Recipes/ Restaurants/ Travel

New Ideas for Salad: Orange-Vanilla Vinaigrette & Braised Greens

Aside from the sunshine, doing nothing and umbrella drinks, eating local is one of the best things about vacation. I love those trips where the biggest decision I’ll have to make on any given day is what to eat next.

On our recent trip to Tofino, BC, many of the restaurants in town featured greens from Nanoose Edibles Farm in Nanoose Bay, BC. One of the best was this salad at the Long Beach Lodge Resort with Nanoose Edibles greens, Okanagan Happy Days goat cheese, toasted hazelnuts and strawberries with a citrus and vanilla vinaigrette.

The citrus was subtle — the menu said it was grilled, but I didn’t get any kind a smoky or grilled flavor from it. I’d use a mix of orange juice (not concentrate) and lemon juice, and vanilla bean rather than extract. I actually had the salad twice (the view from the Great Room is fantastic), the first time the greens were crunchy lettuces (which I preferred), the second time more of a mesclun mix. I wish more restaurants would ditch the mesclun, when will that day come?!

Another interesting salad from this trip was the Chevre Salad at Shelter. The greens were a mix of braised purple kale and (I think) chard with caramelized onions, more Okanagan goat cheese, bacon, an apple cider vinaigrette, and a sweet balsamic reduction. Served warm, it actually felt more like a winter-spring salad than summer, and it’s an idea I’ll file away for the chillier months of the year.

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