- Amanda

Merrill and I are always on the lookout for a new "office." The requirements of our offices are that they have wifi, good food, little or no music and chairs with cushions (for hours of sitting) -- a combination that's surprisingly difficult to find on the otherwise swell island of Manhattan.

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Recently, we struck gold at Morandi, a Keith McNally joint, that has, in addition to all the above requirements, good subway access and the occasional fascinating-yet-worrisome celebrity sighting (Calvin Klein last week, Dwayne Johnson a few weeks earlier).

Morandi also has exceptional food -- a breakfast pizza topped with eggs and lardo, olives ascolane (arielleclementine we've sampled these in your honor -- theirs are stuffed with pork), and farro salad (Merrill's fave). The other day, I couldn't resist the "meat salad" -- which was just that, a whole mess of meats (beef, chicken, salumi, pate) with some peppery watercress and sweet potato slipped in and tossed with a creamy, rich dressing. I should have ordered a glass of red wine to go with it and then retired to my apartment for a nap. But no -- we had internet-ing to do!

I've since come up with my own version, which isn't quite as rich, using slightly different means to get to the same end: an all-in-one salad. Make this when you have leftovers of lamb or chicken, or mix it up and use whatever meats you have on hand.

All-in-One Salad

Serves 2 as a main course

  • Five to six 1/2-inch slices baguette
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cups watercress (broken into small stems)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 2 cups cubed cooked lamb and chicken, and thinly sliced salumi (I'd do 1 cup lamb, 1/2 cup each chicken and salumi)
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream or mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Grated zest of 1 tangerine
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Heat the oven to 400 degees. Make the croutons: rub the baguette slices with the garlic clove, then cut the slices into 1/2-inch cubes. Measure out 2 cups. (Eat the rest while you prepare the salad.) Spread on a baking sheet and toss with the olive oil. Toast the croutons in the oven until golden, tossing once, 5 to 10 minutes. Let cool.

2. In a large salad bowl, combine the watercress, celery, meats and croutons.

3. In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream, heavy cream, horseradish, lemon juice and tangerine zest. Season to taste with salt and pepper (and feel free to add more lemon juice and horseradish as desired).

4. Pour the dressing over the watercress and meats and toss until lightly dressed. Taste and adjust seasoning. Let sit for 15 minutes before serving.

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A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).

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pTsaldari March 21, 2010
This isn't a salad, its a feast! I've already printed it out and will serve it for brunch for my writer friends. I adore this blog, one of my very favorites.
Thank you again,
Amanda H. March 21, 2010
Thank you! And hope you and your friends enjoy it. I found that tangerine zest really sings if you let the salad sit (in the fridge) for a few hours before serving.
TheWimpyVegetarian March 20, 2010
This looks great - and just in time! I'm having a small dinner party tomorrow night and cooking (big surprise :-)) lamb. This will be perfect for my lunch on Monday with the leftovers. And maybe have one of my remaining blood oranges on the side. Yum!
Amanda H. March 21, 2010
That sounds great -- you could even substitute the blood orange for the tangerine.
coffeefoodwrite March 20, 2010
This looks lovely! One of my favorite things is making a nice spinach salad for lunch, usually drizzled with a little olive oil and lemon and then topped with whatever vegetables and meat I have on hand from last night's meal. Looking forward to trying this one! =)
lastnightsdinner March 20, 2010
I'm making your spinach salad tomorrow - got a gorgeous bag of spinach and a red onion from the farmers' market today and I can't wait!
coffeefoodwrite March 21, 2010
Hi LND! I'm so happy that you are making the spinach salad. Can't wait to hear how it turns out and your comments. Hope you enjoy it!
Amanda H. March 21, 2010
Thanks -- enjoy! And just saw the photos of your spinach salad on LND's flickr page -- pretty!
coffeefoodwrite March 21, 2010
Wow! Thnx LND for featuring the recipe on your flickr page-- send me an e-mail and let me know how it worked!
Cara E. March 19, 2010
That's usually my strategy: with lettuce as the vehicle, I don't feel bad at all about piling on the goodies. Today's salad had olive-oil soaked sauteed eggplant, among other things. But all on top of lettuce!
Amanda H. March 19, 2010
That sounds pretty great.
arielleclementine March 19, 2010
thanks for the shout out! this salad sounds dynamite :)
Amanda H. March 19, 2010
Rhonda35 March 19, 2010
Meat salad? A carnivore's dream! You could also use the horseradish dressing posted the other day since the components are similar.
Amanda H. March 19, 2010
I was thinking that, but didn't want to seem lazy by referring people to that recipe -- but yes, everyone, you can also use the wildcard horseradish dressing!