Aaaaand we’re still hot—really hot. As much as we long to get our soup pots a-bubbling and red meats a-roasting, the 100-plus degree temperatures persist and keep us aboard the salad train. Here, with a recipe that incorporates some of that fall produce into a dish suitable for hot weather is Govind Armstrong, Post & Beam chef and one of Los Angeles magazine’s Chefs of the Year! These days, cavolo nero (also known as Lacinato kale, black kale, or Tuscan kale), is a trendy ingredient year round, but traditionally it’s considered more of a hardy winter green. Pop some torn leaves into this salad of beets, watermelon (it’s still around!), and goat cheese for a summer-in-October dish that’s tailor made for L.A. Armstrong uses a smoked goat cheese for more depth, but any fresh chèvre will do.
Ingredients for the Vinaigrette:
1 Small Orange cut in half
Orange juice to cover (about 1 cup)
1 Diced Shallot
1 tablespoon Whole Grain Mustard
1 tablespoon Honey
¼ cup Sherry Vinegar
½ cup Olive Oil
Heat a small sauce-pan to medium add the orange cut side down and allow to caramelize until golden. Add the juice and reduce to a syrup like consistency and cool to room temperature. Once cooled, add all except the oil to a blender and puree until smooth then drizzle in the oil and adjust the seasoning.
Ingredients for the Salad:
2 bunches young Kale (cavolo nero) washed & torn into bite sized pieces
2 bunches mixed baby beets (roasted and quartered)
1 Petite Seedless Watermelon approx 1 cup cut into ¾” dice (tossed in Pickled jalepeno brine)
¼ cup Toasted Almonds
¼ cup Smoked Goat Cheese
In a large bowl place all ingredients except the goat cheese, drizzle in desired amount of vinaigrette and gently toss. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper, divide into 8 salad bowls, garnish with the smoked goat cheese and serve.