Romaine Lettuce, Granny Smith Apples,
Toasted Hazelnuts, and New York State
Cheddar Cheese with Sherry Wine Dressing

Serves 4



measuring cup | measuring spoons | cook's knife | cutting board | salad spinner | 2 baking sheets with sides | 2 large 100 percent cotton towels | food processor with metal blade | two 3 quart stainless steel bowls | whisk | hand-held immersion blender | plastic wrap | colander

Sherry Wine Dressing
1/2 cup whole hazelnuts
2-1/2 tablespoons sherry wine vinegar
3/4 cup safflower oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste


Salad Greens and Garnish
1/2 cup whole hazelnuts
1/2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 Granny Smith apples, unpeeled
1-1/2 pounds romaine lettuce, cored, cut width-wise
   into 1/2-inch pieces, washed, and dried
1/2 pound New York State sharp cheddar cheese,
cut into sticks 2-3/4 inches long 1/4 inch thick


Make the Sherry Wine Dressing

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

Toast the hazelnuts on a baking sheet with sides in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove them from the oven and immediately cover with a damp towel. Invert another baking sheet over the first one to hold in the steam (this makes the nuts easier to skin). After 5 minutes, remove the skins from the nuts by placing small quantities inside a folded dry towel and rubbing vigorously between your hands. Cool the nuts thoroughly before processing in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade for 30 seconds, until finely ground. Transfer the ground hazelnuts to a 3-quart stainless steel bowl.

Add the sherry wine vinegar and whisk to combine. Add the safflower oil and whisk until blended. Season with salt and pepper. Use a handheld immersion blender or a food processor to blend the dressing until salad spinner fairly smooth and emulsified. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature until needed.


Finish and assemble the salad

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

Toast and skin the hazelnuts as previously described for the dressing. Cool the nuts to room temperature before cutting each in half. Set aside until needed.

In a 3-quart sta inless steel bowl, add the lemon juice to 2 cups of cold water. Core and quarter the apples, then slice each quarter lengthwise into 1/4-inch thick slices and immediately place in the acidulated water to prevent oxidation (brown discoloration).

Divide and arrange the romaine pieces on four 10- to 12-inch room-temperature plates. Drain the apples in a colander, rinse under cold running water, and shake dry. Arrange the apple slices around the lettuce, with the skin side touching or near the edge of the plate. Whisk the dressing. Dress the romaine and apples on each plate with 2 tablespoons of dressing. Sprinkle the cheddar cheese and hazelnuts on the center of each salad. Drizzle 1 to 2 tablespoons of the dressing over the cheese and hazelnuts. Serve immediately.

Recipes from:
Salad Days
Main-Course Salads for a First-Class Meal

Photography by Peter Johansky
Simon & Schuster Editions
1998, Hardcover, US $27.50
ISBN: 0-684-82261-X
Recipes & photos reprinted by permission


Salad Days
Main-Course Salads for a First-Class Meal



Copyright © 1998—the electronic Gourmet Guide, Inc. All rights reserved.