This is a busy looking salad that has a combination of light contrasting flavors. The toasted pine nuts, egg and tomato add enough nutritional value to qualify today's salad creation as a light lunch.
Not all cider vinegar is created equal. Some of the bulk brands have a harsh sharp flavor. Local small production brands of cider vinegar often are a better product.
Capers have a strong brine flavor if they are not rinsed. Briefly rinsing capers under warm water makes them much more palatable. Soaking capers in water for 1 hour will yield an even mellower flavor.
Pine Nuts Preparation:
Lightly toast 1 1/2 tablespoons of pine nuts in a dry sauté pan over medium low heat.
Shake the pan often, so the pine nuts toast evenly.
Place the pine nuts in a container.
Dijon Caper Cider Vinaigrette:
This recipe yields about 1/3 cup. (Enough for 1 large salad.)
This vinaigrette should be slightly in the acidic side, so choose the best apple cider vinegar that is available!
Pomace Olive Oil has a very mild flavor that is almost neutral. Use canola oil or vegetable oil (soy oil) if the olive oil tastes too strong.
Step 1: Place 1 1/2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a mixing bowl.
Add 1/2 tablespoon of Dijon Mustard.
Add 1/4 teaspoon of minced garlic.
Add 1/2 teaspoon of minced shallot.
Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of rinsed capers.
Add 1/2 tablespoon of chopped Italian Parsley.
Add sea salt and white pepper. (To taste.)
Step 2: Stir the ingredients together.
Let the flavors meld for 5 minutes.
Step 3: Slowly add 3 1/2 tablespoons of pomace olive oil while gently whisking to create a loose thin vinaigrette emulsion.
Set the vinaigrette aside and stir before serving.
Romaine Hearts with Dijon Caper Cider Vinaigrette and Garni:
This recipe yields 1 large salad portion.
Step 1: Cut a romaine heart into long thin wedge strips. Cut enough romaine hearts for a fairly large portion of salad.
Place the romaine heart strips in a mixing bowl.
Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of the Dijon Caper Cider Vinaigrette.
Toss the ingredients together.
Step 2: Stack the thin romaine heart strips on the center of a plate.
Sprinkle 1/3 cup of chopped tomato over the lettuce.
Sprinkle 1 chopped hard boiled egg over the lettuce.
Step 3: Spoon a small portion of the Dijon Caper Cider Vinaigrette the salad and onto the plate.
Step 4: Sprinkle the toasted pine nuts over the salad.
Sprinkle 1 thin bias sliced green onion over the salad.
Salad presentation styles like this are outdated by today's standards, but it was not long ago that this was a popular way to present a house salad in a restaurant. This simple salad looks busy, yet the flavors go well together.