Dana Treat – Treat Yourself

Sometimes Tastes Change

Posted February 21, 2012

Watercress Salad with Marinated Figs and Walnut Dressing

Adapted from Vegetarian
Serves 4

½ cup balsamic vinegar
¼ cup sugar
2 garlic cloves, bruised
6 thyme sprigs
6 plump figs, halved
4 tbsp. walnut oil
4 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 bunch watercress, leaves trimmed, stems discarded
2-3 ounces baby arugula
8 slices Brie or Camembert
Small handful of walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped

Place the vinegar, sugar, garlic and 4 of the thyme sprigs in a saucepan and add ½ cup of water.  Bring to a boil and simmer for a minute to dissolve the sugar.  Cook for another 3 minutes then set aside to cool for 5 minutes.  Pour over the halved figs and leave to marinate for an hour or two.

Discard the thyme sprigs and garlic from the marinade and spoon about 5 tablespoons into a small lidded jar.  Strip the leaves from the remaining thyme sprigs and add to the jar with the walnut oil, olive oil, mustard, a pinch of salt, and a few grinds of pepper.  Screw on the lid and shake well to make the dressing.  Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.

Heat a non-stick pan over medium-high heat and sear the drained figs, cut sides down, for a minute or so until they caramelize.  Remove the pan from the heat, turn the figs over and set aside.

In a large bowl, place the watercress, arugula, and walnuts.  Sprinkle with a pinch of salt.  Drizzle the dressing over top, you will not need all of it, and toss well.  Serve onto salad plates and tuck the figs and cheese among the leaves.



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