How It All Started

Bob Phillips

The title of this blog was inspired by one of my Spanish professor's at Miami University of Ohio, Dr. Robert Phillips, who died in the e...

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Strawvacodo Salad

It is summer concert season again, when we return to Westport Rivers -- our favorite local vineyard -- for a weekly picnic with live music and excellent wine. (This season is off to a bit of a rough start, thanks to onerous reinterpretation of puritanical liquor laws. But this is still the place to be for the summer.)

Westport Rivers supports area businesses, so that a raw bar, food truck, or both are usually part of the event. Even if we try some of those items, though, this is a picnic so we always bring some or all of the food we are going to want. Pam turned to Intercourses, the cleverly-named romantic cookbook that we have cited many times on this blog, and found another winner.
Not only is this a case of a book cover that is more photogenic than the actual food; it is also a reminder of just how passionate the authors are about this particular ingredient.
Strawberry and avocado salad brings together two ingredients that each warrant a whole chapter in this book -- buy the book to enjoy all of the rhapsodizing about these two fruits. For now, the basics: chill a dressing and chop a bunch of produce.

1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup raspberry vinegar (we used blackberry-ginger balsamic from L.O.V.E., our aptly-named favorite provider of infused oils and vinegars, run by a fellow UMBC alumna)
1-1/2 T sugar
1/4 t hot sauce
1/4 t salt
1/8 t pepper
1/4 t cinnamon

1 head romaine (we used about half a head of green lettuce -- not iceberg -- making the sensual ingredients all the more prominent)
1 orange, sectioned then halved (the recipe calls for half a can of mandarin oranges, but fresh seemed a better choice)
1/2 cup sliced onion (we used a few scallions)
1/4 cup toasted pecans (toasted them myself in a cast-iron skillet)
1/2 avocado (this made no sense to me -- I used a whole one)

Pam made the dressing; I prepared the produce. We tossed it all in a bowl and took it to the vineyard -- perfectly paired with Cinco Cães, the lovely sunset, and the lyrical stylings of Rebecca Correia.

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