Happy 2018, everyone! I know I’m a little late with that sentiment, but things have been busy around here; baking projects have been relegated to the backseat for a moment. However, I thought I’d share this salad with you, mostly so you don’t think my diet consists only of baked goods, but also because it’s one of my favorites and I thought it deserved a chance in the spotlight.
This is a salad so simple I wonder if it can even be called one; comprised of just greens, grapefruit, olives and a little bit of fresh Parmesan, it is less a salad than it is a combination of utterly straightforward ingredients that are more than the sum of their parts when put together.
Here, the quality of each ingredient matters. Buy organic greens. Make sure they are fresh, sweet, crispy, slightly bitter. Use a fat grapefruit, one that is pink and bursting with mouthpuckering juice.
Get good olives. I like Castelvetranos. They are meaty, with a pleasing chew, and less briny, more clean and salty. A wonderful counterpoint to the sweet-tart fruit. The Parmesan should be the good stuff- properly aged, nutty.
The dressing, too, is utterly simple; less a dressing than it is a slender approximation of one and it’s quickly become my favorite way to season all greens. Made with merely fruity olive oil, acidic lemon juice, flaky salt and a little bit of pepper for heat, it brings together all of the elements of this salad for a dish that is clean, refreshing, and invigorating.
I love all the flavors that are at play here: the fresh greens with the olive oil, the slightly bracing grapefruit and lemon juice, the salty Parmesan and olives. You could try endives in place of the greens and blood oranges in place of the grapefruit- anything goes, as long as each ingredient is fresh and of the best quality.
It’s a 1 + 1 = 3 type of salad. And ok, I am not the best at math, but I am good at salad. Take it from this one. The equation stands.
Yields: 2 servings
Why I love this salad: made with few, simple yet delicious ingredients, this salad is tart with lemon juice, fruity with olive oil and grapefruit, and salty with olives and Parmesan and fruity with
For the salad:
- 3 cups mixed greens, washed
- 1 medium grapefruit, peeled and supremed
- 1/3 cup Castelvetrano olives, pitted and smashed
- hunk of Parmesan, for grating
For the dressing:
- juice of 1/2 a lemon
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon Piment d’espelette
- flaky salt, such as Maldon, to taste
- fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- Toss all the salad ingredients except for the Parmesan together in a medium sized bowl.
- Dress with the lemon juice, olive oil, Piment d’espelette and season with salt and pepper to taste. Shave Parmesan into the salad and toss to combine.
- Plate salad and top with more shavings of Parmesan. Enjoy!