Spring has sprung which means Sunday brunches go from winter warming to light and leafy! We've been testing out a few easy-to-make, travel-friendly spring salads that are ideal for your next outdoor brunch get together. TIP: Shave off some prep time by using the same dressing on all three salads!
ON THE MENU:
A TRIO OF SALADS TO COMPLEMENT YOUR main course:
sugar snap peas with meyer lemon and mint
fresh peas, herbs and butter lettuce salad
sliced avocado and orange salad
Sugar Snap Peas with Meyer Lemon and Mint
- 1 pound snap peas, trimmed
- 1 tablespoon Meyer lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon Meyer lemon zest
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon chopped mint leaves
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Fill a large bowl with water and ice. Set aside.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add snap peas and cook until just tender yet still crisp, about 2 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer snap peas to ice water.
Whisk all other ingredients together in large bowl. Drain snap peas and toss with the vinaigrette.
Fresh Peas, Herbs and Butter Lettuce Salad
- 1 cup fresh shelled peas (about 1 lb. unshelled) or frozen peas
- Kosher salt
- 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbs. meyer lemon juice
- 1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 small head butter lettuce, washed and dried, leaves torn into bite-size pieces
- 6 medium radishes, thinly sliced
- 4 scallions (white and light-green parts), thinly sliced on the diagonal
- 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 1/4 cup loosely packed fresh chervil leaves
- 2 Tbs. very coarsely chopped fresh tarragon
- 2 Tbs. thinly sliced chives
If using fresh peas, sample them. If they are young, sweet, and tender, keep them raw. If they are older and a bit tough, blanch them in a small pot of boiling salted water until just tender, 2 to 4 minutes. Drain and spread them on a baking sheet in a single layer to cool. If using frozen peas, thaw them by leaving them at room temperature or by running them under warm water.
In a small bowl, whisk the oil with the lemon juice, lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste.
Just before serving, toss the peas in a small bowl with 1 Tbs. of the dressing. Toss the butter lettuce, radishes, scallions, and herbs in a large bowl with just enough of the remaining dressing to lightly coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Avocado and Orange Salad
Such a pretty yet simple salad to brighten up your picnic brunch. To transport it you could stack the rounds in a mason jar!
Peel and slice 1 avocado and 1 orange into rounds. Layer on a plate, alternating. Sprinkle with cilantro and green onion (scallion). For a dressing, drizzle with olive oil and a pinch of sea salt. TIP: or use the leftover Meyer lemon and garlic dressing from the above salads!
About one avocado and one orange per person should do. For a group, multiply the recipe and display on a platter. I sliced the avocados around the middle (not lengthwise as usual) to make nice little circles the size of the orange slices. Add more or less of an herb sprinkling, according to your taste. Enjoy cold or at room temp!