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Butter Lettuce and Radish Salad with Fresh Spring Herbs

Butter Lettuce and Radish Salad with Fresh Spring Herbs


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Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon minced shallot
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 small heads of butter lettuce, outer leaves removed
  • 1 avocado, peeled, pitted, sliced 1/2 inch thick
  • 1/2 cup assorted whole fresh herb leaves (such as tarragon, chervil, parsley, and cilantro)

Recipe Preparation

  • Whisk oil, vinegar, shallot, and mustard in medium bowl to blend. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

  • Cut cores from heads of lettuce, keeping heads intact; rinse and dry. Arrange 1 head of lettuce on each of 2 plates, forming rose shape. Tuck radish and avocado slices between lettuce leaves. Scatter fresh herb leaves over lettuce on each plate. Drizzle salad with dressing and serve.

Recipe by Bon Appétit Test KitchenReviews Section

What The Well-Dressed Salad Is Wearing For Spring

You might not think of strawberries as a salad ingredient, but in-season berries, fruits and greens, along with nuts and cheeses, can turn an ordinary side salad into the highlight of a meal. Bonny Wolf for NPR hide caption

I ordered a side salad with my dinner the other night, feeling the need for something green. This usually is an afterthought — for me and, it often seems, for the kitchen.

A plate of baby greens, sprinkled with pieces of cauliflower pickled in turmeric, tiny rings of pickled shallot and tasty cherry tomatoes, all dressed with a light, creamy vinaigrette. . The salad tasted like spring.

What I got, however, was the product of obvious thinking — a plate of baby greens, sprinkled with pieces of cauliflower pickled in turmeric, tiny rings of pickled shallot and tasty cherry tomatoes, all dressed with a light, creamy vinaigrette. The greens were arugula, spinach, kale, mizuna and tatsoi (Asian mustard greens). The salad tasted like spring.

"You couldn't get a nice salad when lettuce was shipped across country in tractor trailers," says Jordan Lloyd, chef and owner of the Bartlett Pear Inn in Easton, Md., and creator of my lovely salad. "It had no soul. It was just a chunk of lettuce."

In the beginning, there was iceberg — a chunk of lettuce. It was a constant in many American homes, often topped with bottled dressing. Then there was the mesclun mix of lettuces available at upscale markets and, later, supermarkets. That mix was ultimately prewashed and bagged for further convenience. None of these are bad things. However, there was a sameness to the taste of any side salad. It wasn't a highlight of the meal — just a way to get your greens.

About The Author

Bonny Wolf is Kitchen Window's contributing editor, a commentator on NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday and the author of Talking with My Mouth Full: Crab Cakes, Bundt Cakes and Other Kitchen Stories (St. Martins 2006). Follow her on Twitter: @bonnywolf.

The locavore movement changed everything. Many areas now have farmers markets on every corner, with a variety of salad ingredients that have dirt still clinging to their roots.

Which is Lloyd's point: "My philosophy is soil to table in one day," he says. When he finishes at the restaurant around midnight, he calls his local farmers, who tell him what's available. His produce is picked the next morning and on his diners' plates before the next sunset.

"Everyone says, 'Your food is so good,' " Lloyd says. "But it's the farmers who give me the products that make it good."

The relationship between many chefs and farmers is changing as cooks go straight to the source for their products. Right now, Lloyd has a personal farmer who grows just what he asks for. He picks baby lettuces when they're nice and tender, he has English peas and asparagus, and Lloyd has gone through the guy's whole stock of "incredible carrots." This time of year, Lloyd gets cherry tomatoes from a nearby hothouse farm. "They taste like the earth," he said. "You can smell the vine." From another farmer, he gets "incredible radishes."

Like many other chefs, Lloyd has been doing a lot of pickling. He makes piccalilli, or cauliflower pickled with turmeric. He strews these and pickled shallots in his restaurant's side salad. He got ramps (sometimes called wild leeks and one of the first wild spring greens) last week from a local farmer who went on a ramp-picking vacation in Virginia. (We are talking about people who are serious about fresh vegetables.) The ramps are pickling.

