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Chef Jerry Gruber prepares Avocado Salad with Tomatoes and Cucumbers in a Strawberry Pomegranate Vinaigrette
Tags:Avocado Salad recipe,avocado salad with tomato and cucumbers,cheflive,jerry gruber,strawberry pomegranate vinaigrette
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Jerry Gruber: We are going to make a salad, Okay. Now, I feel it’s really important when we make anything that the ingredients we start with are very, very important. So, I am using organic baby spring mix and I am using organic rugula. I like to shop. I like to buy organic, so if I can its little more expensive but you guaranteed a better product. It tastes better and it’s a little bit afforded too. Thank you. This is my lovely assistant Gwen Hall. Okay, we are going to make a big serving, we need to feed a lot of people. Thank you very much. This is basically easy stuff, you can do it at home, no fuss, no muss. Get the good lettuce, its already washed, you don’t have to fool with it, don’t fool with those lettuces, no nutrients in it. The greener the vegetable, the better, the healthy it is for you, because there is more chlorophyll, and the photosynthesis in the chlorophyll. It’s a much better product when you are using greener.
And it taste better too. The iceberg, I mean you can put a lot for rough food on it and then it’s okay, but it’s not like real greens. So now, we are going to take some tomatoes, and we are going eat with our eyes first. So the bottom line is, we are going to make it little beautiful. So, its looks very appetizing, and you should do this with anything. You know when you go in a restaurant, they even have pictures up in the fast food restaurant, some little restaurants. What does it look like? I am going to eat it with my eyes first. So, we are going to eat out salad with the eyes first, and we are going to make it beautiful.
Now, we are going to make a homemade dressing. We are going to make strawberry vinaigrette. So, can you get these even? Okay, now we are going to put a little of red onion. Again, we are going for color, we are going to try to make it look really appetizing. Yeah, it looks like enough and, some cucus (cucumbers). The cucumbers, when you peel them its nice if you just, you don’t peel them all the way, just leave a little edge so it look pretty. Let me show you how to do that. This is real simple. I mean you don’t have to do this, you can peel the whole thing but I like it. So, here’s a little differentiation here. Now it looks pretty good. And then, with your knife, always try to guider with your knuckles, so you don’t cut yourself. And always try to cut a little bit away from yourself. You just want to do nice little slices, just like this. And move the knife, keep rested on your knuckles, don’t want to cut yourself. If you don’t want to do that, you can hold it here and do that. But, it looks, its actually easier to do with this way. That’s enough cucumber, okay.
Now, these are pine nuts. These are roasted pine nuts. So, I am going to put them nice roasted pine nuts on it. And then, I am going to put nice bleu cheese crumbles. Blue cheese kicks it up a whole notch. So now, just take and we are going to top it off a little bit. We are going to make strawberry vinaigrette, so I put a few strawberries on top. And then, you always want to give it a little, just a little bit of color, make it beautiful, here we go.
It’s simple, but elegant. I mean, it looks beautiful, it tastes beautiful, but its real easy. The key is to always start with the really good ingredients, that’s all to say. Buy the best ingredients you can buy, don’t skimp. So well, I buy iceberg, it only cost 89 cents ahead. Spend an extra 50 cents or whatever, and get the good greens, always try to do that.
Now, after we had made this, is this in anybody’s way? Okay, let me get a bowl. And just made a lot of salad. This is good olive oil, extra virgin olive oil. It comes in a pretty bottle, and extra virgin is the best. And we are going to start, maybe a cup and half of olive oil. When you sauté its not as important, because you bring up the heat, but when you are not, it’s really important you want use a good olive oil. And the mix is olive oil to balsamic vinegar, its four to one. So, we are going to put, this is just the Dijon mustard. I’m going to put two, two spoons of Dijon, okay thank you.
And lets see, go for a little bit of sesame oil in it, not much just a little bit. This is a secret ingredient, this is pomegranate concentrate. This is it’s a really, really healthy stuff, and it tastes good, and it gives it a nice little rosy color, this is really nice stuff. It’s the highest thing that is in antioxidants. So, its one of the, pomegranate is one of the healthiest things you can eat. We have this product here and I’ve been using it, and I am crazy about it. Now this is just a little Bristol cream, Harvey's Bristol Cream Sherry, this is my secret recipe for salad dressing, this is a fun dressing. So we’re just going to put a little bit of wine in it, little bit of Lea and Perrin. You can get, you can download it. You can download it, a little Tobasco. You can download, it will be perfect.
Gwen Hall: It’s soy sauce.
Jerry Gruber: Yeah, I know. This is another product we have here this is rennase dessert rubber. You can rub this on your fish or your meat, or you can use to season. And it’s another product, it’s got about 16 different things in it, and they are all good.
Its like one of those multi-blend seasonings, it has 2 to 3 different peppers in it. This is just some strawberry preserves. I suggest that you get a good one that’s made with juices, fruit juices rather than made with sugar. This fruit juices are okay, and sure it’s not quiet as okay. We want to kind of stay away from sugar. Now I don’t know, I like to have a little garlic. I’m going to show you a good trick for garlic. Its messy, it is papery, it gets all over your kitchen, we don’t like that. So we put it in a plastic bag and you just put it on like this and you just go, you squash the head, like that, and then you just take it out of the bag. Voila.
Now what I like to do, is just take it and take my knife, and just go like this. So just crushing it up, and then we chop it. And you want to try to get it, there’s two different ways to cut things, one way is you cut it chiffonade, which is a kind of roll up and cut it kind of big, or you do broom line. Broom line means that you cut it real fine, it’s a real fine dice. So, since we are going to be eating this raw, you don’t need a lot of garlic, and what we do put in, you really need to cut it up for nice and fine. You got a little more here. For the salad dressing for 35 people I would suggest like two cloves of garlic is plenty. It depends, a lot of people like Caesar’s salad, and they, like you know, I can eat lots of raw garlic. But whomever you are with and eating with, make sure they eat the same thing.
Do not eat garlic by yourself or note everybody will be going, ‘just stay over there’. Okay, beautiful. Now I am going to show you what I made. This is basil, this is fresh growing basil in the pot. You can by this almost anywhere like as Teddy Joe’s has it. Its very inexpensive, and you can buy herbs, but there is nothing better than having your own fresh herbs. And there is nothing fresh as in picking it right off the tree. So, we know that this is fresh, and if you can, try always to use fresh herbs. Don’t use the herbs that are powdered, or the herbs that are you know dried. They are all okay, if you can’t get anything else, but if you can get fresh, always do.
So we are just kind of rolling it up, like this in a little ball. And then, we are going to chiffonade it. And we don’t cut it up much, because we don’t want to leave all the essence on the board. We want to be in, still in the fresh basil. So, we just put the basil in here like this. Just like that. And, we whisk it in. And what a strawberry vinaigrette be without fresh strawberries? So, see what I have here! Some nice fresh strawberries. Isn’t that a miracle? Strawberries for strawberry vinaigrette. And putting the fresh strawberries doesn’t need fresh strawberries. But it is an enhancement. And when we cook food we build it in levels. We start, we keep building and building and building, and so we got a lot of different taste. And each taste, sour, sweet, spicy its all on a different part of your tongue.
So whatever we are tasting, its going to be just a little bit different. So, the best thing to do when you cook, is find a recipe that you are comfortable with. And then add things to it, subtract things to it. If you don’t like certain things, there are certain things you’ll love. So if you change your recipe, if you change two things in your recipe you own it, it’s yours.
So you can say this is my recipe, for you know but you just changed two things. So that’s fun to note it. Okay our dressing is done.