Verdi salad

The Music is back in my kitchen.

The radio cassette that had been there for four years, and previously six at my former studio, and before that an unspecified number of years in my room at my parents´house. I was attatched to it, but the cd broke, and then the tape deck, and for years I´ve had to rely on the whim of radio djs for my music.

I´m very lazy about home improvement, but finally I dragged myself to Fnac, and elbowing my way past the throngs of ipod and mini-camera buyers, managed to bring home a new radio cassette. I know it´s something of an anachronism, but it does read Mp3 files.

I couldn´t be happier. At last I can chop mushrooms in time to Elvis, stir soups with Eartha Kitt, and wait for stock to bubble away while Batisti throbs his heart out.

One of my favourite kitchen tasks, and one that lends itself to silly arm waving and keeping time to music, is drying salad leaves in the spinner. I loathe a limp, wet lettuce, and since I think a salad spinner is a lot of fun, I insist on keeping it always to hand.

I also like to keep my salad colour coded. Green or red, but not both, which clashes with the Spanish culture of "ensalada mixta". I do love to mix different greens, though, in what I like to call, in a very dorky homage, Verdi salad. It´s not an every day salad, but one worthy of your most honoured guests.

Lettuce, preferably trocadero, although normal is fine, lamb´s lettuce, maybe one of those dark "oak´s leaf", and possibly a few spinach leaves. Ruccola, depending on what it´s going on the side of. I´m not crazy about frisé, but feel free.
The pièce de résistance is an avocado, ripe and buttery, almost dissolving into the dressing and giving the thing an unctuous kick.

I wash, shred and mix the leaves well beforehand, with the music blaring, of course. Since it´s Verdi we´re with, let´s have the bit in La Traviata where Alfredo crashes the party. That´s always a show stopper.

By the time the guests have arrived, I´ll have some adequate background music for the first drinks.
Then, when everyone´s at the table, I slice the avocado, douse the whole with my favourite vinaigrette, mix thoroughly, serve, and prepare to receive the compliments like a proper prima donna.

10 comentarios:

Raquel dijo...

Count me in!!!!

christianne dijo...

Sounds delicious! Glad to hear the music is back. My CD player is in the living room, but luckily my remote reaches it if you hang out the door of the kitchen at just the right angle!

Anónimo dijo...

I look forward to days when I can spend long, leisurely time in the kitchen with music playing. And music definitely makes kitchen cleanup faster, easier, and altogether less onerous.

And avocado in salads? Oh, yes!

Anónimo dijo...

Ooh, sounds very delish. I love avocado! On the other hand, I adore salads with bright, vibrant colors, though I won't turn yours down for its monochromaticism... it sounds absolutely wonderful.

Anónimo dijo...

You might want to find a place for your laptop in the kitchen.....I've just discovered Pandora.com, internet radio they call it. Key in the name of an artist you love and Pandora, bless its heart, will come up with a 'radio station' of artists it thinks you also might like. So much new music to discover... It's quite addictive.

Anónimo dijo...

I owe you some cds for your cooking environment, remember...to make some CSI tomatoe sauce!


Anónimo dijo...

So it's all green, sounds great especially with the avocado.
One of my very favorites in the kitchen is
YMCA - you can just really belt it out.
Love what you did at Neil's table!!!

Anónimo dijo...

For cooking I love Orbital. It's so cerebral and repetitive. and for clean up? NYC's finest, natch, the Beastie Boys! rapping along makes everything go faster!

Julie dijo...

That's funny about the salad spinner. It's one of those kitchen tools I can't bring myself to buy, although I have really wanted one for a couple years now. I think I just don't have the space, but then everytime I wash greens, I wish I have one. What to do...
I also just read your tomato sauce/Godfather post. Very nice writing!

Anónimo dijo...

I love your illustrations! They are whimsical and beautiful!You are very talented :)