Lettuce, Red Pepper and Fennel Salad

Lettuce, Red Pepper and Fennel Salad

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar or
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup olive oil
8 cups bite-size pieces lettuce
1 small fennel bulb, trimmed, sliced
1 small red bell pepper, sliced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Combine first 3 ingredients in small bowl. Gradually whisk in olive oil. Set dressing aside. Combine remaining ingredients in large bowl. Add enough dressing to season to taste. Season generously with pepper sand serve.

Apple-Beet Salad with Creamy Dill Dressing

Apple-Beet Salad with Creamy Dill Dressing

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 medium beets, steamed, peeled, and julienned
1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 small clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
Table salt and ground black pepper
1/2 small lemon
2 tart apples, such as Granny Smith, halved, cored, and cut into 1/8-inch slices
1 1/2 quarts leaf lettuce
1/4 cup toasted pecans, chopped coarse

Drizzle vinegar over beets; refrigerate overnight.

Mix yogurt, mayonnaise, garlic, and dill in small bowl. Season to taste with salt, if necessary, and pepper to taste; set aside.

Squeeze lemon juice over apple slices. Place greens on platter or individual plates. Arrange apple slices and julienned beets over the greens; top with toasted pecans. Drizzle salad with dressing and serve. Or serve salad and pass dressing separately.
Coming next week: Cucumbers, fennel, zucchini, car- rots, dill, scallions and some other stuff.

Green Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette for Two

Green Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette for Two

Vinaigrette
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon minced shallot
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard (optional)
1/4 teaspoon table salt
Pinch ground black pepper
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Salad
4 cups mixed greens, washed and dried

Combine vinegar, shallot, mustard (if using), salt, and pepper in bowl with fork. Add oil, then whisk or mix with fork until smooth, about 30 seconds. The dressing will separate after 5 to 10 minutes, so use immediately or mix again before tossing with greens.

Place greens in large salad bowl. Drizzle with dressing and toss until greens are evenly coated. Serve immediately.

Lettuce-and-Mint-Braised Sugar Snap Peas

Lettuce-and-Mint-Braised Sugar Snap Peas

1/2 pound sugar snap peas
8 large Butter lettuce leaves
1/4 tsp sugar
1 Tbs butter
1 bunch mint
2 scallions, halved across
Salt

Rinse peas and remove strings. Rinse lettuce leaves and arrange half of them, with water still clinging to the leaves, in a smallish heavy saucepan to hold ingre- dients snugly. Add sugar snaps, sugar and 1/2 Tbs. but- ter. Divide the mint into 4 bunches and tie each with one of the scallion halves. Add the bundles to each leaf. Press remaining lettuce over to enclose contents.

Turn the heat to high. When contents steam, reduce heat to moderately low and cover pan. Cook, shaking several times, until sugar snaps are just tender, 4 to 7 minutes. Remove lettuce covering and mint bundle, discard. Transfer sugar snaps to a warmed serving dish. Toss with salt and remaining 1/2 Tbs. butter.