Many farmers grow delicate mixed salad greens known as cut-and-come-again lettuces. Harvesters snip them at the base with knives or scissors rather than pull them up by the roots; if the weather cooperates, the greens will grow again. Farmers typically wash lettuces in big tubs and spin them drysome use a washing machine on the spin cyclebut its a good idea to repeat the washing at home.
The small, squat Fuyu persimmons are firm when ripe. Their skin should be the color of pumpkin, with no sign of green.
Serves 4 to 6
1 large shallot, minced
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons walnut oil
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 large fennel bulb
2 ripe but firm Fuyu persimmons
1/4 pound mixed baby salad greens
2/3 cup walnut halves, toasted and coarsely chopped
1. To make the dressing, put the shallot and vinegar in a small bowl. Whisk in the walnut oil and olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
2. Halve the fennel bulb again lengthwise. With a mandoline or other manual vegetable slicer, or with a sharp chefs knife, slice the fennel crosswise as thinly as possible.
3. Cut out the persimmons cap, then peel the persimmons and cut in half through the stem end. With the mandoline or other vegetable slicer, or with the sharp chefs knife, slice each half crosswise as thinly as possible. Remove any black seeds; some persimmons have them, some dont.
4. Put the baby greens, fennel, persimmons, and walnuts in a salad bowl and toss gently to mix. Add just enough dressing to coat the salad lightly; you may not need it all. Taste for salt, pepper, and vinegar. Serve immediately.
Originally published in Eating Local: The Cookbook Inspired by America's Farmers. Reprinted with permission.
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