Monday, May 2, 2011

Chop Chop Salad

After a purely decadent weekend do you ever just feel the need for a really big, fresh, crunchy salad?

Well, after our weekend of 'work' in Oregon state's gorgeous and entirely delicious land of pinot, we were both dying for a really nice salad. And a lot of water.

We sufficiently packed Honey's car to the gills, so if you're local, you're in luck because some of the delicious treasures we carted home will be on the shelf at the shop for you to take home; you should come in and check it out.

It was rather hilarious actually. I tried to talk him in to taking my car, so we would have plenty of room to cart the wine home, but he insisted on being 'green' and taking his hybrid. A Honda. A Civic.

By the end of the trip the back end was dragging so much you'd have sworn there was something inappropriately heavy in the back. Something that is as heavy as something that is really really heavy.

Wonder how that hybrid gas mileage is now...

We made it home though; in one piece and with only a mild headache. This salad was a perfect, crispy, crunchy end to a delicious and decadent weekend. Everyone needs a salad now and then, right?

For the dressing:
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, chopped fine
2 Tablespoons dijon mustard
Sea salt
Fresh cracked pepper

4-5 stalks asparagus, ends trimmed off and cut into about 3/4 inch pieces
1 bunch radishes, quartered
About 15-20 snow peas, ends trimmed and cut lengthwise into thin strips
3 stalks celery, chopped into bite sized pieces
About 10-15 cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
1 package 3 bean munchies
1/2 package matchstick carrots
1 head napa cabbage, shredded
About 10-15 large basil leaves, julienned

Combine balsamic vinegar, olive oil, dijon mustard and salt and pepper into a jar or dressing container and shake until fully combined. Set aside.

Prepare all your veg and, in a large bowl, combine asparagus, radishes, snow peas, celery, tomatoes, 3 bean munchies and carrot.

Place cabbage in a separate bowl.

Give your dressing one more shake then drizzle half of the dressing on the cabbage and toss to ensure even coverage.

Drizzle the other half of the dressing on the veg and toss to cover vegetables evenly.

Divide cabbage evenly amongst salad bowls. On top of the cabbage, portion the veg out evenly, ensuring each bowl has healthy display of all ingredients.

Top salads with julienned basil and you're ready to go.

I served the salads with fresh, homemade garlic breadsticks. Their garlicky, salty profile made them the perfect partner for this fresh, crunchy salad. I'll post the recipe for those soon!



Napa Cabbage

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