This dinner was the epitome of eating as local as possible. The maple mustard chicken is locally raised and bought from our neighbourhood butcher. The carrots, potatoes and turnip that roasted under the chicken legs came from our Round the Bend Farm CSA box. And the beautiful chopped salad (save the dressing and cranberries) uses ingredients that are also from our CSA box.
(Jump to the recipe...)
This salad was created out of necessity. Our kids have been pretty good with the other less bitter greens that we have received, and have eaten them mixed in small portions into their salads or blended into their smoothies. But try as we might, there was no amount of radicchio minuscule enough to appease their tiny taste buds. Chalk it up to the gorgeous colour being too conspicuous and the taste being too mature... for now.
Anyway, since we had a big beautiful head of radicchio to use up and kids who would not allow us to mix it with lettuce, I had to devise another salad that would use up this bitter leaf as quickly as possible. I know that some of you are thinking that a salad made almost completely of radicchio is not really your cup of tea.... but if you were ever going to like radicchio this will be the salad that convinces you.
The sweetness of the corn, tomatoes and cranberries really balances the bitterness that can be present in radicchio. Also, as with bitter melon, or maybe more familiarly, as with spicy foods, your taste buds are quickly overwhelmed and you become immune to the harsher tastes and begin to taste some of the subtler background flavours.
Sceptical but curious? Here's a rough outline/recipe. Try and tell me if you like it.
Radicchio and Corn Salad
1/2 head radicchio, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1 pint sweet cherry tomatoes, halved
kernels cut from 1 ear of corn
1/4 - 1/2 small sweet red onion, thinly sliced or minced
handful of dried cranberries
zest and juice from 1/2 lemon
4 Tbsp oilve oil
1/2 tsp honey Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp sugar
salt, to taste
- Place vinagrette ingredients in a mason jar and shake.
- Toss together all salad ingredients.
- Add dressing to taste. Toss vigorously to fully marinate the salad ingredients.