Friday, March 12, 2010

I Love Salad

Two months ago I did a cleanse for my whole body that was more or less vegan, gluten free, and majority raw. I made some amazing salads and salad dressings, but the one that stands out the most to me was the grapefruit, avocado and watercress salad. I bought a 10lb bag of grapefruits a week before I started this cleanse and I was barely eating them. I did not want them to go bad so I researched some grapefruit ideas and this salad was a combination of two recipes I liked the most. First with the grapefruits I peeled them, trying to get as much of the white stuff from the peel off. This part is bitter and I didn't want to add it into my sweet refreshing salad. Then I pretty much just tore the grapefruit apart making all the pink insides into small little pieces that were beautiful and hot pink! Then I sliced up an avocado into pretty decent sized cubes. I added watercress to give the salad a little bit of a kick. Watercress is so good for you and barely eaten on anybodies table. It has a mild peppery flavor and is great to add to any type of salad mix that you are using.

I then made an orange dressing with extra virgin olive oil, I have two bottles of Extra Virgin olive oil; one for cooking and the other for salad dressings. The one for dressings or drizzling over things is a little bit more expensive just because when serving olive oil raw you want it to taste good. When making dressings I generally us a 3 oil to 1 acid (vinegar, wine, lemon juice, orange juice, etc). When using a juice I usually add a little bit more just so the flavor is a little bit more overpowering than the oil. To keep my dressing from separating I added a tablespoon of Dijon mustard, the flavor mixes well with citrus and vinegar without taking over the whole flavor of dressing. To spice it up a little bit I added some fresh dill, a little bit more than a teaspoon of honey for sweetness, a clove of garlic, some crushed red peppers, and of course Kosher salt and some pepper to taste.

Before serving the salad my "dinner guest" stuck their hand into the grapefruit and had no problem telling me that the grapefruit was a little tart. I obviously smacked their hand away and told them to wait until the whole salad is together before making judgements. Once the rest of my dinner was ready (Stuffed bell peppers with brown rice, toasted pine nuts, basil, corn, shitaki mushrooms and then drizzled with some homemade pesto was the main dish) I put the very chilled and dressed salad on the table and my "dinner guest" dug in. Once dinner was over and no salad was left I received a whisper in my ear, " The salad was perfect you should make this for salad every night. The sour grapefruit was perfect with sweet avocados, whatever the lettuce you used, and the dressing is my new favorite salad dressing. Don't forget the recipe!"
I'd call it another stepping out of the box dinner success.

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