When planning a multi-course menu, imagination sometimes flags when one gets around to the figuring out of a salad course. The temptation to tear up a few greens and pass the vinaigrette is compelling as the brain wearies of puzzling together a compatible list of courses from aperitifs to dessert. This Salad of Romaine with Arugula Dressing is a simple one. A child–or a cook with many other pans on her fire–could put it together. At the same time, it does not have the ho-hum quality. And, if the general composition of the menu is on the rich side, this combination of greens and green dressing serves as a nice counterpoint.
Whether the salad appears after the first course or after the main course is a matter of personal preference. Cooks have recorded their views arguing the merits of ‘before and after’ since salads began showing up on the tables of Ancient Greece. (The Greeks were just as divided over the issue as we are today.)
Postscript: When this salad is part of the dinner menu: Surf and Turf Chez Laeuchli, baby spinach or Hakurei turnip greens may be substituted for arugula since stir-fried arugula is part of the first course of Queues de langoustes grillées Kinshasa ~ Grilled Rock Lobster Tails Kinshasa Style.
Salad of Romaine with Arugula Dressing (for 6 people)
Note to followers of the diplomatickitchen: The diplomatickitchen’s next posting will be on Tuesday, August 6. During the next 5 days we will be in Santa Fe attending a horsemanship clinic given by Buck Brannaman: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buck_Brannaman
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Timing Note: The dressing will not suffer if it is made several hours in advance and stored in a glass jar in the refrigerator. Bring it to room temperature before mixing it with the greens.
- 6 cups of Romaine, cut into ribbons
- 2 cups of Arugula (aka Roquette): measured in a liquid measuring cup…the measurement need not be too exact.
- 3 Tablespoons of Pine Nuts
- 4 cloves of Garlic
- 1/2 cup of Olive Oil
- 1/4 cup of freshly grated Parmesan
- a Food Processor or Blender
1. Place the arugula, pine nuts, garlic, and olive oil in the processor or blender and blend them to a smooth texture.
2. Add the Parmesan and process again until the mixture is smooth. (The dressing may be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator in a lidded glass jar. It won’t lose it’s fresh color. Bring it to room temperature before using it to make the salads.
3. Divide the greens among salad plates. Dot each salad here and there with small spoonfuls of the dressing and serve.
Note: Salad of Romaine with Arugula Dressing is the Salad Course (served between the First and Main Courses) of the Dinner Menu: Surf and Turf Chez Laeuchli.
An Invitation: You are invited to request suggestions from the diplomatickitchen for your own menus for any occasion by clicking on the feature ‘Ask and Tell’ here or in the Menu at the top of the page. Do you have a menu concept with a gap or two that wants filling…or perhaps you are an expat looking for ways to adapt your recipes to what is available in your temporary home…maybe you are just looking for a new way to use a familiar ingredient or would like suggestions on how to adjust quantities of a recipe from the diplomatickitchen for smaller or larger groups…Replies will be published in ‘Ask and Tell’ or sent by email if you prefer.
© Elizabeth Laeuchli, the diplomatickitchen, 2011-2013
Julie @ Texan New Yorker said:
Arugula on romaine – what a clever idea! I must try this soon, thanks for posting!
BTW…I am making your pasta again tonight…http://www.texannewyorker.com/2013/07/17/spaghetti-aglio-e-olio/…we like it a lot 🙂