowing that I had stumbled upon something truly special.

Over the years, I have made this salad countless times, each time tweaking the recipe slightly to suit my tastes. Sometimes I add a bit of fresh herbs like parsley or dill for a pop of freshness. Other times, I swap out the lima beans for edamame or peas for a different twist.

But no matter how I choose to make it, this salad always brings back that warm summer day when I first discovered it. It reminds me of the joy of trying something new in the kitchen and the satisfaction of sharing a delicious dish with friends and loved ones.

As I sit here now, flipping through my collection of old recipe cards, I can't help but smile at the memory of finding this gem of a recipe. It's a reminder that sometimes the best dishes come from unexpected places, and that a little curiosity and creativity in the kitchen can lead to wonderful things.

So if you ever find yourself in need of a new salad recipe to impress your friends, I highly recommend giving this Asparagus, Lima Bean, and Salami Salad a try. Who knows, it may just become a favorite in your own collection of recipes, just like it has in mine.


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