Rites of Spring Shaved Salad

By • May 13, 2016 0 Comments

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Author Notes: This is my young, tender, first-of-the-fresh green produce of spring salad. Very green and fresh in the mouth, it’s also creamy, crunchy with a tangy bite from the vinegar and Dijon. A crowd pleaser with lots of mumbled yummms at the table…every time.

This salad is a great ending to a grilled meat or fish dinner or a hearty casserole or cassoulet. It can also be served as a side and enjoyed as a one-dish dinner with a few grilled shrimp or a piece of grilled or broiled salmon, halibut or cobia (3 of my favorite fish).

Leftover dressing is also good when lightly drizzled over grilled shrimp, fish, chicken and steamed veggies like haricot vert.
Despina Yeargin

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Serves 6-8 or 4 as an entree

Caper Vinaigrette

  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup capers
  • 1 pinch salt & cracked pepper
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  1. Combine everything except the oil in a mason jar. Twist on the lid and shake, shake, shake!!!
  2. Add the olive oil and shake, shake, shake. Set aside until salad is ready to dress.
  3. Be sure to shake once more prior to pouring over the greens.

Vegetables

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and shaved into long tendrils
  • 1/4 bunch asparagus, washed, dried well and shaved (or cut) into long, thin pieces
  • 1 medium zucchini, washed, ends cut off and shaved into long slices. Shave down to where seeds begin and turn a quarter turn. Repeat. Repeat.
  • 1 medium yellow squash,washed, ends cut off and shaved into long slices like the zucchini
  • 1/4 of a large red onion, shaved
  • 3 radishes, shaved (cut off root end and use stalk end as a handle to guide the radishes over the blade of the mandoline)
  • 1 head of butter lettuce like Boston, Buttercrunch, etc. I like half Boston and half Red Leaf. Pull away the first layer of larger outer leaves, and tear off the inner leaves directly into the bowl after proper washing and drying.
  • 4-6 fronds of fresh dill, torn into smaller pieces. About 2 T when torn.
  • 3/4 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted and set aside
  • 1/2 cup shaved Parmesan, Asiago or Manchego cheese
  • 1 pinch sea salt & cracked black pepper (more to suit)
  1. Shave vegetables using a big peeler or a hand-held mandolin at thinnest setting. If the asparagus is pencil thin, use a sharp paring knife to slice in half and then half again. If you’re inclined to roughing it, add it as is. If part of the name is “pencil thin” it’s not that important to shave into a thinner portion.
  2. Using your hands, toss all ingredients in a large bowl. Top with salt and pepper and toss again.
  3. Shake dressing and pour two-thirds over the salad. Toss gently one last time, top with a few extra grinds of black pepper, and place on a large serving platter or large serving bowl with low sides. Serve with remaining dressing in a small pitcher for people who want a little more.

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