This salad stems from a Belarusian recipe.I believe the name comes from the look of the salad, like a flower fern with all its julienned ingredients. But I have been inspired to add pickled fiddlehead ferns, chopped egg, and small seckel pears to it. I suggest a vinaigrette for the dressing. This makes a perfect picnic because it really travels well. You can easily pack it in a tiffin, but then plate it. You can vary the types of meat, but just make sure everything follows the shoestring coarse julienned form. You want a combination of fresh and pickled vegetables. —Sagegreen
vinegar and water in a 1:3 ratio
small sweet onion, cut thinly into rings and halved
excellent quality fatty ham, julienned
small heirloom tomatoes, peeled and cut into long pieces ( I added the excess juice in with the dressing)
pickled fiddlehead ferns or asparagus, optional
pickled green tomatoes, julienned, optional
Brimskaya Brinza cheese, julienned
fresh or freshly pickled refrigerator cucumbers, julienned
small dill gherkins, julienned
chopped black olives, optional
finely chopped dill, chives, and flat leaf parsley
hard boiled egg, chopped
seckel pears, julienned and spritzed with fresh lemon juice
champagne or pear vinegar
acacia or other similar honey
small bit of white anchovy, finely minced and mashed, optional, but recommended
kosher or pink Himalayan salt to taste
fresh milled pepper to taste
hearty artisan bread slices, buttered on the side
serve on a bed of mixed seasonal greens, if desired
Marinate the onion rings in the water and vinegar mix for 2-3 hours. Then drain and mince finely.
Assemble all the salad ingredients together, add a dash of salt, and keep any greens you may want to use as a bed separate. Pack to travel. Keep salad chilled until serving.
Combine the vinegar and EVOO, mustard, and honey with optional anchovy. Season with salt and pepper. Feel free to include any excess tomato juice in the dressing. Pack the dressing to travel, so it can be shaken well and poured later.
When ready to eat, plate your salad, dress, and toss. Serve with hearty lightly buttered artisan bread.