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crisp spring salad


Now that the school year is coming to an end we are back in the potluck season. I always like to bring something healthy and am feeling inspired by all the fresh spring vegetables right now. I've made this twice in the past cople of weeks, swapping out the haricots vert and using sugar snap peas and shelled peas from the farmer's market the second time around. The beauty of this salad is that it remains crisp even after being dressed, so it is great for a party where things need to be made ahead, and it is big enough to serve a crowd. 



I wanted to have some greens mixed in with all the crisp vegetables so I started with the kale salad recipe I posted last week. I made it first and set it aside while preparing the rest of the vegetables. I blanched a bunch of asparagus, and 1 pound of haricots vert (see below). Add 1 small bulb of fennel, 1 bunch of radishes, 3 persian cucumbers, all thinly sliced, and 1 small jicama, peeled and cut into matchsticks.


For the dressing combine teaspoon dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon honey, 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar, 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 1 teaspoon sea salt, and a few grinds of black pepper. 


Combine the kale salad, mixed vegetables, dressing, and a handful each of basil leaves and mint leaves. I also threw in some of the fennel fronds. Toss to combine.



To blanch the asparagus and haricots vert bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the beans and asparagus separately since the cooking times will vary depending on how thick the asparagus is. I blanched the beans for about 2 minutes and the asparagus for 2-3 minutes.  Remove the vegetables using a slotted spoon or pair of tongs and shock them in an ice bath so they remain crisp and bright green. Once the vegetables are cool remove them from the ice bath and drain in a bowl lined with paper towels. 

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