Farm Foodie: Summer Salad Daze
– Guest post by Debra Dubief, Full Circle “Farm Foodie”
We eat a lot of salads. Not because we should, because we love them – especially in summer when there is such a variety of greens to choose from. Summer lettuce definitely tastes different; the flavors so vibrant they barely need dressing. With greens this lush, sometimes a “honeymoon salad” (lettuce alone) suits our meal just fine. The rest of the time it’s hard to resist adding some fruits or vegetables. In addition to keeping our salads interesting, this is also a great way to use up those last few raspberries, that lone piece of stone fruit or maybe a leftover ear of corn.
Heavier greens with a little bite, like dandelion, radicchio or escarole pair wonderfully with really sweet fruits like berries, nectarines and peaches. Fresh fruit and a bit of balsamic vinegar deliciously soften the edges of those slightly bitter greens. With lighter fare, a sweet head of heirloom lettuce or freshly harvested salad mix pairs perfectly with tart plum slices or chopped fresh cherries.
If your grill is fired up, try tossing halved lettuce heads or stone fruits on it for a minute before they join your salad. Escarole and radicchio are both great on the grill and are fantastic tossed with grilled Walla Walla sweet onions and sliced plums. Some fresh ricotta would be nice with that if you have some. Hmmm, I think I feel an experiment coming on.