June 8, 2010

Arugula Salad with Almonds and Parmesan

Many of the restaurants in Italy have the menu in Italian and English.  On the English part of the menu, I noticed the ingredient "rocket" listed at several restaurants.  Finally I asked a waiter what it was, and he said that it is "salad."  Huh?  Salad on pizza?  It just didn't make sense.  Finally several months after my trip, I found a recipe on a blog that used the term rocket, and I figured out it was arugula, a type of green.  The Italian word is rucula, so I guess rocket sounds close to that.  Anyway, I have had rocket on pizza (even before Italy), and it's fabulous!

I found this salad in Everyday Food magazine in an article which also explained the vegetable's several names, so I was destined to eventually figure it out.  This salad is very simple but a perfect blend of flavors.  Eat it while the almonds are still warm from toasting (toss in an ungreased pan on high heat for several minutes until slightly browned).

Arugula Salad with Almonds and Parmesan
from Everyday Food

1/3 c. toasted raw almonds
3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
coarse salt and ground pepper
1 bunch arugula (1/2 pound), trimmed
1/3 c. shaved Parmesan (1 ounce), plus more for serving

In a large bowl, combine almonds, oil, lemon juice, and vinegar; season with salt and pepper.  Add arugula and Parmesan and toss to coat.  Serve topped with more Parmesan.

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