Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Summer of Salad, Day Five:

Tonight, a triumph. From the New York Times list:
Dice cucumbers (if they’re fat and old, peel and seed them first) and toss with cubes of avocado, a little mirin (or honey, but then it’s not vegan), rice vinegar and soy sauce. (You could mix in a little lump crab meat, really not vegan, even rice, and call it a California roll salad.)
I have to admit I embellished the recipe a bit. I took the whole notion of an the abstracted sushi roll salad and ran with it. Admittedly, current budget constraints prompted me to use imitation crab meat instead of the actual stuff — unlike many, I don’t actually mind walleye pollock — and even sprinkled some of Aly’s dulse flakes into the bowl to give a suggestion of the seaweed wrapper. As for the dressing, I subbed a bit of agave nectar into the mix of rice wine vinegar and soy sauce. If honey can be substituted for mirin, then agave nectar can sub in for honey, I figured. I didn’t even know what mirin was before today, and though I’m sure I would have benefitted from having some, I don’t think the end result suffered much from its absence. Finally, I also chopped up a single tomato into the bowl, if only because I misremembered the ingredients list at the store and thought such an addition was required. It certainly didn’t harm the dish any.

Here’s the photo:

All things said, this salad was exceedingly easy and every bit as good as I hoped it would be. I recommend it — with the frab, for those who don’t mind a little culinary fakery, or with crab for those who insist in the genuine article.