I made up a salad! I am quite excited about this … this is the way things are supposed to work. I had a bunch of ingredients (including WAY too many zucchini – if you can possibly believe such a thing about this time of year) so I said to myself “Self – how can we put these together so they taste better together than they do apart?” And the “Serendipity Salad” was born and got rave reviews on its first few outings.
Mind you, the name is misleading. I was able to put this together because we stay prepared. We always have pickled ginger (gari) on hand. We always have beautiful red onions, Canadian grown, shelled and frozen edamame, a selection of herbs and of course, the beautiful produce from our organic farm. Perhaps this salad needs a new name (suggestions welcome).
So here we go …
I love gari or, as you may know it, “sushi ginger”. I used to go to the Asian market and buy a bunch of jars of it to cook with. Then, one day I read the ingredients! Now we make our own – cheaper, healthier and much more fun.
Slice peeled ginger – young and firm is best – as thinly as possible, making sure you cut across the grain. A kitchen “mandolin” or V-cutter is useful for getting ginger paper thin. Be careful with this instrument, though! It is so sharp and you can get going at such a clip that it is easy to miss the transition from ginger to finger and we don’t want that! Place the ginger slices in a canning (heat resistant) jar.
At this point, you can add a couple slices of raw, peeled beet – to give it the traditional pink colour, if that is important to you. It won’t affect the taste but it is pretty. Just don’t add too much beet or it will turn out quite a surprising colour!
Bring to a boil …
2 c rice wine vinegar
1 T sea salt
½ c sugar or maple syrup or honey
When this liquid is boiling, pour it over the ginger in the jar – making sure to cover well. Allow it all to come to room temperature then lid and refrigerate. Let it sit in the fridge for 3 days before using. Make a lot, it’s good for you and your digestion (see my post “Ginger is the New Garlic”) and it lasts almost forever! Use the juice in salads or sauces.
2 hours before starting on the recipe … start the onions pickling!
Place in a steep-sided stainless steel or glass bowl …
2 c red onion – sliced thinly and attractively
Cover with red wine vinegar and add …
1 t salt
1 T black pepper
2 T maple syrup or sugar
Stir well and leave in a warmish place to pickle – stirring occasionally. The red colour will soften to pink and blur slightly and the harsh taste will soften as well.
8 c zucchini – very finely sliced (the mandolin works well here too)
1 c pickled red onion
1 c edamame (without shells)
¼ c sliced green onion
¼ c chopped cilantro
2 T slivered pickled ginger
Whisk together …
1/4 c pickled ginger juice
2 T lime juice
3 T toasted sesame oil
Whisk in slowly – to form an emulsion …
1/4 c vegetable (or other neutral-flavoured oil)
Dress the salad and garnish with black and white sesame seeds.
Enjoy! Wishing you a most felicitous fall! I hope this recipe will help you take care of any backlog of summer squash … freeing you up to take care of yourselves, our mother earth and each other! ❤