Habeas Brulee » Salads http://habeasbrulee.com Sun, 17 Mar 2013 03:04:28 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.21 Pistachio Wasabi Beets http://habeasbrulee.com/2013/01/07/pistachio-wasabi-beets/ http://habeasbrulee.com/2013/01/07/pistachio-wasabi-beets/#comments Mon, 07 Jan 2013 05:29:33 +0000 http://habeasbrulee.com/?p=725

This is another Dave invention, but of course. It’s sweet and spicy and we’ve made it a bunch of times over the past year, so it’s way past time for me to share it with you!

The spicy awesomeness of these beets comes from wasabi oil, which you can find locally if you live in a city with a large in Chinatown. If not, your alternatives are to order wasabi oil in Amazon (not the brand I have, but it’s probably about the same), or just use horseradish instead.

Pistachio Wasabi Beets
5 beets
1/2 C pistachios
3 tbsp sour cherry vinegar (red wine vinegar works fine, honestly)
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tsp wasabi oil (or less if you’re not so into the spicy)
flaky sea salt and pepper to taste

1. Preheat your oven to 375 F.

2. Cover a baking sheet with tinfoil. Wrap each beet individually in tinfoil (put it in the middle, then scrunch the edges together at the top) and place on the baking sheet. No oil needed – they’ll roast fine on their own.

3. Roast the beets in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour, until tender when you poke a fork in.

4. Peel the beets, then cut into 1/2″ cubes.

5. Crush the pistachios, either by chopping coarsely or using a mortar and pestle.

5. Mix everything together and season to taste.

6. Sprinkle extra pistachios on top right before serving if you care about things looking pretty.

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Lemony Pea and Radish Salad with Mint http://habeasbrulee.com/2012/12/09/lemony-pea-and-radish-salad-with-mint/ http://habeasbrulee.com/2012/12/09/lemony-pea-and-radish-salad-with-mint/#comments Mon, 10 Dec 2012 02:46:10 +0000 http://habeasbrulee.com/?p=693

Hi again! Sorry I’ve been missing for so long. I’ve had an extraordinary year, and mostly I just haven’t had a great setup for taking photos of all the wonderful food I’ve been cooking.

A friend scolded me and then mailed me a light box, with the condition that I use it to start posting my recipes here again for her to make. Um. Sorry, and thank you! It arrived two days ago, so please consider this my first grateful payment!

I am obsessed with this salad. It’s a pretty drastic adaptation from a recipe in one of the Ottolenghi cookbooks, which I’ve been obsessed with ever since I had the pleasure of eating at one of their locations when visiting London a few years ago. It’s vivid and intense and refreshing all at the same time.

In adapting it from the original, I removed green beans and baby chard (insufficiently crisp!), and added radishes (more crisp!) and lemon juice (more vivid!), and used mint (more refreshing!) instead of tarragon (insufficiently refreshing!).

Simple to make, and it simply wakes me up and makes me happy. Enjoy!

Lemony Pea and Radish Salad with Mint
(loosely adapted from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi)

~12 thinly sliced radishes (the pink-skinned, round-ish ones) (1 bunch, hereabouts)
1 1/2 C snow peas, trimmed (snap off and discard the hard ends)
1 lb fresh or frozen green peas (honestly, I use one bag of the frozen ones)
2 tsp coriander seeds, roughly crushed
1 tsp mustard seeds
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp nigella seeds
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
zest from 1 lemon
1 tbsp chopped fresh mint leaves (not quite finely, but not quite coarsely either)
coarse sea salt to taste
lemon juice to taste


1. Fill a medium-large pot with water and bring to a boil. Salt it as if you were making pasta.

2. Set up a large bowl with ice-cold water.

2. Once the water comes to a boil, blanch the snow peas for 1 minute, then remove and shock in the cold water to stop the cooking.

3. Refresh the cold water and water for the pot to return to a boil.

4. Blanch the peas for 20 seconds then again remove and shock in the cold water to stop the cooking.

5. Combine the peas and snow peas in a large bowl.

6. Sizzle the mustard and coriander seeds in the olive oil in a pan just until the seeds start to pop, then pour the oil and seeds over the beans. Stir.

7. Stir in all other ingredients EXCEPT the salt and lemon juice.

8. Season with salt and lemon juice to taste when serving. If you want to save the leftovers, do not season them – only season each serving as you eat it.

