Beet and Apple Salad
This is one of my favorite salad recipes. It is refreshing and delicious. It begins with beets. Now, I like to cook my beets via Sous Vide, but you can easily wrap them in tin foil with a little salt and pepper and roast them until soft.
3 large beets chopped into a large dice
2 large apples, chopped into a large dice
Zest of one lemon
Juice of ½ a lemon
Approx. 1 tsp olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste.
This is definitely a make-ahead spread. It's great if you know you have guests coming the next weekend and you want to make a dip. You can do a little bit every day, then finish it the morning they arrive.
I enjoy it with some homemade sourdough bread - but it's also fabulous with chips. The roasted garlic gives it an incredible flavor, and by processing the beans as described below, you don't have any unwanted "beany" flavor/ordor or side effects.
Step 1: Prepare the calamari
Run the calamari under cold water. Drain and slice the tails into ½ inch rings. Bring a six quart pot of salted water to boil. Fill a large bowl with ice water and keep it next to your pot. First add the tails (the order is important because the tentacles turn the water purple). Remove them with a slotted spoon as they begin to float (this takes about 30-45 seconds) and plunge them into the ice water. Once cooled, drain them and pat them dry.
When all the tails are out, let the water return to a rolling boil and add the tentacles to the pot. Remove them as soon as they start to float and add them to the pot, removing them as soon as they start to float. Then plunge the tentacles into the ice bath. Once cooled, drain them and pat them dry.
Step 2: Mixing the salad
In a large bowl, add the celery, tomatoes, olives, peppers, onion, garlic and lemon zest. In a smaller bowl, add the lemon juice, vinegar, and olive oil and whisk aggressively until it forms an emulsion.
Add the calamari to the bowl with the vegetables and then pour the dressing over it. Add salt and pepper to taste. Then store it in the fridge for about an hour before eating – if it can last that long.
Homemade Egg Salad
Before I can make egg salad, I need to make mayo. The store bought mayos have a lot of chemicals and preservatives - and quite frankly, don't taste very good. For egg salad, a quality homemade mayo is a must. So, here is the recipe for the mayo.
*Make sure the egg yolk has no white in it at all
Put the egg yolk, vinegar, lemon juice, mustard and salt into the bottom of a blender. Mix until combined. With the blender on, slowly stream in the olive oil until it forms a creamy consistency.
BE CAREFUL not to let it break. Mayo is an emulsion, so that egg yolk can only absorb a certain amount of oil. The trick is to add enough oil to make the emulsion creamy but not enough to make it break.
You know it’s broken if the liquids separate from the fats. Then, you have to throw it out and start again.
Now we are on to the egg salad itself. So, let's talk about eggs. In my opinion, the highest quality and best tasting eggs come from organic, free range and local chickens. In my case, I am fortunate enough to get them from a wonderful woman that raises heritage breeds of chickens, feeds them a completely organic and soy free diet, and allows them to roam her property and eat grass, worms and all the other things chickens naturally eat.
While not everyone has access to this kind of egg, I do strongly recommend that you purchase free range, organic eggs if you want to make a great egg salad.
Homemade Egg Salad
I like to chop all my veggies and add them to the bottom of a bowl. Then add in the eggs and slowly fold in enough of the mayo to make it creamy. (You may need more or less than the amount stated. Just add accordingly.) Then I’ll add the herbs (to taste) and fold them in as well.
I used to add cucumbers to my egg salad, but they are too watery to go in. Now I just slice them thinly and put them on top of my egg salad sandwiches.
If I want more of a lemony flavor, I zest some lemon into the salad. If I want more of a mustard or vinegar flavor, I’ll whisk the mustard and/or the vinegar into the mayo before folding it into the eggs.
And finally, on to the sandwich... I use Peter Reinhardt's Sandwich bread recipe from the course materials of the Craftsy platform, but you can use the version in The Bread Baker's Apprentice, which is quite similar. Sometimes, I shape it into a Pullman's Loaf, other times, I make these fabulous clover leaf rolls. I've used it to make hamburger and slider buns. It's an incredibly versatile recipe. Regardless of it's shape, they deliver a moist, delicious sandwich bread or roll.
My favorite garnish for an egg salad sandwich is thinly sliced cucumber and radish. If I can find purslane, I'll dress it with that lovely green too. Bon Appetit!
I'm a home cook with a lifelong passion for learning, exploring and experimenting in my kitchen. You can find me at @Debs1 on Twitter and @Debs121212 on Instagram.
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