ANTIPASTO SALAD WITH BALSAMICO
1 medium red onion
1/4 cup red wine vinegar mixed with 1/4 cup water
Greens: 1 small head romaine, radicchio and curly endive
1/2 cup pine nuts
1 bunch scallions, trimmed and sliced diagonally up to green
3 ounces shaved Parmesan
3 ounces thinly sliced Prosciutto, cut into bite-sized squares
1 cup basil leaves
1 cup whole parsley leaves
8 cloves garlic diced
2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup Cavalli balsamico condiment
sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Peel and thinly slice the onion. Soak it for 30 minutes in a mixture of wine vinegar and water. Drain.
Rinse and spin-dry the greens. Tear them into bite-size pieces and mix well. Refrigerate, covered until 30 minutes before serving time.
If the pine nuts are not supremely fresh and fragrant, toast them for 5 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Prep the other ingredients and hold them for assembly.
Simmer the garlic cloves over very lowest heat for 5 minutes in olive oil, until the garlic has just lightly colored. Off the heat add the balsamico, salt and pepper to taste.
In a large salad bowl, toss all the greens, most of the pine nuts, half of the scallions, cheese and prosciutto, and all of the basil and parsley.
Arrange the salad on a serving platter. Strew on the red onion, the remaining nuts, scallions and cheese. Drizzle on the warm dressing and serve immediately.
For serving on individual plates, I would toss the dressing with the greens etc. and garnish with onions and remaining nuts, scallions, cheese and prosciutto.
Yield: 8 servings
Adapted from Lynne Rossetto Kasper's book, The Splendid Table, (Morrow, 1992)