A while back, I was visiting my friend Ali in Brooklyn, and, when lunchtime rolled around, we got a salad from her friend Anna’s unbelievably good Italian restaurant Al Di La (if you are ever near there, please try to stop by and eat even just one thing from her menu). This salad was called Winter White and if I’d never eaten Anna’s food before, I would not have been enticed by the description of it: raw vegetables, mostly roots (turnips, celery root, and radishes), but also fennel, cauliflower, fennel, and leeks, thinly sliced, lightly dressed, and topped with a bit of crumbled blue cheese. It sounds about as exciting as notebook paper, but it was, of course, extremely, shockingly delicious. And now I’m a little obsessed.
|We don't exactly scream "salad". . .|
|but we clean up nice!|
this, which Ben makes for us in big batches every five days or so) and add cheese or not (a handful of coarsely grated parmesan is our favorite right now). A couple of anchovies would be heavenly—but I defer to the vegetarian in the house.
p.s. Thank you all for your sweet anniversary (bone-iversary! you remembered!) wishes. xo
Winter Bright Salad
Makes 4 servings (this is a dense salad)
The herbs and cheese are optional here. Leftovers are fantastic.
Enough winter veggies (carrots, beets, turnips, rutabagas, radishes, celery root, parsnips, cauliflower, and/or fennel) scrubbed or peeled and finely sliced, julienned or grated to make around 2 or 3 packed cups
A good, garlicky or shallot-y vinaigrette, see below (you'll use around 1/3-1/2 cup, or so)
½ cup slivered parsley (or a couple tablespoons of another fresh herb of your choosing)
1/3 cup coarsely grated parmesan or crumbled blue cheese or feta (optional)
Toss the veggies with some of the dressing to taste then, um, taste it. If it needs a little more something to brighten the flavor, consider adding an extra splash of vinegar and/or a pinch of salt rather than more of the vinaigrette. Add the parsley and/or cheese, toss again, and taste. Serve right away, or cover it and eat it later (but taste it again at that point--you may need to drain off some liquid and redress it).
Actually, I'll just re-post the vinaigrette here, for the sake of ease. You won't use it all, but leftovers are so great to have around.
Makes 1 cup
1 clove garlic, minced or put through a garlic press
1/3 cup white-wine vinegar
2/3 cup olive oil
¼ teaspoon dried marjoram (or oregano, if you prefer)
2 teaspoons kosher salt (or half as much are you even paying attention?)
Shake it up in a jar. Store it in the fridge.