Edamame & Pak Choi Salad

Hello,

This salad could take on many different names depending on the greens you have available: “Edamame & Kale Salad”, “Edamame & Swiss Chard Salad”, “Edamame & Arugula Salad”. I do like that you get the crunch from the stalks along with the tender greens when using pak choi, however. It is easy to toss together and can be altered in so many ways. If I had avocado on hand, I would have added it to the salad. I also think some shavings of Parmesan or other aged cheese would be great too.

We hope you enjoy it!

Edamame & Pak Choi Salad
makes 2 large or 4 small servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup shelled edamame, thawed if frozen
  • 1 small head of pak choi, thinly sliced, cleaned and drained well
  • 1 scarlet salad turnip, cut into quarters and thinly sliced
  • 1 medium scallion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon hemp seeds plus more for garnish
  • Splash of rice vinegar and vegetable oil
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper

Direction:

  • Toss together the edamame, pak choi, salad turnip, scallion and hemp seeds. Dress with a little rice vinegar and oil and salt and pepper to taste. Toss again and taste, adjusting seasoning as needed. Divide between plates and garnish with additional hemp seeds.

The Essential Elements to a Satisfying Salad

Hey!

Have you ever stopped to consider what makes a great salad? I am talking about salads you would eat as a meal and feel satisfied afterwards. I have been thinking of this lately as the “Fall into Greens” CSA is starting this week and we will soon have a lot more greens in our life (yay!). Let’s evaluate the Mango & Curried Chickpea Salad you see in the picture above in hopes you can make your own delicious salads without a recipe.

This salad is from one of my all time favorite cookbooks – Plenty More by Yotam Ottolenghi. It contains curry spiced chickpeas, blanched cauliflower, sauteed onion, fresh mangoes, hot green chile, cilantro, lime juice, and fresh baby spinach. Here is what I think makes this salad sound so amazing:

  • Both raw (spinach, mango) and cooked (cauliflower) textures
  • Hits on most of the 5 basic flavors – bitter (curry spices), sweet (mango), sour (lime juice), salty, umami
  • Ample amount of protein (chickpeas)
  • Cohesive dressing (here he just uses lime juice as there was enough oil used to prepare the other ingredients)

You can take this example and apply it to almost any salad you wish to prepare. Below I have listed different items you can use to achieve these fundamental elements.

  1. Raw Texture
    • Salad greens
      • Don’t limit salad greens to spinach/spring mix – add other raw greens such as kale, mustard, Swiss chard, arugula, radicchio
      • Toss fresh herbs in your green mix for another layer of flavor
    • Vegetables
      • I believe the vegetables listed below are great when added raw to a salad given they are thinly sliced or chopped into bite-sized pieces.
        •  Carrots
        • Radishes
        • Cabbage
        • Bell peppers
        • Cucumbers
        • Tomatoes
        • Fennel
        • Scallions
    •  Fruit
      • Same goes with fruit – just make sure they are cut into bite sized pieces.
        • Apples
        • Pears
        • Citrus – oranges, grapefruit
        • Melon – cantaloupe, watermelon
        • Stone fruit – peaches, plums, cherries, apricots
        • Mango
        • Pineapple
        • Figs
        • Grapes
        • Berries – strawberries, blackberries, blueberries
  2. Cooked Texture
    1. Vegetables – think of different ways to incorporate flavor into cooked vegetables – roasting, grilling, broiling, etc.
      • Potatoes
      • Sweet potatoes
      • Summer squash
      • Winter squash
      • Eggplant
      • Roasted red peppers
      • Broccoli
      • Cauliflower
      • Brussels sprouts
      • Beets
      • Asparagus
      • Artichokes
      • Green beans
      • Celery root
      • Corn
    2. Grains – cooked grains are a great way to add texture and extra nutrition – just make sure to use techniques that yield separate grains. Don’t forgot the taste and texture you can add with croutons and chips.
      • Quinoa
      • Barley
      • Rice
      • Hominy
      • Amaranth
      • Buckwheat
      • Teff
      • Wheat berries
      • Bread – croutons
      • Corn products – tortilla chips
    3. Protein (see section below)
  3. Savory Flavor (NOTE: I am combining umami, bitter and sour flavors in this section as there is a lot of crossover)
    • Vegetables
    • Meat / meat substitute
    • Mushrooms
    • Cheese
    • Olives
    • Capers
    • Sun-dried tomatoes
    • Miso
    • Tamarind
    • Wine
    • Citrus
  4. Sweet Flavor
    • Fruit – fresh, dried
    • Shredded coconut
    • Glazed nuts
    • Sweeteners added to your vinaigrette
      • Sugar – granulated, brown, coconut
      • Honey
      • Maple syrup
      • Sorghum
      • Jams and jelly
      • Sweet spices – cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice
  5. Protein
    • I don’t know about you but I need protein in a salad to make it a meal. Of course you can use different types of meat or fish but there are plenty of vegetarian options too:
      • Beans – chickpeas, black beans, pinto
      • Lentils – French lentils hold their shape really well and are a great source of protein
      • Quinoa
      • Tofu – I am partial to fried tofu when used in a salad
      • Tempeh
      • Seitan
      • Edamame
      • Nuts – peanuts, walnuts, almonds, cashews, pistachios
      • Seeds – sesame, sunflower, poppy, hemp
      • Cheese – goat, cheddar, feta
      • Eggs – hardboiled
  6. Cohesive Dressing
    •  Think of the dressing last as you can usually integrate flavors you may be missing elsewhere. For example, if you don’t have anything sweet in your salad, use a sweetened dressing. If you have a lot of cooked flavors, brighten up the salad with a more acidic dressing.
    • The ratio of 3 PARTS OIL to 1 PART ACID will give you a wonderful homemade dressing
      • Types of oil: olive oil, vegetable oil, hazelnut oil, walnut oil, sesame oil
      • Types of acid: white wine vinegar, red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, sherry vinegar, rice vinegar, lemon juice, lime juice, orange juice
      • Add mustard, yogurt, pureed avocado, fruit juice, jelly, honey, herbs, etc to add body / interest
    • Here are some of my favorite dressings:
      • Mustard-balsamic vinaigrette
        • Add mustard, minced shallot and thyme to a basic oil/vinegar mixture
        • Can add a savory element when needed
      • Herb vinaigrette
        • Add minced fresh herbs of choice to a basic oil/vinegar mixture
        • Can add freshness when needed
      • Citrus vinaigrette
        • Add citrus juice and/or grated zest in place of vinegar
        • Can add freshness and/or acidity when needed
      • Blue cheese dressing
        • Add creme fraiche and blue cheese crumbles
        • Can add richness to an otherwise lean salad