Books

Plant Eater's Paradise: 2012's Best Summer Cookbooks

At my local farmers market this week, I got such beautiful heads of red leaf lettuce and chicory, I wanted to display them as bouquets. I found French breakfast radishes and white icicle radishes. I bought a bag of mixed baby mustard greens and another of red Russian kale. I threw in a bunch of brilliant violet chive blossoms.

Fresh herbs can be the basis of a dinner salad, dressed with just a little olive oil and lemon juice. Deborah Madison in Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone promotes parsley as an especially healthful and good salad. She suggests serving an herb salad with mild foods or as a contrast to rich food.

In addition to greens and herbs, toss in a few shavings of Parmesan or chunks of goat cheese, dried currants soaked in vinegar, pickled vegetables, fresh fruit (strawberries are perfect right now) and all kinds of roasted nuts.

The easy availability of such fresh, varied seasonal produce means no side salad should be an afterthought.

Lettuce Families

In Vegetable Cooking for Everyone (Broadway 1997), Deborah Madison gives a basic list of lettuce family groups to which I've made a few additions.

Crispheads: These are lettuces that crunch, the most common of which is iceberg. Use when you want texture or are planning to use a heavy dressing.

Assorted herbs and greens from Gardeners Gourmet of Westminster, Md., at the Eastern Market in Washington, D.C. Bonny Wolf for NPR hide caption

Assorted herbs and greens from Gardeners Gourmet of Westminster, Md., at the Eastern Market in Washington, D.C.

Romaine or cos lettuces: They are characterized by long, slender leaves and a texture with some snap. Like iceberg, they stand up to a heavy dressing.

Loose-leaf lettuces: These are soft, open heads of loosely joined tender leaves. Red leaf and green leaf are common varieties. They take a lighter dressing.

Butterheads: Soft, butter-textured leaves form a loose rosette — Boston, bibb and butter lettuce are common. More exotic varieties are shot with bronze or red. These lettuces are tender and elegant — perfect for a nice dinner salad.

Mesclun and other garden mixes: Mixtures of small lettuce leaves and other greens often include arugula, mustards, frisse, mache, baby spinach and — recently — tatsoi and mizuna (Asian mustard greens). Mesclun is a French word for a specific mixture, but in the U.S. many things are called mesclun.

Kale: This is the green of the moment. In addition to the most commonly seen kale, red Russian kale and lacinato — also known as black or dinosaur kale — and others are available at many markets and have become very popular as a raw salad.

Others: Every week there seems to be another green that would be good mixed in a salad — pea shoots, purslane, amaranth, lamb's quarter. Some of these grow wild, so foragers, keep your eyes open. They all have slightly different flavors and piquancies.


Butter Lettuce Salad with Parmesan Vinaigrette

I give you my very best butter lettuce salad full of all the good stuff: crispy bacon, bright radishes, torn croutons, a creamy parmesan vinaigrette, and just a bit of fresh dill. It’s simple and oh so tasty. The perfect dish to serve alongside just about any meal.

It’s the week after Easter with lots going on, and all I’m craving in the kitchen is simplicity.

And so, I figured it was the perfect time to tell you all about this butter lettuce salad. I’ve actually been making it for a few weeks now. It truly just always sounds like a good idea. Especially for our family dinners when I need something quick to make alongside steaks or a pasta, this recipe has been a perfect addition.

The flavors in here somewhat mimic a caesar salad, but to me it’s fresher and really nice for spring. I’m using butter lettuce, which is subtle and smooth so it takes on a lot of flavor. Added in a bit of endive as well for a crisp bite.

For richness, we’ve got the bacon and parmesan…the parm appearing in both a tangy vinaigrette and as large shaves of fresh cheese on top of the salad. For crunch, some homemade torn crusty bread cooked in olive oil until golden and crispy. And for something bright and oh so pretty, thinly shaved radishes.

Everything comes together effortlessly. It’s fresh and delicious, and I can’t wait for you to try it. I’m thinking it’d be the perfect counterpart to this grilled flank steak with chimichurri


Butter Lettuce and Radish Salad with Fresh Spring Herbs - Recipes

As the weather warms up, it’s natural to start craving lighter foods instead of the hearty comfort foods of winter (it’s finally over… we think). It’s perfect timing, as spring vegetables are making a comeback in a big way.

