Baby Lettuces With Peas, Radishes & Creamy Roasted Onion Dressing
Serves 6 to 8
This springtime salad uses fresh, seasonal greens from Bill Crepps’ Everything Under the Sun’s farmers’ market stand, including arugula flowers and minutina — a hardy specialty green, also known as erba stella, staghorn and buckshorn plantain; as well as his homemade dehydrated smoked garlic. You can substitute your favorite salad greens and arugula, and make your own garlic chips (see instructions below).
3 spring onions, about 3 ounces
1 tablespoon olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
¼ cup creme fraiche
¼ cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar
4 small bunches baby lettuces, about 10 ounces, washed and dried, large leaves torn 2 ounces minutina, washed and dried, or baby arugula 1 bunch radishes, quartered lengthwise 1 cup English peas, shelled (see Note) 1 bunch arugula flowers, or other edible flowers, such as thyme flowers, removed from stem (optional)
2 to 3 tablespoons smoked dried garlic, lightly crushed (see Note)
Flaked sea salt, such as Maldon
To make the dressing: Preheat the oven to 375°. Place the onions on a small sheet pan, rub with olive oil and season with a generous pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast the onions until soft and caramelized, 20-25 minutes. Check periodically and turn as needed to caramelize evenly. Remove from the oven and let cool slightly.
Finely chop the roasted onions and place in a medium bowl. Add the creme fraiche, buttermilk, lemon juice and vinegar. Whisk together until combined and season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to use. (Makes about 1 cup.)
To assemble the salad: Toss together the lettuce and greens in a large bowl; divide evenly among chilled serving plates. Top each salad with a few radish pieces and a generous sprinkle of peas. Drizzle the dressing on top of each salad and garnish with the arugula flowers, smoked garlic and Maldon sea salt. Serve immediately.
Note: If the peas are young and sweet enough, add them to the salad raw. For older peas, quickly blanch in a pot of salted, boiling water; drain and shock the peas in an ice water bath. If also making the pod stock for the fava stew (see recipe), reserve the pea shells.
You can substitute Everything Under the Sun’s smoked garlic by making your own roasted garlic “chips.” Thinly slice 4 large garlic cloves lengthwise, toss with 1½ teaspoons olive oil, a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Spread evenly on a small sheet pan and roast at 375° until golden brown and crisp, about 8 minutes. Keep a close eye on the garlic and stir about halfway through the roasting time to keep from burning.
Per serving: 62 calories, 2 g protein, 6 g carbohydrate, 4 g fat (1 g saturated), 3 mg cholesterol, 20 mg sodium, 2 g fiber.