Escalivada or Grilled Vegetable Salad with Parsley Vinaigrette

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This is a Catalan grilled vegetable salad. We ate it with Spanish grilled pork kebabs and Catalan tomato bread. It contains 3 different types of onions- yellow, leeks, & scallions- it smelled so good! After the vegetables are grilled, they are sliced and piled separately in rows on a serving plate- a lovely presentation. The vinaigrette is drizzled over the top. We ate this as a side dish but it would also be nice as a topping for grilled bread. This recipe was adapted from The Barbecue Bible by Steven Raichlen.

Serves: 4 to 6 as a side dish

For the vegetables:

  • 1 large onion (I used a Vidalia)
  • 1 large or 2 small long, slender eggplants (about 1 pound) (I used Asian eggplant)
  • 1 bunch leeks (the smallest, tenderest you can find)
  • 1 bunch scallions
  • 2 medium red bell peppers (I used 1 orange and 1 yellow)
  • 4 medium ribs celery
  • 2 T extra-virgin olive oil, preferably Spanish
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

For the Vinaigrette:

  • 2 T sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar, or more to taste
  • 1/2 tsp coarse salt, or more to taste
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, preferably Spanish
  • 3 T finely chopped fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • lemon wedges, for serving, if desired
  1. Preheat the grill to high.
  2. Peel the onion, leaving the root end intact, then cut through the root into 6 or 8 wedges. Cut the eggplant on the diagonal into 1/4-inch slices. Trim the leeks of the dark greens and roots, leaving only the white portion, then cut lengthwise in half and rinse well. Blot the leeks dry with paper towels. Trim the roots off the scallions. Brush the vegetables generously with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  3. When ready to cook, arrange the vegetables, including the bell peppers and celery, on the hot grate and grill, turning with tongs, until nicely browned, about 12 minutes in all. (We put the eggplant and Vidalia onion in a grill basket.) Transfer the vegetables as they are done to a cutting board to cool.      IMG_4260
  4. When cool enough to handle, cut the roots off the onion wedges and thinly slice the onions crosswise. Cut the eggplant slices into 1/4-inch slivers. Scrape any burnt skin off the peppers (if desired), then stem, seed, and thinly slice. Cut the leeks, scallions, and celery into thin crosswise slices. Arrange the vegetable slices in separate piles on plates or a platter.
  5. Prepare the vinaigrette. Combine the vinegar, salt, parsley, pepper, and olive oil in a mini-food processor. Add additional salt to taste. Spoon the vinaigrette over the vegetables and serve with lemon wedges.

Warm Lentil Salad with Seared Tuna & Fresh Herb Vinaigrette

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This was a wonderful dinner salad to serve using my abundance of CSA salad greens. The herb vinaigrette was terrific. My son wanted seconds of the lentils!! 🙂 I believe that the original source for this recipe was the Chicago Tribune (I have had the recipe for a LONG time). I used brown lentils, red and green romaine lettuce, radicchio, and parsley with a little bit of basil in the vinaigrette. A healthy and quick dinner.

Serves: 3 to 4 as a main course

  • 1 cup lentils, preferably French green lentils
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 1/2 tsp sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 T chopped fresh parsley and basil (or mint, if desired)
  • 2 T red wine vinegar
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound fresh tuna
  • 6 ounces mixed salad greens
  1. Combine lentils, bay leaf and water in a medium saucepan. Add 1 1/2 tsp of the salt; heat to boiling. Reduce heat; simmer until lentils are barely tender, 20-25 minutes. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, chop and combine the shallot, herbs, vinegar, 1/2 tsp salt, and pepper to taste in a mini-food processor. Add the olive oil and combine. Set aside.
  3. Combine the remaining salt with about 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper. Season tuna on both sides with this mixture.
  4. Place a non-stick grill pan or lightly oiled skillet over high heat. Sear tuna about 2 minutes (or less) on each side. Transfer to a warmed plate.
  5. Toss the greens with about 1 tablespoon of vinaigrette. Combine drained lentils with remaining vinaigrette.
  6. Portion greens among 3-4 serving plates; pile the lentils on top. Slice tuna into thin strips; fan out over the lentils.

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