I look forward to each spring in part because it brings an abundance of arugula to our garden. I really like the nutty, slightly peppery taste of fresh arugula – also called “rocket” – and I try, when using it in a salad, not to bury the flavor of the arugula with too many ingredients. A very lightly dressed salad of arugula, avocado, parmesan cheese and a couple other ingredients is perfect.
Don’t worry too much about exact measurements. As with most salads, you can increase or decrease the amounts of your favorite ingredients as you wish, and also experiment with other ingredients not listed.
- A big bunch of arugula, 4-6 cups, rinsed and dried
- A couple of glugs of extra-virgin olive oil — approx. 1-2 Tbs
- One glug of wine vinegar (I like to use Champagne vinegar) — approx. 1/2 Tbs.
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
- 3 Tbs. pine nuts (I like to toast them briefly in a dry skillet before using; it intensifies the flavor of the nuts.)
- 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 1 avocado — peeled, pitted and sliced
- Place the arugula in a large bowl. Drizzle the olive oil and vinegar over the arugula and toss. You just want to very lightly coat the delicate leaves, not soak them.
- Add salt and pepper, to taste.
- Add all the remaining ingredients except the avocado and toss well.
- Serve the salad on plates, garnished with the sliced avocado. If you add the avocado to the salad while tossing it, it gets mushy.
Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers.
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