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Plum Crazy Salad

August 31, 2012

This is an elegant summer salad with a blend of sweet and savory.  The winning flavor combination for me is tarragon in the dressing and thin slices of fennel in the salad. The tarragon is a retro flavor that brings me back to the late 80’s when the culinary world was stuck in the Pink Zinfandel/ Tarragon craze. Glad it’s back ……..the tarragon!

Plum, Cherry, Goat Cheese Salad     (adapted from Bon Appetit) 

Serves 6

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons shallot, finely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh tarragon, finely chopped

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

3/4 cup sliced almonds

1 large egg

1 tablespoon water

1 11-ounce log soft fresh goat cheese, cut into 6 rounds

6 cups mixed greens      (my recipe uses chard, kale, and *purslane)

1 cup halved pitted fresh Bing cherries

1/2 cup fennel, sliced

3 plums, sliced into wedges

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Whisk first 5 ingredients into a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Spread almonds on a plate. Whisk egg and 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Turn goat cheese rounds in egg mixture and coat with almonds. ( Can be made 4 hours ahead, chill in fridge) Place on baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes until browned but not melted. Combine greens in small bowl, add dressing and toss. Divide salad among 6 plates. Arrange plums, cherries, fennel, goat cheese and serve.

*Purslane

On one of my latest trips to the Common Threads Garden, I stumbled across a great find. Master Gardener, Cheryl, was teaching the children about edible weeds. My excitement grew as I discovered this little green, (which many people see as an invasive weed) is actually a nutritional powerhouse! Purslane (considered a succulent) researchers confirm is a rich source of Omega 3 fatty acids, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, more so than any other leafy plant. Purslane contains key nutrients of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, and niacin. Like all plant foods, purslane is cholesterol and fat free. It’s low in calories (7 per cup), naturally low in sodium and contains almost no sugars.  Purslane is often served with fish to compliment it’s citrus flavor. You will also often find purslane used as a micro-green. You will now often find me…..using Purslane whenever I can!!

(I have been in pursuit of this tasty green for weeks………hard to find outside of large farmers markets………but worth the hunt!!!)

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. September 1, 2012 2:32 am

    Just found your blog today. Love it. These photos are stunning. Can’t wait to follow you!

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