Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Robin's School Garden Salad

In light of the hot weather we've got here (81 degrees in San Francisco today!), I am scrapping my original plan for dinner tonight (which was black beans and rice) and going with one of our hot weather favorites -- what we like to call around here "Robin Salad."

It has that name because it is a deelicious recipe given to me by my dear friend Robin, who is a stellar cook. She's one of my cooking heroes. She also runs a seed-to-plate program for kids in East Palo Alto -- you know, where they teach kids how to grow food in a garden, harvest it, eat it, compost it, and grow it again. Also, she teaches them the basics, like lettuce is alive, a rock is not, and a tree.... A TREE IS ALIVE. (I'm not kidding; her kids thought trees were not alive. Like rocks.)

I have to preface this recipe, though. You need to know that this dressing is extremely addictive. It is insanely delicious. In fact, the greens and "salad" part of it are really extraneous -- you could put this dressing on cardboard and it would be good. That's why this recipe is for a large quantity of dressing: you will want leftovers of it. So just beware.

So, without further ado:

Robin's School Garden Salad

1 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup stone ground mustard
2 cloves garlic, finely minced (I actually always use 3 or 4, but that's how we do garlic in my house)
1/4 cup tamari or soy sauce
2 tbsp honey
Juice of 1/4 lemon
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine ingredients in a large bowl or jar. If using a bowl, mix dressing vigorously to ensure all ingredients are incorporated. If using a jar (my preferred method), put the lid on and shake shake shake.

Any greens you like, but the ones that stand up to this dressing best are the assertive ones, like romaine, red cabbage, chard, etc. Also add carrots, radishes, and whole wheat croutons. To turn this into a main course/dinner, I also add in some chopped up baked tofu.

Toss and serve and enjoy!


  1. Chard in a salad, you say. That opens up my world considerably.

  2. So, I tried this with spinach and it is so great! I added goat cheese, walnuts, red onions, cucumber, and cranberries ... Delicious dressing to top it off!! Thanks for sharing.


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