The trick is not to get stuck making the same type of salad over and over — try experimenting with different cooking methods and various forms of vegetables in the salad. For example, asparagus can be shaved with a vegetable peeler or mandoline and eaten raw with a tangy vinaigrette for a crunchier salad, or it can be roasted, chopped, and tossed with some shredded chicken.

Below are some ideas for recipes to make this spring in order to take full advantage of the seasonal bounty available.

Beet Salad with Mint and Basil

Topping sweet and nutritious beets with fresh herbs like mint and basil gives it a lovely aroma and bright color.

Top fresh spring asparagus with a nutty oil and bright orange zest for a refreshing dish.

A fun way to use spring carrots is by making this dressing, often found over greens in Japanese restaurants.

Butter Lettuce with Lemon-Basil Dressing

Light, tender heads of lettuce begin to pop up during springtime, and dressing them with a refreshing vinaigrette like this one is near perfection.

Whole-Leaf Radish and Herb Salad

This bright and rejuvenating salad takes advantage of fresh herbs and spicy radishes.


Butter Lettuce Salad

  • Author: Chef Whitney Aronoff
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1 x
  • Category: Salad
  • Method: Blender
  • Cuisine: Healthy

Description

A great salad for a dinner party or your weekly meal prep. Butter lettuce layered with black lentils, cherry tomatoes, diced cucumbers, fresh herbs and a magical smoky blue cheese dressing.

Ingredients

  • ¼ c white wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • ½ medium shallot
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • ¼ cup smoked olive oil, such as Sonoma Smoked
  • ¼ cup organic crumbled blue cheese
  • 2 heads butter lettuce (or 2 bags of pre-washed)
  • ½ small head of radicchio
  • 2 cups cooked blacked lentils
  • 1 -pint cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 medium ripe Haas avocado, cubed
  • 2 cucumbers, peeled, de-seeded and small diced
  • ¼ red onion, sliced thin or use a mandolin
  • 4 red radishes, sliced thin or use a mandolin
  • ½ cup fresh, flat leaf parsley leaves
  • ½ cup fresh basil, chiffonade into 1/2 inch piece
  • Additional blue cheese and black pepper to garnish

Instructions

  1. For the dressing. Add the white wine vinegar, lemon juice, shallot, garlic, sea salt, pepper, and water to the blender. Blend on high till shallot and garlic are incorporated. Slowly drizzle in smoked olive oil. Add blue cheese and pulse till incorporated but still chunky. Set aside.
  2. Tear butter lettuce and radicchio into bite size pieces and add to a large bowl. Add sliced tomatoes, diced cucumbers, radish, parsley, basil. Toss lightly with dressing. Distribute into 4 salad bowls.
  3. Top each salad with ½ cup lentils, diced avocado, and additional blue cheese crumble to garnish. Top with additional parsley and basil as desired.

Notes

If you have a mandolin, shave your red onion on the mini, or most thin setting. Mandolin the red radishes as well. If the taste of red onion is too sharp for you, soak in water for 20 minutes before adding to the salad.

Keywords: butter lettuce salad, bib lettuce salad, boston lettuce salad, lentil salad with blue cheese, blue cheese vinaigrette, smoky blue cheese dressing, smoky blue cheese vinaigrette, healthy blue cheese dressing

Did you make this recipe?

Tag @WhitneyAronoff on Instagram and hashtag it #starseedkitchen

Thank you for reading. Follow me on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest for more Starseed Kitchen inspiration.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hi, I’m Whitney Aronoff, a Holistic Chef based in Laguna Beach, California. I graduated from Southern Methodist University with a degree in Communications, and went on to the health supportive culinary school, The Natural Gourmet Institute, in New York City. I work as a personal chef and teach cooking classes, with a focus on healthy, whole foods cooking.

My goal is to help people feel their best by sharing the delicious, healthy recipes I prepare weekly for my clients. I want you to have the energy to live your best life and fulfil your dreams. As we become more conscious and make more quality food choices, our body, mind, soul and the planet benefits.


