Midnight Kitchen

Coolest summer salad

Hot enough for ya?
Inspired by a quick bite last week at Whole Foods, here is my adaptation of their Mediterranean Crunch Salad. I used some fresh veg from my weekly Organics of Naples delivery. It’s essentially a chopped salad, so keep it all bite-sized (or smaller). The great thing about the intense dressing is that it holds its flavor well through a heavy chill. You can eat this as is, add more toppings, and/or pile it onto some spinach and lettuce. Quantities are forgiving, so get crazy.

Serves 10-14
For the dressing:
2 limes, zest and juice
1-3 garlic cloves, minced then crushed with a little salt
Big pinch of ground cumin or crushed fennel seeds (optional)
Big pinch of smoked paprika (optional)
Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
2-3 tablespoons olive or almond oil
Splash of rice vinegar
Salt & pepper to taste

For the salad:
2-3 cucumbers, partially peeled, cut in chunks
1/2 – 1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved; or 1-2 cups Roma tomatoes, cut in chunks
1 fennel bulb, chopped, & a handful of chopped fronds, or a handful of chopped celery (optional)
1 cup kale, finely chopped
1 cup cooked chick peas
1/2 cup kalamata olives, chopped
1/2 cup roasted red pepper, chopped
1-2 cups cooked grains (wheat berries, farro, brown rice)
1/2 – 1 cup fresh herbs, chopped (basil, parsley) or a bit of tarragon

(Wondering what to do with your broccoli ‘trunks’? Peel with a paring knife, then slice into rounds and toss them in, too.)

Combine the dressing ingredients in a very large bowl & let stand while you prep the rest of the salad.
Add everything else and toss it with the dressing. Chill or eat.

Some great additions, right before serving:
Feta, blue cheese, or goat cheese
Toasted walnuts or pine nuts
More chopped tender greens, like spinach, mizuna, or arugula
More cooked grain or beans

This entry was published on August 12, 2011 at 12:28 pm. It’s filed under Food and Cooking and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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