As much a salad queen as I am, I used to have a hard time with salad in the winter. It felt too cold, too light… too summery. I don’t know why it took me so long to figure this out, but the key, of course, is to adapt saladmaking strategy to the season. Duh. Thus, arugula transitions me through the late fall, & chicories of all kinds are now getting me through the winter. Problem solved! Chicories feel hearty & earthy to me. Their bitterness plays well with winter citrus & cheese in bigger chunks (don’t know about you, but winter definitely makes me want more fat). Lettuce-oriented salads get to remain happily in the warmer part of the year, where they belong—an entirely personal thing, since excellent lettuces are plenty available (around here, at least). They do still make it into the salad bowl, but mainly in a supporting role.
Or, in this case, not at all:
This is Treviso (or something close) from Riverdog, tart oranges from our friend Cooking Show’s backyard tree, Satsumas & walnuts from Kaki farm, plus some cheap goat cheese from Trader Joe’s. Red wine & mustard vinaigrette courtesy of the famous Orangette, whose spring salad was instrumental in starting me down the path to chicory salads. This photo is a little misleading because I actually added a lot more citrus to the bowl halfway through eating this salad. I’m not above making corrections & adjusting ratios mid-meal. Hey, it’s my kitchen & there’s a ton of fruit sitting right over there, so why suffer, even a tiny bit?