Make that garden salad pop with chunks of fruits, chopped roasted nuts and plenty of smoked salmon. Toss with herbed calamansi dressing and enjoy!
It was lunch time the day before Christmas. We didn’t want to eat anything too heavy because we were anticipating what we’d have for our Christmas eve dinner. A salad sounded ideal but a salad with nothing but green leafy vegetables wouldn’t have been filling enough. And, personally, I would have found that boring.
So, I decided that we would have a salad with so much more—sweet, tart, nuttiness with a variety of textures. That meant lettuce, tomatoes, apples, grapes, pickled onions, pecans, sliced almonds and smoked salmon with a dressing that I especially concocted for the day.
The salad dressing was made calamansi juice, extra virgin olive oil, pepper, a little honey and our own blend of herb salt. Alex, after culinary school, is now in the food business and the herb salt is among the products that she sells. She sold over 130 pouches of herb salts in three days so any endorsement from my end would be overkill.
If, of course, you’re into making your own herb salt, you may do so and use that to make the dressing for this lovely salad.
For the dressing
For the salad mix
- 1 small handful pecans
- 1 small handful sliced almonds
- lettuce enough for 4; any variety
- 2 large tomatoes
- 1 medium cucumber
- 1 to 2 apples (we used Fuji)
- 1 teaspoon calamansi juice or lime or lemon juice
- 1 large bunch seedless grapes
- 12 to 16 pickled onion (store bought), well drained
- smoked salmon as much as you like, torn into small pieces
- Make dressing by whisking all the ingredients together. Set aside to infuse.
- Roughly chop the pecans. Toast in an oil-free pan for half a minute. Add the sliced almonds and continue toasting for another one to two minutes. Cool.
- Tear the lettuce into manageable pieces. Rinse well. Dry in a salad spinner.
- Cut the tomatoes into wedges.
- Cut the cucumber into half-inch cubes.
- Core the apples and cut into half-inch cubes. Toss with the teaspoonful of calamansi juice to prevent discoloration.
- Rinse the grapes and pluck off the stems.
- Drizzle two tablespoons of salad dressing in a large mixing bowl. Throw in all the salad ingredients. Toss.
- Divide the salad among individual bowls and serve with more dressing on the side.
If you cooked this dish (or made this drink) and you want to share your masterpiece, please use your own photos and write the cooking steps in your own words.