Memorial Day wekend is always a treat, but after a few days of
stuffing our faces over-indulging we start to look for lighter fare. The garden and the farmers market always supply inspiration (and ingredients) but we also find plenty of simple, tasty recipes from other bloggers. And this is how we found this salad.
We recently discovered Danish Hygge, a blog about Danish life (we are big fans of Scandanavian design). It includes all sort of posts and photos about Danish design, people and culture, but also has some recipes. They had a post on salad with seasonal vegetables in a yogurt and dill dressing and it seemed light, healthy and flavorful, so we decided to give it a try.
The salad is a combination of greens, seasonal produce, smoked salmon and a “dressing” of dill and yogurt. Part of the fun of this salad is that you can add in almost any vegetable (even fruit) and get good flavors. In our case, we had radishes from our garden and early cucumbers and tomatoes from the farmers market and we always have carrots (ours still aren’t ready, sniff). As for the greens, our one recommendation is that you use sweet greens like butter lettuce, mache or even romaine rather than more bitter greens like arugula. The smoked salmon plays much better with sweet greens and the overall flavor of the salad is more harmonious.
We did tweak the recipe a bit to add more flavor. The dressing combines plain yogurt (nonfat or low-fat, we used low-fat), a bunch of fresh chopped dill, lemon juice, mustard, honey (or agave nectar), salt and pepper. We added a touch of hot sauce to the dressing to add a little heat and it worked very well. We also macerate a shallot in vinegar for a few minutes and then drizzle the slices over the salad. The sweet/sour nature of the macerated shallots are one of our favorite additions to salads and veggies.
The salad itself has a mixture of crunchy, earthy flavors of the veggies, creamy/tangy dressing and salty smoky salmon. It is a satisfying lunch or a good starter salad at dinner. The salad tastes great and is healthy, too. Finally, the dressing is good as a sauce for grilled vegetables, so if you have extra, don’t let it go to waste.
Smoked Salmon Salad With Yogurt-Dill Dressing:
(Adapted from Danish Hygge)
Notes Before You Start:
- Other smoked fish like trout or sturgeon will work in this salad. We used a strong and smoky lox, but Nova or other lighter-smoke salmon will work.
- Use whatever combination of fresh vegetables you like.
What You Get: A healthy full-flavored salad. A dressing you can use with pretty much any vegetable.
What You Need: No special equipment required.
How Long: 10- 15 minutes depending on how many vegetables you chop. This is an anytime dish.
(Serves 4 with extra dressing)
- 3/4 cup plain low-fat or nonfat yogurt
- 4 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
- Juice of 1/2 lemon (or to taste)
- 1 tablespoon honey or agave nectar
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 2 dashes of hot sauce (optional)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 pound smoked salmon cut into thin strips, across the grain
- 1 head of butter lettuce or romaine, or about 3-4 cups of mache or loose greens
- 1 large, ripe tomato cut into 1/2 inch chunks
- 4-6 radishes, thinly sliced
- 1 cup of sliced cucumber (about 1/2 of a large cucumber)
- 4 medium carrots, thinly sliced
- 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Thinly slice the shallot and place into a small bowl with the vinegar. Macerate at least 5 minutes.
- Slice all the vegetables and set aside. Slice smoked salmon and set aside.
- Combine all the dressing ingredients in a medium-sized bowl. Mix and taste, adjust seasoning to taste.
- Toss the greens with the olive oil and a pinch of salt.
- Assemble the salad. Arrange greens in the center of the plate. Place the slides vegetables around the greens. Place salmon on top of greens. Add a few tablespoons of dressing to each plate. Drizzle with macerated shallots. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.