EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

May 17, 2013

Spicy salad for the spring

Brassica greens' peppery notes give dish kick

The Eagle-Tribune

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Spring is officially here, the sun is shining, and that means one thing: fresh fruits, ripened vegetables and amazing food.

Chef and farmer Andy Varela has developed an easy and simple way to put spring vegetables to good use. Specifically, Varela prepares a delicious mustard green salad with fresh vinaigrette dressing

Red mustard, tatsoi and scarlet frills are all in the brassica family, otherwise referred to as mustard greens. They have a savory, peppery taste.

If you are not familiar with mustard greens, “they go great in a salad, or also into a sauté application,” Varela tells us.

This combination of greens, as well as the vinaigrette that Varela prepares, has a spicy kick that you’re sure to recreate over and over again. This salad is truly unique and tasty, with a few ingredients you may be expecting, and a few you’re not.

The mustard greens pair well with the mustard in the vinaigrette, and will delight your table guests with a unique spin on a classic garden salad.

Spring Greens Salad


2 cups red mustard greens

2 cups tatsoi

2 cups scarlet frills

1 bunch cilantro

1 bunch green onions

2 to 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard (or to taste)

1/2 cup cider vinegar (or to taste)

1/2 cup canola oil (or to taste)

1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)

1 teaspoon pepper (or to taste)


1. In a large bowl, tear the greens into smaller pieces, in order to make eating manageable. Season the greens with salt to sweat out any excess liquid, and add a pinch of pepper.

2. Prepare the dressing in a medium sized-food processor. To make the dressing, remove the ball roots from the green, or spring onions. Chop them into small pieces and place in the food processor.

3. To the food processor, add Dijon mustard, and cider vinegar. Blend these ingredients together until smooth.

4. Chop cilantro leaves into smaller pieces before adding them to the food processor as well.

5. Add salt and pepper, and blend until the dressing is smooth.

6. Add canola oil until you have reached your desired consistency and taste.

7. Dress the salad with a few tablespoons of dressing, and toss well to coat all the leaves.

8. For service, add a little extra dressing on the side to each plate for the diners.


Recipe courtesy Andy Varela, Maitland Mountain Farm, 2013.