  • garlic butter shrimp (recipe above)
  • 1 cup 50/50 salad mix (Spring Mix and Baby Spinach)
  • 8 slices cucumber, skin peeled then cut in half
  • 2 small radishes
  • 1/4 medium avocado
  • 2-3 oz Kerrygold Blarney Castle cheese
  • lime vinegar dressing (recipe below)
  • juice of 2 limes
  • 2 tablespoons extra light virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon white wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper

Easter Salad Tips

Easter salads are truly spring salads served on a wonderful day for family and friends. In addition, it is the perfect time to show off pretty plates and bowls filled with fresh vegetables, greens, fruits, nuts, and herbs. Read the tips below for showing creating the best Easter Spring salads!

Make Your Dressing

Do your best to whip up your own homemade salad dressing recipes. Most recipes will have instructions on simple vinaigrettes or ingredients that compliment the salad. However, just olive oil, vinegar, and a little honey or sugar work well with salad greens!

Up Your Salad Greens Game

Yes, we all know romaine and iceberg lettuces because they are familiar to prepare. But the lettuce world is vast and exciting, with color, textures, and flavors. Try arugula, red leaf, watercress, spinach, butter lettuce, and really shake it up with a mix of a few that you love!

Fall In LOVE With Herbs

Favorites often used in the kitchen are parsley, cilantro, and dill. Let’s not forget our gorgeous friends’ basil and mint, both come in a variety of colors, tastes, and scents. Fresh herbs are truly the queens of the salad world, unique, and a celebration on the palate with each bite. Need more herb salad ideas? Try thyme, oregano, lemon balm, and tarragon!

Learn To Love Variety

Yes, we all know the “garden” salad of our youth, available at nearly every restaurant in some form or fashion. This salad usually has some chopped lettuce, carrot slivers, tomato, a slice of a cucumber, a couple of red cherry tomatoes, and a handful of croutons, with your choice of bottled dressings. (Are your ears burning, you Ranch Dressing lovers?) Let’s shake it up! Instead of lettuce, give cucumbers or snap peas a chance to be the star of the show! Get wild, add fruit, nuts, cooked grains, and bread. Instead of heavy cream dressings, use olive oil and freshly squeezed lime or lemon as the dressings, and top this fresh goodness with toasted pita, or toasted almond slivers and dried cranberries. After all, “variety is the spice of life”!

Taste the greens, do they need more seasoning?

Don’t shy away from a little salt and pepper for the greens, or think outside the salt and pepper and try a hint of paprika with a squeeze of lime or Sumac, which has a lovely tangy flavor and tastes amazing on a salad!

Easter and Spring Salad Recipe Ideas

Enjoy this list of amazing Easter spring salad recipes. Grab ideas for your family’s brunch or dinner. Make a variety of lovely salads because this is a special time of year! We always have several healthy recipes on the Easter table. I make potato salad in an enormous glass bowl and it last there all of Easter weekend!

I will also include a couple of beautiful salads that eat like a meal! These are perfect salad for brunch recipes and salad for dinner recipes. Because honestly, green salads are amazing, but it is just nice to have a variety of beautiful Easter salads.

The Best Easter Salad Recipes

I hope you find some easy recipes for a delicious salad. And hope you discover simple and yummy Easter side dishes to fill your table with the joy of the season!

Other Popular Side Dish Recipes for Easter


10 Must-Make Radish Recipes For Spring

The humble radish is too often an afterthought. Radishes are part of the Brassicaceae family nutritional superstars like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, cauliflower, and others fall under the same umbrella. That means radishes are a surefire source of vitamin C, fiber, folate, potassium, and other essentials.

Plus, the peppery flavor adds a savory bite to any dish, for very, very few calories. (No need to count calories with the easy 10-minute meals and 10-minute workouts in Prevention's bestselling Fit in 10 plan. Try it today for FREE and get ready to buy smaller pants!)

Unlike other root veggies that bulk up pans of roasted autumn produce or wintertime stews, the radish is a spring superstar. Here are a few tasty ways to use it this season.

This is one of the easiest ways to enjoy fresh spring radishes. You can find Easter Egg radishes in pretty pink, purple, and white hues at the market in April and May, but any small, thin-skinned variety will do.

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes
SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS:
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
½ c crumbled goat cheese, room temperature
1 c loosely packed watercress sprigs, tough stems discarded
¼ tsp kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling
8 slices baguette
8 lg Easter Egg or other radishes, thinly sliced

DIRECTIONS:
In the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade, combine the butter, cheese, watercress, and salt. Pulse until blended into a paste. Spread bread slices with cress butter. Top with radish slices and sprinkle with salt.

