For lunch today I decided to utilize some of my unique finds from last weekend’s farmers’ market: the radish microgreens and the Peter Rabbit sea salt blend (flavors of radish and dill). Along with my first picking of fresh spinach and some chives from my garden, I had a great start to a new salad combination.
Or so I thought.
I put the salad together, drizzled it with avocado oil and lemon juice and sprinkled it with pepper. I took the first bite and thought, “Wow! I’m really on to something special.” And then it hit me.
Fresh greens, onion, radish … this is the salad of my childhood.
My mom and I would pick (see tip below) the most tender leaf lettuce from the long row in the garden and pull a few green onions and radishes before heading inside to make what my family has always considered a special treat. We would wash the vegetables, taking care to gently swish the lettuce in the water to make sure we didn’t break or tear the leaves, and thinly slice the radishes and onions. When the leaves were dry we would combine all three and just before serving, sprinkle it with salt and pepper and drizzle with the dressing.
This dressing was/is incredible. So simple, so delicious. And I don’t remember using it on anything else but this salad. I don’t know why. Maybe that’s part of what made this salad something we craved every spring. It is simply half-n-half (maybe 1/3 cup), sugar (1/2-1 teaspoon), and a small drizzle of vinegar (1/2-1 teaspoon). This dressing is thin enough that it will lightly coat the lettuce without weighing it down. It is just sweet enough to balance with the bite of the radishes. The vinegar provides the acid or the tang that rounds it all out.
Although I more than enjoyed my version of this salad, I think I can improve on it next time. A little half-n-half improves just about everything!
FOOD TIP: When I say “pick” what I mean is to gently pinch off each individual leaf of lettuce. Don’t pull the whole plant because the plant continues to produce after you pinch the bigger leaves. This is an art. You’d think I’d have developed more patience given the lessons I was taught, wouldn’t you?
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