Bonjour les Amis ! Here I am today with a new Summer recipe. But this time, it is not a recipe I got from my grand-mother or from some old and dusty French cookbook. No, this one has been inspired by one of my favorite brunch places here in Chicago, Southport Grocery and Café. Every dish is made with homemade and local products and you can purchase a lot of grocery in store included a delicious rhubarb and strawberry jam!
When we were living close by, in Chicago Southport Corridor, I probably tried all the items of their menu, so when there is a new one, I can’t prevent myself to order it. That’s how, in early Summer, I had the best salad ever on a sunny terrace: Rosemary Apple Salad with Goat cheese, Sliced almond and cranberries, seasoned with a maple syrup vinaigrette. And everyone who knows me a little bit knows that I have never been a huge salad fan. To put it straight, I am more of a pizza person, deep-dish included!
I don’t have the original recipe, I haven’t asked for it, but I came out with a pretty satisfying result. I have prepared it so many times à la maison this Summer that it has already became one of my classics. It is perfect as a whole meal, when you have guests, as a side to a barbecue, or just for your lunchbox. Here is my version of the recipe.
Ingredients for 4 servings
- a small lettuce
- 4 tbsp sliced almonds
- 2 tbsp dried cranberries
- goat cheese
- one small apple – I use the honey crisp – cut in dices
Maple syrup Vinaigrette:
- 3 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar
- a sprig of rosemary
- 1 tbsp of Grey Poupon
- 1 tsp of maple syrup
- Salt and pepper
- Prepare the vinaigrette. You can do it the day before and chill it overnight to get a better rosemary taste. In a container with a tight-fitting lid, combine the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, Dijon mustard, maple syrup, rosemary, salt and pepper. Close the lid and shake well. Place the vinaigrette in the fridge.
- Wash the lettuce, spin-dry, tear the leaves into desirable size – it’s a never-ending bone of contention at home! – and place them in a bowl.
- Add the apple, cranberries, almonds, and goat cheese. At Southport grocery and cafe, the goat cheese was slightly broiled in the oven. I prefer when it’s fresh but it’s up to you!
- Pour the vinaigrette and toss before serving it.
Cooking tips: to add a French twist to that recipe, replace almonds with walnuts, goat cheese with blue cheese, cranberries with raisins and honey with maple syrup. De rien !