NUTRITION 267 cal, 7 g pro, 24 g carb, 2.2 g fiber, 0.7 g sugars, 16 g fat, 10 g sat fat, 465 mg sodium

This is a lightened up version of the Mexican pork dish carnitas, which is simmered in its own fat. The toasted oregano adds a nice authentic touch. To ensure a terrific fiber boost, look for low-carb tortillas that offer about 50 calories and 8 grams fiber.

PREP TIME: 12 minutes
COOK TIME: 35 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 47 minutes
SEVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS

PORK:
1 ½ tsp paprika
¼ tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp dry mustard
½ tsp ground red pepper
1 ¼ lb trimmed pork tenderloin
1 Tbsp olive oil
8 low-carb whole grain tortillas (6"-7" diameter)

SALAD:
¼ tsp dried oregano
1 ripe med avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, and cut into 1/4" chunks (here's a great reason to eat an entire avocado a day)
½ c sliced radishes
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice

FOR THE PORK
1. HEAT an outdoor grill to medium. In a cup, mix the paprika, salt, garlic powder, mustard, and red pepper. Rub all over the pork drizzle with the oil. Stack the tortillas and wrap in foil to heat on the grill.
2. GRILL the pork, turning 2 or 3 times, for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part registers 150°F to 155°F. Transfer to a cutting board and let stand for 10 minutes for easier slicing. Meanwhile, place the tortillas on a cool corner of the grill to warm for about 10 minutes.

FOR THE SALAD
1. COOK the oregano over medium heat in a small skillet, stirring often, for 2 to 3 minutes, until it smells toasty. Tip into a cup. In a medium bowl, mix the avocado, radishes, scallions, lime juice, and toasted oregano. Cut the pork on an angle into thin slices and cut larger slices in half. Pour the pork juices into the salad.
2. PLACE a tortilla on a work surface. Arrange some pork on the bottom half top with some of the salad and roll up, folding in the sides. Repeat with the remaining tortillas, pork, and salad. Serve right away.

NUTRITION 377 cal, 36 g pro, 39 g carb, 6 g fiber, 0.7 g sugars, 13 g fat, 2 g sat fat, 499 mg sodium

Crisp, light, and refreshing­&mdasheverything a salad should be. The radishes, peas, and mint make for a downright tantalizing combination. Perfect for a festive meal. (Prevention Premium shows you how to take a new spin on egg salad.)

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes
SERVINGS: 8

INGREDIENTS

DRESSING:
1 Tbsp sherry or wine vinegar
1 Tbsp chopped fresh mint
¼ tsp salt
¼ c + 1 Tbsp olive oil

SALAD:
8 c mixed spring greens
1 lb fresh peas, shelled (about 1 c), or 1/4 lb snow peas, cut up, or a combination
5 radishes, sliced
1 Tbsp chopped fresh mint

DIRECTIONS:
1. PREPARE DRESSING:
Put vinegar, mint, and salt in large bowl. Slowly pour in oil while whisking.
2. MAKE SALAD: Add greens, peas, radishes, and mint to dressing, toss, and serve.

NUTRITION 100 cal, 2 g pro, 4.5 g carb, 2.2 g fiber, 1.5 g sugars, 9 g fat, 1 g sat fat, 89 mg sodium

This easy-to-transport noodle bowl is delicious eaten right away at room temperature or straight out of the office fridge. It makes good use of leftover grilled or poached chicken, but a purchased rotisserie bird works just as well. (Got more chicken? Here are 11 fast meals you can make with rotisserie chicken.)

PREP TIME: 20 minutes
COOK TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes
SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS
¼ c almond butter
2 Tbsp honey
2 tsp reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 tsp rice vinegar
6 oz soba noodles
2 c shredded cooked chicken breast
¾ c grated carrots
½ yellow bell pepper, very thinly sliced (about 2/3 cup)
¼ c sliced almonds, toasted
8 scallions, white and some green, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
3 radishes, very thinly sliced (about 1/3 cup)
2 Tbsp chopped cilantro

DIRECTIONS:
1. WHISK together the almond butter, honey, soy sauce, vinegar, and 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl.
2. BRING a large pot of water to a boil on high heat. Add the noodles and cook per package directions. Place in a colander, rinse with cold water, and drain thoroughly.
3. COMBINE the noodles and the almond butter mixture in a large bowl, tossing to coat. Stir in the chicken, carrots, bell pepper, almonds, scallions, radishes, and cilantro. Divide among 4 bowls and serve.

