You know the drill: summer weather hits and salads begin to appear as meals. Who doesn’t look forward to it since A) you don’t need to use the oven, and B) you can make use of seasonal, fresh ingredients. Simple Summer Escarole Salad includes simple ingredients, but the flavors are robust and wonderful.
My parents grew and ate escarole, and as a kid, I never really liked it. This leafy lettuce had a bitter flavor that always made me think there was something wrong with it! For me, escarole is just another of those foods I didn’t like when I was young, but sure do today.
The outer leaves of escarole are darker and a bit tougher, and the inner leaves are pale and tender. Often, the tougher leaves are used in soups or are sautéed to use in a variety of dishes.
I don’t watch a lot of morning television, but on the weekends, the TV is on in the a.m. as my husband and I pick up around the house lounge. As we scrolled through the channels, we stopped on a show with beautiful Italian scenery. It was an episode of Giada in Italy.
On this particular episode, Giada made this salad for her friends. As I watched Italy flash before me, I started daydreaming about eating this salad on beautiful patio near the Italian coast… I interviewed Giada for work several years ago, and she was so kind and made me feel like we were friends just hanging out and chatting. That was definitely one of the more fun parts of the job. But back to the salad!
I loved the avocado in this salad (everything’s better with avocado), and I couldn’t wait to make it myself. It reminded me of a salad my Italian parents would have served. I had leftovers of this salad, and added chickpeas to the mix the second time around. That was good, too!
Simple is always good, which is why I love this Simple Summer Escarole Salad. The lightly bitter escarole goes well with the creamy and mild avocado, the buttery Castelvtrano olives (they’re bright green and pretty, too), sweet tomatoes, and the sprinkling of toasted pine nuts.
You only need olive oil and vinegar to dress this salad, and I’m telling you that you’ll be amazed by the full flavors your get with each bite. Simple as simple can be and full of flavor!
You should add Simple Summer Escarole Salad to your warm-weather repertoire. After one bite, you’ll be glad you did! This serves 4-6 easily.
This simple salad is anything but simple when it comes to flavor. The ingredients combine to bring something special to your warm-weather salad!
- 1 head escarole, washed, dried and torn or chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 3-4 medium-sized tomatoes, quartered
- 2 avocados, peeled, pitted, and cubed
- 1/4 cup Castelvtrano olives, flesh sliced off the pits
- 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
- Olive oil and white balsamic vinegar for dressing
- Add the escarole, tomatoes, avocado, olives and pine nuts to a large bowl.
- Drizzle the olive oil and vinegar over the top, toss to combine, and serve on individual plates.