on the menu: caesar vinaigrette

On June 19, 2016 by theseventhsphinx

Here is the recipe for the caesar vinaigrette I’m putting on various kale-heavy salads lately. I can’t get enough of this kind of salad; handfuls of kale and spring greens with enough variegated debris to make it interesting, doused with a punchy, sour vinaigrette.

kale salad

This vinaigrette is cobbled together from a few recipes and features significantly more vinegar than is usual for anyone, evidently. I don’t really measure any of this, I approximate based on these amounts.

2 T sherry vinegar (champagne or white wine vinegar also works)
1 T Dijon mustard
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 tsp lemon zest (or, in a pinch, juice)
1/2 tsp anchovy paste
1 tsp honey
dash worcestershire sauce
generous pinch of herbs de provence
1/3 c olive oil (Maybe less. I like a vinegar heavy dressing, some would use more like 1/2 or 2/3 c oil.  A nice grassy green oil is excellent here, and one with more of a black olive flavor is lovely, too.)
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 c freshly shredded Pecorino cheese (or skip this and grate big ribbons over the salad, or do both.)
salt and pepper to taste

Shake it up, dresses two large portions.

For example I pour about half over a mixing bowl full of vegetable matter. I’m not sharing that.

I like to shake rather than employ some tool to emulsify, was recently reading that shredding the olive oil can bring out a bitterness that shaking prevents. This dressing has so many powerful flavors that it probably wouldn’t make a significant difference but shaking is also quick and easy. I use a trusty Ball jar.

Also recommended: pimentón on avocado.

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on the menu: white beans, chorizo, kale

On October 3, 2014 by theseventhsphinx

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White beans, chorizo, and kale. With classic Spanish chorizo this dish is wonderfully flavorful and warming. The peculiar sweetness of kale balances the spicy, smoky chorizo.

Not hard:

2 Tbs olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1 bell pepper, chopped

3 cloves garlic, minimum

chorizo, several inches worth, chopped to whatever size. Medallions are popular/picturesque but I like smaller pieces. Chorizo imported from Spain or in the Spanish style is ideal. Portuguese linguica is an OK substitute, any other substitution will require the addition of herbs and pimentón to supply the flavor.

splash of wine

2 cans cannelini beans, rinsed

8 oz broth, your preference

plenty of shredded kale, probably you will wish you had added more

Saute onions, peppers, garlic in olive oil (a dutch oven is nice for this dish), let them get plenty of color. Add the chorizo, allow fat to render. De-glaze with whatever wine you are drinking (I prefer white with this dish, a Sauvignon Blanc maybe, or Chardonnay, or sherry!). Mix in the beans and add the broth (I like beef broth here). Add the kale (I don’t even bother to mix it in at this point, just leave it on the top) and cover to allow the kale to steam. Once it has wilted, mix in. The longer everything can simmer at this point, the better. Say, 20 minutes. Chorizo is traditionally a dry sausage, and takes time to soften, also the flavors have time to mingle.

You can add more or less broth depending on how soupy you would like the final result, this combination is popular as an actual soup as well. All quantities are flexible.

Serve with toast.

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[This recipe is adapted from one from about.com, which I can’t find anymore.]

on the menu: grilled ginger salmon with kale, fleur de sel

On February 15, 2013 by theseventhsphinx

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Fleur de sel is so pretty.

Ginger, garlic, herbs de provençe & tellicherry pepper on wild Alaskan sockeye salmon. Wonderfully rich, fatty texture on this fish, which I was careful not to overcook.

Lots of ginger.

After I took the photo I added even more parsley. I have a thing about piling on herb garnishes until ‘garnish’ isn’t quite the right category for them anymore. More like, ‘incorporated side dish’.