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Artichoke and Blood Orange Salad (with frisee, parsley, and cardamom) http://habeasbrulee.com/2010/01/17/artichoke-and-blood-orange-salad-with-frisee-parsley-and-cardamom/ http://habeasbrulee.com/2010/01/17/artichoke-and-blood-orange-salad-with-frisee-parsley-and-cardamom/#comments Mon, 18 Jan 2010 03:55:31 +0000 http://habeasbrulee.com/?p=338

Going through older post drafts, I’m always a bit startled when I come across a photo that I actually really like! It always seems to me that surely I must have posted all the good photos already, and only left the dregs as drafts. But apparently not.

Salad may not seem that exciting, but for me it’s revolutionary. In fact, so are blood oranges – I can’t stand regular oranges, but blood oranges taste just different enough. The redder they are, the better they taste. I can’t tell if that’s a real difference, or if I just like that the reddest ones look less like oranges. We made this during the height of Dave’s obsession with stovetop approximated sous vide cooking, and my obsession with finding salads I actually enjoy eating.

I think what won me over was the realization that salads could include fruit and spices and artistry, and not just a bunch of leaves on a plate. Who knew?


2008: Cocoa Nib Flans with Raw Sugar Sauce
2007: Stewed Garlicky Black Bean Spare Ribs

Artichoke and Blood Orange Salad
2 small heads frisee, removed from base and cleaned
1/4 C coarsely chopped flat leaf parsley
for the pickled artichokes
8 artichoke hearts, cut into eighths (held in acidulated water)
150 gm white wine vinegar
1.5 gm gelatin (optional — don’t bother if you have a chamber vac)
1 quarter preserved lemon, rind only, coarsely chopped.
4 cardamom pods, crushed
2 cloves garlic, crushed
for the blood oranges
4 blood oranges
1 tsp ground cardamom
for the vinaigrette
2 tbsp mustard seed oil
1 tsp red wine vinegar
fleur du sel
black pepper

First, make the pickled artichoke hearts.

This is actually a pretty spectacular method for doing sous vide cooking with liquidy contents inside the vacuum sealed bag without having a hugely expensive chamber vacuum sealer. Ordinarily, a FoodSaver or other normal, affordable home vacuum sealer can’t seal up anything that isn’t pretty dry, because the liquid gums up the works (as it were).

To solve this problem, we hit upon the idea of gelling the liquid with gelatin, since gelatin is thermoreversible and melts back into liquid when heated. This turns the liquid into a solid during the vacuum-sealing stage, and back into a liquid during the cooking stage. A perfect solution to all of life’s problems!

1. Bring the vinegar and gelatin to a boil, then refrigerate it until it is set.

2. Make a sachet with the cardamom, garlic, and lemon.

3. Add gelled vinegar, spice sachet, and artichoke hearts to a vacuum bag and seal.

4. Cook at 185 F for 40-75 minutes, until somewhat tender.

Next, prepare the blood orange.

1. Supreme the blood oranges by cutting off the peel to create a whole skinless fruit, then cutting segments of fruit out from between the layers of membrane. There are some great visual instructions on how to supreme citrus here.

2. Toss the blood orange segments with the cardamom.

Finally, construct the salad.

1. Whick together the vinaigrette, and toss with the parsley and frisee.

2. Top with blood orange segments (cold), artichokes (warm), salt, and freshly ground pepper to taste.

3. Serve immediately.

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Not-So-Green Mango Salad http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/09/04/not-so-green-mango-salad/ http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/09/04/not-so-green-mango-salad/#comments Tue, 04 Sep 2007 11:39:34 +0000 http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/09/04/not-so-green-mango-salad/

When I want to find ripe mangoes – lush, juicy, almost overripe mangoes, in fact – the Mrs. Robinsons of mangoes – all the shelves seem to carry are hard, tart, green mangoes.

But when I’m looking for tart, sharp green mangoes – more a vegetable than a fruit, clear and refreshing like citrus – the shelves are full of fragrant, sweet, tender mangoes that probably don’t even exist except for those times when I’m searching for the green ones.

Why do mangoes mock me so?

