This salad is perfect for those times when you wish to put a light summer dinner on the table yet not stay in the kitchen too long. Any greens, like Napa cabbage, will do, but Asian bok choi, kale, or tatsoi, lend themselves best to this study in contrasts. A fruity China black tea, such as Keemun or Yunnan, stands up well to the assertive flavor of the greens. Some crusty whole grain bread and a bottle of sturdy red wine will round out the meal.
4 tablespoons/2 ounces dried China black tea leaves (Keemun or Yunnan)
1 cup/250 milliliters boiling water
Fruity olive oil for wilting the greens,
plus additional oil to drizzle over dish at serving time
1 tablespoon/3 grams fresh ginger root, finely chopped
1-1/2 pounds/700 grams assorted greens, tough stems or ribs removed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
5 ounces/140 grams mild, soft goat cheese, cut into cubes or rounds
2 ripe nectarines, plums, or apricots,
pitted and cut into wedges
Olive oil to drizzle
Warm 4 plates.
Roast the tea leaves in a heavy dry skillet just until aromatic, about 2 minutes. Do not burn. Remove from the heat and carefully add the boiling water. Steep for 1 minute and then pass through a fine-meshed sieve, reserving the liquid.
Heat the oil over medium heat, in a large, heavy skillet. Add the ginger and stir constantly until aromatic. Do not burn. Add the greens and cook until slightly wilted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (There should be some liquid remaining.)
Divide the greens among the 4 warmed plates. Arrange the goat cheese and fruit wedges as you like over the greens. Drizzle with olive oil and serve immediately.
Cooking with Tea:
Techniques and Recipes for
Appetizers, Entrees, Desserts and More
By Robert Wemischner and Diana Rosen
Periplus Editions/Tuttle Publishing, October 2000
164 pages, full color photographs
Recipes reprinted by permission.
This page created March 2001
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