As a defiant response to sad desk lunches, the Food52 team works to keep our midday meals both interesting and pretty. Each week, we'll be sharing our happiest desk lunches—and we want to see yours, too.
Today: Sarah Britton of the blog and book My New Roots eats and cooks with us.
Sarah Britton of My New Roots taught me to put black beans in my cookies (not just my brownies), to bake bread without flour, and to not bake my cheesecake. She has a spunky attitude that makes me excited about psyllium and turmeric and celeriac. Her food is scary healthy, but it tastes good. She knows what she’s doing.
Since I’ve divulged the degree of my girl crush (oh, did I mention she’s beautiful, too?), I’ll just admit that deciding what to cook for her took up so much of my week. Do we cook from our website? But what about her recipes? You know she likes them, but it's always a risk to cook from a guest's own recipes—what if they don't turn out as she intended them to?
The solution: her recipes—that you hope she will cook. You will make her cook. But Sarah is one of those people who cooks as a therapy, who cooks to ground as well as nourish. She welcomed the opportunity to make her poached radish and dandelion green salad from her new book—albeit in a white silk shirt and heels, in an unfamiliar kitchen, with ten people watching her. She poached radishes in butter with garlic while chatting with us, telling us stories about shooting in the winter in Copenhagen and wowing us with a nutritional fact for every ingredient in her salad—a salad that was a somersault of textures and sweet and savory: soft radishes lightly sweet from maple syrup, the zing of vinegar, with crisp dandelion greens that just barley wilted when the butter that poached the radishes became dressing.
We marveled; Sarah ate dandelion greens with her hands.
Okay, so we did prep some of Sarah’s recipes ahead of time to accompany the salad: Her Life-Changing Loaf almost made more sense in cracker form; when chewed, the crackers break down into a jumble of nuts and seeds, which is kind of wonderful when you’ve dipped said crackers in an herbaceous chermoula yogurt. It’s like beelining for a dip that’s been garnished with toasty nuts and seeds, cutting out the middle men of a muddying cracker or utensil.
It was all very good. And I only mentioned I was a fan girl, like, five times.
Serves 2 to 3
1 bunch (1⁄2 pound / 250 grams) radishes, tops removed
2 tablespoons ghee (butter will also work)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pinch fine sea salt
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons raw honey or pure maple syrup
1 bunch dandelion greens (about 3 cups)
Smoked sea salt
Photos courtesy of Sarah Britton