A light and healthy salad, perfect for detoxing after those holiday excesses, from the James Beard award-winning chef Holly Smith, owner of Café Juanita in Kirkland, Washington.
Awarded "Best Food in Seattle" for 2011 by Zagat, Café Juanita serves delicious and authentic Northern Italian cuisine made with the finest organic and local products, when possible, from the Pacific Northwest. In an effort to cook seasonally and support local producers, Chef Smith often changes the menu to reflect what is available and most fresh.
- 2 Belgian endive
- 1 bulb fennel (2 if small)
- ½ cup Sicilian pistachios, lightly roasted
- Ligurian olive oil or other lighter, fruity extra virgin olive oil
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Pistachio oil, for garnish
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds
- Maldon salt
- Kosher salt
- 2 teaspoon soy lecithin granules
- 1 cup pomegranate juice, preferably POM
- Microgreens for garnish, optional
Trim the root end from the endive and cut the leaves into 2-inch segments (roughly in half).
Trim the fennel top and shave thin slices, but not so thin that they are overly wilted once dressed, of fennel on mandolin. Make sure to rotate the bulb as you slice so as to avoid the base and core.
Roast pistachios in 350 degree oven for 12 minutes, or until aromatic. Cool.
In a salad bowl, toss the endive and fennel to combine and dress lightly with extra virgin olive oil, to taste. Add the pistachios and lemon zest, to taste. Then season with a pinch each of Maldon and kosher salts, and then toss to combine.
To make the foam, combine soy lecithin granules and pomegranate juice in a plastic or Pyrex measuring cup and froth well with a hand/stick blender. You can re-froth the mixture as needed after using foam on top. Be careful not to spoon below foam; it will be liquidy.
To serve, scatter the endive and fennel evenly on the plate and garnish with the pomegranate seeds. Drizzle the salad and the plate with pistachio oil and then spoon foam over salad and onto oil on plate. Garnish with a few grains of Maldon salt and leaves of undressed microgreens, as desired.