Friday, December 4, 2009

Winter Salad

It's almost the end of the term and, in our program, the end of the term means it's time for a party. ESL program parties are great because we get to try tasty foods from all over the world. I've had fabulous Cuban chicken and rice, Vietnamese spring rolls, Mexican tacos, and Turkish baklava made with homemade filo dough. All amazing stuff.

One of the Russian or Ukrainian students will inevitably bring a Russian salat, a layered salad of boiled potatoes, peas, carrots, cucumber, and hard cooked egg, carefully arranged and glued together with copious amounts of mayonnaise. It's not bad, but I find a little goes a long way.

I found a Central Asian take on the potato based layered salad in Darra Goldstein's The Vegetarian Hearth which is a wonderful resource for hearty, meatless meals for the colder months. The mayonnaise is replaced by a garlicky nut and herb based dressing which makes the vegetables positively sing.

I wish I could say this salad is a snap to make, but it isn't. It's fussy and there are beets involved. But it's the prettiest vegetable dish you'll ever find on a winter table and it tastes fresh and full of life. I hope you'll give it a try.

Printable recipe here.

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