How do you make your salads satisfying? We would love to hear from you!


The Best Kale Salad

Hey!

A neighbor of mine raved about this salad and although I haven’t tried it myself yet, I wanted to pass it along. She was quite adamant that it was THE best kale salad and I trust her judgment 🙂 It would be a great way to use items from the “Fall into Greens” CSA. Have you signed up yet? Stop by and talk to Mark and Gina about it tomorrow at market!

I wish I could give proper credit to whoever created this recipe but I am not sure where it originated!

The Best Kale Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch curly or Dino kale
  • 1/4 head purple cabbage
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 carrot, julienned
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup roasted unsalted peanuts
  • 3 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 4 tablespoons warm water
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Directions:

  • De-stem and chop kale into small pieces. Shred cabbage on the large holes of a box grater. Mix together with red bell pepper, carrots, raisins and peanuts.
  • In a small food processor (or you can whisk by hand) combine remaining ingredients and process until fully blended.
  • Pour dressing over salad and massage for 1-2 minutes. Let the dressing soak in a bit before serving.

Fresh Tomato Salsa with Papalo

Hello!

I love fresh, easy to prepare meals, especially in the scorching heat of summer. It doesn’t get fresher than this quick, flavorful salsa. Pair with tortilla chips and a protein source (I would go for a black bean salad) and you have dinner! Margaritas wouldn’t hurt either 🙂

This salsa is unique with the addition of papalo, an intense herb somewhat similar to cilantro, but with an aroma and flavor all its own. It is also called papaloquelite, poreleaf, mampuito, summer cilantro, and Bolivian coriander. It is often used as an alternative to cilantro, which makes sense as it thrives in the summer heat when cilantro will bolt. For more information, including recipes, check out this site.

Fresh Tomato Salsa with Papalo

Recipe notes: 1) if you are inclined, you can drain the diced tomatoes for 30 minutes in a colander to make the salsa less watery (which might be desirable depending on how to plan to use the salsa); 2) the spiciness of jalapenos vary greatly, so I always recommend adding some of the minced flesh to start, taste, then add more flesh and/or seeds/ribs until the desired heat level is reached; 3) papalo has an intense flavor, so start with just a small amount and add more as desired. You can substitute cilantro but I would use 2-3 times the amount called for.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound firm, ripe tomatoes, cut into 1/2″ dice (see recipe note)
  • 1 medium jalapeno, cut in half, seeds/ribs removed, minced and reserved, flesh minced (see recipe note)
  • 1/3 cup minced red onion
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon minced papalo (see recipe note)
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced (about 1/2 teaspoon)
  • 4 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon table salt
  • Few grinds of fresh black pepper

Directions:

  • In a medium mixing bowl, add all ingredients and mix well to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. Best eaten fresh.