NUTRITION 449 cal, 34 g pro, 50 g carb, 4 g fiber, 12 g sugars, 15.5 g fat, 2 g sat fat, 849 mg sodium

Radishes are often overlooked for use in hot preparations, but they cook up beautifully. Adding the greens makes for a lovely side dish that's ideal with lamb, steak, or roasted fish. These tasty radishes can be paired with an entrée, or double the serving and enjoy them as a snack.

PREP TIME: 7 minutes
COOK TIME: 23 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes
SERVINGS: 2

INGREDIENTS
1 bunch radishes with greens (about 1/2 lb)
¼ c water
1 Tbsp honey
1 tsp grape-seed or canola oil
½ tsp caraway seeds
Pinch of sea salt
⅛ tsp freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp Champagne vinegar or white wine vinegar

DIRECTIONS:
1. TRIM
and wash the radishes, and cut them into quarters. Wash the greens but do not dry them. Set them aside to drain.
2. IN a medium skillet set over low heat, warm the water, honey, and oil. When the honey has melted, add the radishes and stir to coat. Increase the heat to medium-low, cover, and cook, stirring often, for about 20 minutes, or until the radishes are crisp-tender and the glaze is clinging to them.
3. STIR in the caraway seeds, radish greens, a pinch of salt, and the pepper. Cook, stirring constantly, for about 3 minutes, or until the greens have wilted and the caraway is fragrant. Stir in the vinegar and serve.

NUTRITION 78 cal, 1.5 g pro, 14 g carb, 2.7 g fiber, 11 g sugars, 2.5 g fat, 0.3 g sat fat, 106 mg sodium

This salad is inspired by Tunisian arrangements of overlapping layers of thinly sliced vegetables, including fennel. The lemon dressing is peppered with the minced fronds, and because the fennel is raw and crisp, you'll want only the most tender parts of the bulb for this salad.

You can vary this to reflect your garden and palate. Add all kinds of peppers if you have them include tomatoes or lemon cucumbers. &ldquoFrench Breakfast&rdquo radishes with their scarlet tips are beautiful, as are red onions tossed in vinegar first to make them mellow.

PREP TIME: 12 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 12 minutes
SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE DRESSING:
1 tsp lemon zest
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
4 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp chopped fennel greens

FOR THE SALAD:
1 sm red onion, peeled and thinly sliced in rounds
White or rice wine vinegar, as needed
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded, veined, and thinly sliced
2 sm fennel bulbs (about 1/2 pound total, trimmed), thinly sliced lengthwise
8 &ldquoFrench Breakfast&rdquo radishes
12 olives, green and black, mixed
2 hard-cooked eggs, quartered
1 sm can tuna, drained
1 Tbsp capers

MAKE THE DRESSING
1. COMBINE the lemon zest, juice, oil, ¼ teaspoon salt and some freshly ground pepper in a small bowl. Whisk vigorously until smooth and well blended. Stir in the fennel greens.

MAKE THE SALAD
1. TOSS the onion slices in a few tablespoons vinegar and set aside to marinate (turning occasionally so they color brightly) while you assemble the salad.
2. ARRANGE the pepper rings and top with the sliced fennel. Intersperse the radishes (scarlet ends facing outwards) with the olives around the edge. Arrange the hard-cooked eggs attractively in clusters of twos or threes, and mound the tuna in the center. Scatter the capers over the tuna. Drain the onions and set them around or over the salad.
3. SPOON the dressing over all. Add a further pinch or two of salt and pepper, and serve.

NUTRITION 276 cal, 14.5 g pro, 9 g carb, 2.2 g fiber, 2 g sugars, 21 g fat, 31 g sat fat, 505 mg sodium

This Vietnamese-inspired sandwich balances spicy sauce with the crisp, cool, crunch of fresh radishes and carrots. Cilantro and mint add even more flavor for zero calories, plus a dose of vitamins A and C.

PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 25 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 40 minutes
SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS
1 med carrot, thinly sliced
5 radishes, trimmed and sliced
4 Tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
1 lb thin-sliced boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ c reduced-fat mayonnaise
½ tsp Sriracha (hot sauce) (here are 25 more things you can do with Sriracha)
4 mini French baguettes, split
¼ c fresh cilantro leaves
¼ c fresh mint leaves

DIRECTIONS:
1. TOSS
carrot and radishes with 2 Tbsp of the vinegar in bowl. Let stand, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes to pickle.
2. COMBINE chicken, oil, garlic, and remaining 2 Tbsp vinegar in zip-top bag, massaging to coat. Let stand 15 minutes. Mix mayo and Sriracha in bowl.
3. HEAT broiler. Remove chicken from marinade (discard marinade) and put on baking sheet. Broil 6" from heat, turning, until golden and cooked through, 8 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.
4. SANDWICH chicken, spicy mayo, pickled veggies, and herbs in baguettes.

NUTRITION 377.5 cal, 31 g pro, 38 g carb, 2 g fiber, 4.5 g sugars, 11 g fat, 2.2 g sat fat, 942 mg sodium

Imported farmed shrimp has raised red flags at the FDA because of concerns about the use of banned antibiotics, so when buying shrimp, look for wild or farmed varieties from the US (here&rsquos what you need to know about buying the safest, most eco-friendly shrimp). They contribute a filling 15 g protein to this spring salad for less than 200 calories.

PREP TIME: 20 minutes
COOK TIME: 10 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes
SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS
1 lb large (21-30 count) shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tsp lime zest
½ tsp coriander
½ tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp cayenne
½ tsp kosher salt
½ tsp black pepper
¼ c buttermilk
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp lime juice
3 c baby gem or butter lettuce
½ c fresh cilantro
4 radishes, sliced
2 scallions, sliced

DIRECTIONS:
1. SOAK
4 wooden skewers 20 minutes.
2. HEAT oven broiler to high. Toss shrimp with zest, spices, and ¼ tsp each of the salt and pepper and thread onto skewers.
3. COAT sheet pan with cooking spray, add shrimp, and broil until opaque, 4 minutes, flipping halfway.
4. WHISK buttermilk, oil, lime juice, and remaining salt and pepper.
5. DIVIDE lettuce, cilantro, radishes, and scallions among 4 plates. Top with shrimp and dressing.

NUTRITION 183 cal, 15 g pro, 4 g carb, 1 g fiber, 1.5 g sugars, 12 g fat, 1.5 g sat fat, 824 mg sodium

Short, sturdy pasta shapes like gemelli or rotini work best for pasta salads, because the vegetables and dressings get caught in the nooks and crannies, making each bite flavorful. Ramp up the nutrition in this bowl by using whole-wheat pasta, which adds extra fiber to help you stay full. (Or, check out one of these 10 pasta recipes that won't leave you bloated.)

PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 15 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes
SERVINGS: 6

INGREDIENTS
¾ lb asparagus, trimmed
3 oz goat cheese or part-skim ricotta
¼ c extra virgin olive oil
4 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp heavy cream
5 pepperoncini, rinsed, seeded, and chopped
¾ lb gemelli or rotini
10 oz frozen sweet peas, thawed
5 oz baby arugula, chopped
1 c sliced radishes1 c chopped chives

DIRECTIONS:
1. COOK
asparagus in large pot of boiling water until tender, 3 minutes. Transfer asparagus to bowl of ice water, reserving cooking water (do not empty pot). Drain cooled asparagus and cut into 1½" pieces.
2. WHISK cheese, oil, juice, cream, and ½ cup of the cooking water in large bowl. Stir in pepperoncini.
3. RETURN water in pot to a boil. Add pasta and cook per package directions, stirring in peas during last minute of cooking time. Drain in colander and add to bowl with asparagus, arugula, radishes, and chives. Toss until just combined. Season.

