Chef Nick Martschenko from South End Restaurant in New Canaan created this terrific fresh salad from beans, frisee, radishes, a walnut pesto and a fresh egg last Thursday at the Westport Farmer's Market. You can duplicate it in half an hour or less and wow your guests. He was helped in this demonstration by his young son, who prepared the walnut pesto and gave out the sample salads.
- ½ lb yellow wax beans
- ½ lb green beans or fava beans
- 1 bunch breakfast radishes or globe radishes
- 8 oz frisee greens (also called chicory)
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Cook the beans for about 5 minutes or until tender. Drain the beans and refresh under cold water and put them in a bowl. Split each bean lengthwise.
- Then slice the radishes, and add them and the frisee greens to the bowl.
- ½ cup walnuts
- Olive oil
Combine walnuts and olive oil in a food process (or use a mortar and pestle) and puree until you have a coarse paste. Season with salt and pepper.
The Chicken Egg
- 4 chicken eggs (one for each diner)
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs, pulsed in food processor
- ½ cup flour
- 2 eggs for egg wash
- Place the 4 eggs in a medium pot and fill with cold water, covering the eggs by an inch.
- Set over medium high heat and bring to a boil.
- Turn off the heat, cover and let stand 2-3 minutes.
- Cool the eggs, and remove the shells
- Beat the remaining 2 eggs together with a Tb of water for an egg wash,
- Dredge the eggs in the flour, and then in the egg wash.
- Roll each egg in the panko crumbs.
- Heat canola oil to 350 F and deep fry the eggs for 2-3 minutes until golden brown.
- Drain the eggs on a paper towel.
Assembling the salad
- 1 oz chervil
- 1 small bunch parsley, chopped
- 2 tsp lemon juice
- In a large bowl, combine the vegetables, frisee, walnut paste, lemon juice and fresh herbs.
- Divide the vegetables among 4 plates, top each with a fried egg and drizzle each salad with olive oil.
- Split each egg just before serving.
In the demonstration, Chef Martschenko used little quail eggs on his miniature salads, to keep them to scale, They were delicious.