Whatever the reason, that’s my excuse for bringing you a not-so-green mango salad today, instead of the Burmese green mango salad Dave and I had intended to create. Made with mangoes that were somewhat unripe, firm and tasty without the dripping lushness or sharp tanginess of either extreme, this salad pops with fish sauce and sesame oil, sharpened with lime juice, and it has the satisfying crunch of raw red cabbage.

Not-So-Green Mango Salad
2 mangoes (green or verging towards unripe, at least), julienned
1 head red cabbage, julienned
6 hungarian wax peppers or similar green chilies, minced
3 shallots, minced
1 tbsp fish sauce, or to taste
1 tsp sesame oil, or to taste
1 tsp palm sugar, or to taste
4 limes worth of lime juice, or to taste

Stir all ingredients together. Optionally, you can add in some shrimp paste or ground tiny dried shrimp. Enjoy!

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Fava Bean and Cherry Salad http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/05/28/fava-bean-and-cherry-salad/ http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/05/28/fava-bean-and-cherry-salad/#comments Mon, 28 May 2007 11:10:00 +0000 http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/05/28/fava-bean-and-cherry-salad/

I first tasted fava beans a few days ago. I’m not sure how I managed to miss them until now, but I did. But now that I know how creamy they are, how fresh green and buttery in texture, I will be sure not to miss them again!

Preparing fava beans to be cooked is a two step process, one that I imagine would be most pleasant done with a group of friends sitting in rocking chairs out on the front porch (or here in Brooklyn, crowded together out on the front stoop).

First, you have to open up the pods and remove the beans. Next, you have to peel the thick skin from each bean. You can blanch them first if you like, but I didn’t, since they came off fairly easily without. It helps to have nails that can pierce the skin.

The flavor combination works well – it’s a great example of the adage, ‘Things that grow together, go together!’ This time of year, I become very brave, figuring that anything fresh and beautiful I find at the market will meld together with whatever else catches my eye. It tends to work out.

I don’t plan to bust out the grill until next weekend, but we have finally started eating dinner out in the backyard, at least. Dave pulls out the big photography lamp that we like to call ‘the sun’ and sets it up out back, running the power cord in through the window, to light our late night dinners in the summer.

The salad is simple:

Saute your fava beans in ramp butter, with some freshly ground black pepper, salt, and truffle salt to taste. When they are soft and creamy, stir in some sweet cherries, which you have previously halved and pitted. Mince some preserved lemon peel and stir that in, too.

This does involve a few ingredients you have to make in advance, but if you keep them always on hand, salads like this are quick and easy to create.

This is my entry for Vegetables, Beautiful Vegetables and Salad Stravaganza.

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Beet and Crispy Garlic Salad http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/04/21/beet-and-crispy-garlic-salad/ http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/04/21/beet-and-crispy-garlic-salad/#comments Sun, 22 Apr 2007 03:04:35 +0000 http://habeasbrulee.com/2007/04/21/beet-and-crispy-garlic-salad/

Until this past year, I thought that I hated all salads. I spent my life passing on my salad course at restaurants to my mother to eat for me. I knew that I liked spinach, sure, but that certainly didn’t count as salad in my mind.

Last summer, my friend Coby introduced me to a salad of mixed baby greens, beets, and chevre, with a bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar. He opened my mind to the idea that salad could be something interesting and delicious. We still make that basic salad occasionally, adding in some minced preserved lemon for extra kick.

Then another friend, Tse Wei, introduced me to a salad of watercress and sauteed pears. How marvelous! I slowly realized that I don’t hate salad at all. I just hate lettuce.

The salad featured in this post combines the sweetness of roasted beets with the savory crunch of crispy garlic, pulled together by the fresh greenness of, well, little green tasty things. Dave and I recently served a five course meal where this salad stole the show.

Beet and Crispy Garlic Salad
Olive oil
Micro greens/sprouts

Clean your beets and cut off a bit on each end. Rub them all over with olive oil, wrap them aluminum foil, and bake them until they are softened to your liking. They should be fairly easily pierced by a fork. You can do this at a high temperature for a shorter period of time, or at a low temperature for a longer period of time, it doesn’t matter which.

When the beets are done, peel off the skin and slice the beets into thick slices.

Mince some garlic and stir-fry it in olive oil over medium-high heat until it almost (but not quite!) crispy, then turn off the heat and keep stirring as it finishes crisping in the residual heat.

Serve the beets topped with crispy garlic and some sprouts or micro greens.

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