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Posts Tagged ‘spring salad’

Salad

I bought a few sunchokes (also known as Jerusalem artichokes) at the green market on Sunday and since I wasn’t up to turning the oven on to roast them – my usual way with them -I turned them into another healthy salad for Steve’s lunch. I used my trusty Japanese Benriner vegetable turner to make zucchini strands which I tossed with shaved sunchoke and finely sliced nectarine. I dressed the salad with some lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper and then sprinkled some black sesame seeds over the mix. It immediately became Steve’s new favorite.

A word about sunchokes in case you don’t know them: They are the tuber root of a type of sunflower – not the garden variety – that is a native to America. They are high in protein, potassium, fiber, and iron as well as the inulin which makes them a healthy choice for Type 2 diabetics. They are often used in place of potatoes although they have no starch and are slightly sweet. Nobody really knows where the name Jerusalem artichoke comes from, but the name sunchoke was given to them by Frieda Caplan whose company Frieda’s Finest Specialty Produce has introduced American cooks to many undiscovered vegetables and fruits.

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Spring Salad_P5067112

With summer almost here I decided that maybe, just maybe I should lose a few pounds. Not that I’m ever going to be seen in a bikini, but just because in the hot New York summer you need to feel lighter. So, since less pounds translates to less food on the plate, I have been trying to eat more salads for dinner. This is one I came up with using ingredients I had on hand. The center is a mixed bean salad that was a bit spicy (black and red beans along with chickpeas, chopped onion and sun-dried tomato, chopped herbs, a little fresh chili, olive oil), around and about some sliced tomato and bits of bufala mozzarella and some fresh basil. I drizzled some balsamic vinaigrette around the edge of the plate and had a very satisfying dinner.

About balsamic vinaigrette I use 2 parts olive oil, 1 part balsamic vinegar, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, salt and pepper. I shake it up in a plastic squeeze bottle and always have it on hand to season salads or sandwiches or to drizzle over grilled meats or poultry. (If you like the flavors you can also add celery salt, onion powder, and/or garlic powder to taste.)

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