Hi there. Just a quick hello and a recipe today. Last week, I promised you bread. Um, here’s some salad.
It looks a little like this salad. And, well, this salad too. I made it for a friend’s birthday and after we ate dessert as our first course (hey, it’s a birthday!) it was, hands down, everyone’s favorite dish. More on that dinner and that first course cake soon. But for now, again and from a different angle, here’s some salad.
Kale and pear salad with pomegranate gremolata This salad is based on an arugula and watercress salad in last month’s Food & Wine. It’s a great combination of bitter, sweet, and sour. And a great combination of textures – the crisp juicy pears, the pop of the pomegranate arils, the chewy kale. Make sure to toss the greens with half the vinaigrette about 30 minutes before serving so that it will start to wilt and absorb the flavors. You probably will have some leftover vinaigrette. Gremolata is an herb mix, usually lemon zest, garlic, and parsley, and traditionally sprinkled over osso bucco. The zest and parsley give any dish a really bright flavor; I like how Food Lover’s Companion puts it: “It’s sprinkled over … dishes to add a fresh sprightly flavor.” Sprightly, yeah, that nails it. If you don’t want to dirty another bowl, feel free to sprinkle the gremolata ingredients over the salad after you’ve dressed the greens rather than mixing everything separately. Next time, I’ll peel and segment the oranges and add them to the salad too.
– 2 larges bunch kale (approximately 1 1/2 pounds or 6 C shredded and loosely packed) – I tried this with dinosaur and curly kale, and preferred the slightly tougher curly variety
– 3 Bosc pears
– Pomegranate vinaigrette (recipe below)
– Pomegranate gremolata (recipe below)
Slice. Fold each kale leaf in half and cut away the stems. Working in batches of several leaves, stack the leaves in a pile, roll them like a cigar, and slice the leaves crosswise into thin ribbons. Cut the pear into bite-sized pieces. Assemble. Scoop the kale into a large bowl and add half the dressing. Toss the leaves and let them sit for a half-hour. Right before serving, sprinkle with the pears and gremolata. Drizzle with more dressing to taste.
Pomegranate molasses vinaigrette
– 1/4 C extra-virgin olive oil
– 2 T pomegranate molasses
– 2 T apple cider vinegar
– 1 T honey
– 1 T Dijon mustard
– salt and pepper
Whisk or shake. In a bowl or jar, add all the ingredients and whisk or shake to emulsify. Add salt and pepper to taste.
– 1 pomegranate for 3/4 C arils/seeds
– about 20 stems flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
– 1 shallot
– 1 orange for zest
Seed. Remove the arils/seeds from the pomegranate. I usually cut the pomegranate in half and tap the skin with a wooden spoon over a bowl of water (the seeds sink and any white pith floats to the top) but if you want to get every last seed, check out these detailed instructions. Chop. Finely chop the parsley leaves. Mince the shallot. Mix. In a small bowl, mix together the pomegranate seeds, parsley, and shallot. Zest the orange into the bowl and toss again.