Okay, we admit it. We're ashamed. While we had hoped for a posting-palooza this summer, we fell short. Way short. A colossal amount of shortness. One of us has the tried and true alibi of baby wrangling, but the other...well, I got nothin', 'cept excuses. I think I even gave them to you a few posts back. You know, the one with the enchiladas when I referred to us as the Tartinators? I said we were back. Yeah, right.
Well, believe it or not, the LAME-inators are officially back and although it may sound simple, we're bringing you something we've been eating a lot of this summer...salad. Whether we're running from the kitchen to the crib or scrambling to meet a long awaited deadline, we can always find a few minutes to whip up a little something green. This one was created by my writing partner, Dave. We love this salad and eat it a lot, so much so, we should probably give it a writing credit.
The key element is this little doozy right here...
Nut-based oils are more expensive (this one runs about $12 at Whole Foods), but trust us when we say they go the distance. They pack so much flavor that you actually need less oil and fewer additional ingredients. You'll notice it's almost an even oil/vin ratio as we like the extra punch from the vin with this particular salad, but feel free to modify.
Now, let's get 'er done.
2 Tbsp. minced shallot
1/3 cup hazelnut oil
a little less than 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
Sea salt/black pepper
1 bunch fresh arugula (or mixed greens)
2/3 cup pistachios, shelled
2/3 cup dried cranberries (cherries or apricots are great too)
2 oz. goat cheese, crumbled
* 1 avocado, sliced - optional
Whisk together the shallot, oil and vinegar until emulsified. Salt and pepper to taste.
*We often change this up, sweating the shallot by sautéing it in 1/3 cup hazelnut oil, then adding to rest of oil and vin. You can also sub garlic and sweat the garlic.
Toss arugula with cranberries, pistachios and goat cheese. Lightly toss with preferred amount of dressing. (Save the leftovers for another salad, a marinade or drizzle over roasted figs.) We didn't have any avocado the day we made this one, but if you heart the avo like we do, go for it and just throw it right on top!
...the salad. Not Dave. Unless you really want Dave. I'll see what I can do.