NAPA CABBAGE, CAULIFLOWER AND ENDIVE SALAD (winter white salad, “salade decomposee” at Halloween)

Salads, vegetable, Napa cabbage, cauliflower and endive salad (salade decomposee) 1 Salads, vegetable, Napa cabbage, cauliflower and endive salad (salade decomposee) 2

1 tablespoon whole-grain or coarse mustard

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

½ cup heavy cream

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon white pepper

½ medium head cauliflower (3/4 pound) stems discarded and florets cut lengthwise into ¼ inch slices (3 cups)

1 small bunch white asparagus (optional, depending on availability)

1 fennel bulb, shaved into transparent strips with a vegetable peeler

2 Belgian endives, leaves separated and cut diagonally into ½ inch pieces

1 small head frisee, leaves separated into small fronds and any dark green leaves discarded

1 small head Napa cabbage (1/2 pound), greenish outer leaves discarded and pale inner leaves cut crosswise into 1 inch pieces (5 cups loosely packed)

1 small white onion, finely chopped and soaked in cold water 10 minutes, then drained

  1. Whisk together mustard, vinegar, cream, salt and white pepper in a large bowl until blended.
  2. Blanch cauliflower in a 2 to 3 quart saucepan of boiling water 30 seconds, then drain and transfer to a bowl of ice water to stop cooking. Drain well and add to dressing in bowl.  If you are using asparagus, trim the stalks and steam them whole over rapidly boiling water for about 3 minutes.  Transfer to ice water to stop the cooking and drain them well, then add to dressing in the bowl.
  3. Add fennel, endives, frisee, cabbage and onion, tossing to coat.  Season with salt and pepper.


adapted from Gourmet Magazine, December, 2003

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