Friday, June 24, 2011

The Poor Man's Cobb Salad

I don't think I've ever made Cobb salad at home before. I would even say that after tonight's dinner I still have never made Cobb salad at home. What I made tonight was something of an affront to all that is holy and sacred about this Hollywood Brown Derby creation.

The Poor Man's Cobb Salad

I'm sure there are many purists out there that will argue about exactly what does and does not go on top of a Cobb salad. For the purposes of not shopping and cleaning out our pantry I am going to define a Cobb salad as a salad with toppings that are neatly lined up in rows. Most of what I put on top of this salad would be considered atypical.

From left to right we have: hearts of palm, green onion, shallots, mixed olives, crushed macadamia nuts, bacon, shrimp, and artichoke hearts. I also made a dressing with sour cream, mayonnaise, whole grain mustard, honey mustard, hot sauce, Worchestershire sauce, salt, and pepper. I made way too much of this dressing so I'm probably going to end up throwing half of it away. Since the sour cream was going to spoil anyway I suppose it doesn't matter.

This salad was pretty delicious but I discovered the problem with Cobb salad: it looks beautiful but there's one ingredient missing from every Cobb salad . . .

Salad Mixing Bowl

A bowl to mix it in!

Mixed Cobb Salad

After tossing it together with the dressing it loses a little visual appeal but it sure makes it a heck of a lot easier and tastier to eat. I guess that's just technology for you. When the Cobb salad was invented in the 1930s they probably hadn't discovered mixing bowls yet.

Penne with Spinach, Bacon, Shallots, and Cream

Cobb salad, I guess, should probably be a main course. For some reason I had it in my head that since it was a salad I should make a main course to go with it. An unnecessary main course. I guess it's been longer than I thought since I've made a Cobb salad.

For this pasta dish I used a little remaining bacon, shallot, garlic, butter, and cream to make a sauce. After I cooked it down for a bit I tossed in some cooked penne and the summer spinach from the week's share along with some freshly grated nutmeg. Even with all the heavy items in the sauce I used so little that it ended up being lighter than you would think, even when topped with some grated Parmigiano-Reggiano.

Butternuts Weissebier

To accompany these dishes I had another summery weissebeer, this time from Butternuts Beer & Ale in Garrattsville, New York. They brag on their website that this weissebeer tastes better than German Weissebeer because it has to travel about 5,000 miles less to get to your mouth. I have to admit that it was pretty good but the German weissebeer I had the other night tasted pretty damn good too.

Phew. Made it through another night. Taking tomorrow off but Sunday's dinner may be a bit of a challenge. It may be some stale bread with a jar of pasta sauce.

Jen thinks we should go out for dinner. She's probably right but at this point it's just a matter of pride. If we go out for dinner then the terrorists win.

They hate us for our freedom.


Lisa Marie said...

That salad dressing is my worst nightmare. So many condiments :(

Unknown said...

So creamy and delicious.