radicchio salad with lime vinaigrette

And so here we are, in the absolute middle of winter, with cold winds blowing and month-old, sooty snow piled high outside. My initial zeal for fresh root vegetables, citrus and kale is waning. But the things is, the year more than most, I want fresh vegetables and the creamy, buttery gratins of the season just don’t sound appealing. So, for now at least, we are still eating vegetables, even as they become harder and harder to procure.

Unless you go to the grocery store–there you’d hardly know it was winter at all. They even have tomatoes! But you know, I have my standards, so I walked right by the tomatoes and picked up a beautiful purple radicchio. And then this salad was born. I wasn’t sure what I was after, I just wanted something bright, crisp, and fresh. And that’s just what we have here. A vivid salad with tender leaves, a hint of lime, a little bit of pecorino, and a classic mustard-lime vinaigrette. A perfect counterpoint to the heavier dishes of the season.

Radicchio Salad with Lime Vinaigrette

for the salad
1 head radicchio, washed, trimmed, and leaves torn
1/2 cup pecorino romano, shaved with a peeler
1 tablespoon lime zest

for the vinaigrette
3 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lime juice
2 teaspoons grainy mustard
1/2 teaspoon lime zest
2 pinches salt

To make the vinaigrette, pour the lime juice into a small bowl or jar. Gradually whisk in the oil, and then the mustard. Add the salt and zest. Toss the radicchio with several tablespoons of the vinaigrette, add an extra pinch of salt, and set aside for 15 minutes. The radicchio will wilt ever so slightly while it sits. When you are ready to serve, check the dressing and salt levels, and adjust if needed. Add the cheese, and a bit more lime zest for color, and serve.

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  1. […] Radicchio is an ingredient that captures autumnal glory perfectly with its lovely colors and robust flavors. Fresh at the markets right now, you’ll find big, wild heads of the stuff, delicate maroon in hue with dark green tips, and white and purple innards. These aren’t the precious, trimmed things you see in little baskets at the store, rather, they’re full heads of young, fresh, just-bitter radicchio. A few weeks ago, I mentioned that I was attempting a salad with raddichio and caramelized leeks, red onion, red peeper. The salad tasted great, but in pictures it was just this formless mess of jewel-tones. So we’ll skip the pictures and say ferret out a head of radicchio, cut it up, and eat it. Not in some precious, I-haven’t-had-something-that’s-not-cabbage-in-5-months kind of way, but with apples, or pears, some alliums, cheese, and maybe croutons. For inspiration, check out this radicchio salad with cippolini, beets, and carrots, or this simpler salad with a lime vinaigrette. […]

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