Rob Carson: Hi! Once again, I am Rob Carson. I am a radio personality and I like to cook. Today I am letting Susan Watterson from CulinAerie in Washington DC do the cooking or I should say salad making today. We are doing another Summer Salad Madness. What are we doing now?
Susan Watterson: We are doing a Composed salad.
Rob Carson: Okay! What is a Composed salad.
Susan Watterson: It doesn't mean that it's like relaxed.
Rob Carson: Yeah.
Susan Watterson: It's actually little more formal than a regular salad.
Rob Carson: Okay.
Susan Watterson: And the reason for making it can be because you want something with little more formal presentation. The advantage to it is that everything is composed on the plate, like a painting on a palette, and then you can pop it in your fridge. And then when you're ready to serve, you just pour the dressing over and out to go. Because as everybody knows, you can't dress your salad well in advance. So if you're entertaining and you want to present a salad, but you are worried about like, you are greeting your guests, and when can you toss the salad, this a great salad to do. Especially for a small dinner party.
Rob Carson: Sure. Okay. Well, let's talk about our ingredients today.
Susan Watterson: This is an endive salad, this is Belgian endive.
Rob Carson: It's Belgian.
Susan Watterson: it is Belgian. It's not Chicory. It's slightly bitter. So we're going to dress it with a slightly sweet dressing to offset that. It's going to form the basis of the salad. Blue cheese or you can use goat cheese. I like sort of the pungency of the blue cheese. Roasted beats.
Rob Carson: How do you roast your beats?
Susan Watterson: I stab them with the knife and I stick them in the oven.
Rob Carson: For how long?
Susan Watterson: Till when I stab them with the knife again they are soft.
Rob Carson: Okay. What temperature?
Susan Watterson: 300-350, for 45 minutes an hour, it depends, sometimes beats are this bigger, sometimes the beats are -- Rob Carson: Okay! Cool! What do we have?
Susan Watterson: Toasted walnuts and then a Citrus Vinaigrette.
Rob Carson: So what's in your Citrus Vinaigrette?
Susan Watterson: It is zest and juice of one orange, zest of one lemon, a juice of only half, sour cream about a tablespoon as an emulsifier. Shallots, teaspoon to tablespoon or you could use a little onion. Then olive oil probably half a cup.
Rob Carson: Alright! Salt pepper.
Susan Watterson: Salt pepper, always.
Rob Carson: Cool! Alright, let's make the salad. Shall we?
Susan Watterson: Alright! So with the endive, I just need to cutoff the end of the endive, and loosen the leaves, pick pretty ones. You want endive that's yellow on the tips. But most people would reject this in the grocery store, because they go, Oh! It's a vegetable and it's not green. Endive isn't supposed to be green. If it's green it means it's been exposed to light, and the chlorophyll reaction is starting to happen. You want it be --Rob Carson: Yellow.
Susan Watterson: In fact, when you keep it, you should put it in refrigerator, obviously, it's dark. But if you ever have it out you should keep a towel over it.
Rob Carson: Okay! It's very sensitive.
Susan Watterson: it's very sensitive. So we're just going to do, pick some pretty leaves.
Rob Carson: Okay! So this is about flavor, but it's also -- I mean, it's -- it will look pretty.
Susan Watterson: Right.
Rob Carson: It's going to look very pretty on the plate.
Susan Watterson: Then I'm going to take some orange segments, and I'm just going to -- because remember it's a composed salad so --Rob Carson: Yes, right.
Susan Watterson: No tossing, no casualness here, it's all very deliberate. This could be done as I said before hand, and this is resting in your fridge. Then your beats.
Rob Carson: Nice color.
Susan Watterson: Julienne beats.
Rob Carson: Looks really pretty with the orange.
Susan Watterson: This also makes a good hors d'oeuvre of just serving each spear with beats and --Rob Carson: I've had endive to serve these actually.
Susan Watterson: And then blue cheese.
Rob Carson: God bless blue cheese. It's wonderful. Excellent.
Susan Watterson: Walnuts for crunch. I like, prefer walnuts, you can pecans but I think the walnuts -- the tendency in the walnuts --Rob Carson: Just now these are just dry or roasted walnuts, no glaze, no anything like that.
Susan Watterson: No, just plain old walnuts. And then this would be sitting in your fridge. So that's why I said, for smaller dinner party is you have to be able to put all the plates in. And then when you are ready to serve you just pull it out it's nice and cold. And you put dressing over it.
Rob Carson: Wow!
Susan Watterson: More formal looking, or for a little more elegant dinner party, if your going to have it.
Rob Carson: So there is our Composed salad. As our Summer Salad Madness continues. We're going to what?
Susan Watterson: We're going to talk about fruits and vegetables salads.
Rob Carson: Alright!