Vegetable Rainbow Salad
This salad from F&W’s Grace Parisi brilliantly combines some of the most exciting food trends of 2013 into one amazing recipe—pickled vegetables, uncommon produce, ancient grains, and a cross-cultural dressing that includes miso and chipotle chile in adobo. If ingredients like lime radishes and baby orange cauliflower aren’t available at your farmers’ market, use equal quantities of similar vegetables.
6 purple pearl onions
6 small red radishes
2 small lime radishes
1 medium watermelon radish
1 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
10 baby beets of varying colors
5 medium carrots of varying colors
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small purple sweet potato
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 heads baby orange cauliflower
1/2 small head Romanesco broccoli
1 small chipotle chile in adobo
1 tablespoon yellow miso paste
1 tablespoon honey
4 cups escarole
1 cup pea shoots
1/2 cup cooked black quinoa
In a small saucepan of salted boiling water, blanch the pearl onions for 3 minutes. Drain the onions and cool them under running water. Slip off the skins and pack the onions into a small heatproof jar. Pack each type of radish into separate small heatproof jars. In the same saucepan, combine 3/4 cup of the rice vinegar with the sugar, 2 tablespoons of salt and 1 cup of water and bring to a boil. Pour the hot brine over the jarred onions and radishes and let stand at room temperature for 3 hours.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the beets and carrots on 2 separate sheets of foil and drizzle them with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Fold up the edges of the foil sheets to make two sealed packets. Rub the sweet potato with vegetable oil, prick it all over with a fork and set it on a sheet of foil. In a medium baking dish, toss the cauliflower and broccoli florets with the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Roast the cauliflower and broccoli for about 12 minutes, the sweet potato for about 30 minutes and the carrots and beets for about 35 minutes, until they are all tender. Let the roasted vegetables cool slightly.
Using paper towels, rub off the beet and carrot skins; quarter the beets and halve the carrots. Peel the sweet potato and cut it into 1/2-inch-thick rounds.
In a mini food processor or blender, puree the chipotle chile with the yellow miso paste, honey and the remaining 1/4 cup of rice vinegar. With the machine on, add the 1/2 cup of vegetable oil in a thin stream and process until emulsified. Season the dressing with salt.
Drain the pickled vegetables. Slice the pearl onions 1/4 inch thick. In a serving bowl, combine the pickled and roasted vegetables with the escarole, pea shoots and cooked black quinoa. Add 1/4 cup of the dressing and toss gently. Serve the salad right away, passing the remaining dressing on the side.