NUTRITION 406 cal, 14 g pro, 53 g carb, 5.5 g fiber, 5.5 g sugars, 15.5 g fat, 5 g sat fat, 256 mg sodium

Forgo processed veggies patties for this easy, fresh option, which turns meatless into max taste by mixing beans with scallions, carrots, and walnuts. Finish it off with a topping of creamy tahini sauce and fresh cucumber and radish.

PREP TIME: 10 minutes
COOK TIME: 20 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes
SERVINGS: 4

INGREDIENTS
1 Tbsp ground flaxseed meal
¼ c tahini
4 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp honey
2 c rinsed and drained canned chickpeas
½ c roughly chopped walnuts
½ c shredded carrots
3 scallions, roughly chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ c cooked brown rice
¼ c chopped parsley
1 tsp ground cumin
¾ tsp kosher salt
¾ tsp black pepper
½ tsp cinnamon
4 hamburger rolls
4 leaves lettuce
⅓ cucumber, sliced
2 radishes, sliced

DIRECTIONS:
1. IN
small bowl, combine flaxseed meal and 3 Tbsp warm water. Let stand. In another small bowl, combine tahini, lemon juice, and honey. Set aside.
2. IN bowl of food processor, combine chickpeas, walnuts, carrots, scallions, and garlic. Puree until almost smooth. Transfer to medium bowl and stir in rice, parsley, cumin, salt, pepper, cinnamon, and reserved flax-water mixture. Chill at least 1 hour. Form into 4 equal patties.
3. LIGHTLY coat large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat to medium. Cook patties until golden on both sides and heated through, 8 to 10 minutes. Serve on rolls topped with tahini spread, lettuce, cucumber, and radishes.

NUTRITION 590 cal, 18 g pro, 81 g carb, 14 g fiber, 9 g sugars, 25 g fat, 2.5 g sat fat, 838 mg sodium


Springtime Butter Lettuce Salad with Herbs

It’s springtime. We Californians have stopped clinging to even a hope of winter (though a late Alaskan rainstorm this week has been very welcome!) and even in Boston, where it seemed like winter would never end, I’m beginning to sense a new hopefulness in their tone. Even though I live in a place where winter is more of an abstract idea, I can’t help feeling a little friskier in spring and I start feeling spring cravings – lilacs and peonies and daffodils, pedicures, pink shirts, strawberries, eating brunch outside, earl grey tea parties, and salad. After months of hearty root vegetables and rib sticking brassicas, springtime brings a craving for fresh salads, with delicate, ruffled, lettuces and bright flavors. This butter lettuce or Boston lettuce salad with fresh herbs, radishes and avocados is one of my favorite salads, and it is so perfect for this time of year.

Butter Lettuce (known as Boston Lettuce on the East Coast and sometimes Bibb Lettuce) is one of my favorites for salads – it’s mild, crisp without being crunchy, and makes for lovely, delicate salads. Since it’s usually sold in full heads with the roots on, it stays fresh much longer in the fridge than most lettuces. And the pale green color is just what you expect from a salad – especially in the springtime.

This salad, which I got from Dana, who got it from a friend of hers, who got it from Ashley, makes great use of butter lettuce’s best qualities – the mild flavor is enhances the handfuls of fresh herbs, and the crisp texture contrasts wonderfully with creamy avocado and crunchy radish. It’s one of those salads that will up your salad game, and is more than the sum of its parts.


Drum Beets - Seattle Area Personal Chef

8) radishes, any color
zest of 1 lemon
1/4 cup tarragon white wine vinegar (store bought or homemade)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 cup chives, chopped at diagonal
2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh tarragon, finely chopped
sea salt & fresh pepper to taste
optional: pea vine flowers & chive blossom petals

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Comments

Compliments to you for this easy-to-assemble and lovely recipe. I used baby lettuces, Easter radishes, and herbs from my container garden. The lemon zest and chive blossom toppings made the salad beautiful to behold. All the ingredients worked perfectly together, and I especially appreciated how the honey in the vinaigrette mellowed the tarragon so that it became a wisp of flavor rather than a dominant taste. I look forward to making this elegant salad again. And again! Thank you, Aubrey, for sharing it. From, Tara in St. Louis

Such eloquent words to describe this salad! You should be a food writer (if you aren't already)! Glad you enjoyed the recipe, Tara!



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