09 April 2012
Cooking The Books: Addicted to The Unofficial Hunger Game Cookbook
Pretty isn't it? It's "Lovelorn Peeta Pita Wildflower Pockets" from The Unofficial Hunger Games Cookbook, de-pocketed as the "Tips from Your Sponsor" box said I could omit the pita and eat it as a big ol' salad.
Ingredients: edible flowers, mixed salad greens, lemon juice, maple syrup, kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper.
Just toss the mixed greens and edible flowers together, drizzle them with a mixture of maple syrup and lemon juice, season with salt and fresh ground pepper to taste and eat. It couldn't be easier. Well, it could. You could cheat and use your favorite bottled vinaigrette. That might shave 3 minutes off the recipe, but you'd be missing out on a really good thing. Maple syrup and lemon juice, while such a simple combination, make a surprisingly delicious dressing.
The hardest part of making this salad was finding edible flowers. I finally found a packaged mix of nasturtiums and pansies in the fresh herbs section of PriceChopper and they were good -- the nasturtiums a little peppery -- but it would have been cheaper and more seasonal to have held off and made this salad in May or June when my own flowers are in bloom. This salad looks pretty with nasturtiums, but violets or johnny-jump-up would work well for a Mother's Day salad.
For lunch, I served this salad with toasted pita bread on the side. I toasted the pita bread by brushing a pita with olive oil, quartering it, and toasting it in a 400°F oven for 10 minutes (flipping halfway through). The toasted pita was good, but next time I would sprinkle it with a little kosher salt or a seasoning blend like Penzeys Tuscan Sunset before popping it in the oven.
Since I bought more flowers than I needed for lunch, I made another version of this salad for supper. Instead of making more maple and lemon dressing, I used a splash of oil-free Pomegranate Vinaigrette from Cindy's Kitchen. I also added some leftover blueberries and corn to the salad.
(This salad was the sixth recipe I'd made from The Unofficial Hunger Game Cookbook and I have to say I'm really liking this cookbook. While it's not without its flaws, I've enjoyed every recipe I've tried and I can't say that of many other cookbooks).