Friday, 31 August 2012

Easy Peasy Ham Salad for the End of Summer

Did you know that tomorrow is September? I know, right? What the heck happened?

To a Canadian like me it is a mixed blessing. I can certainly say I have participated more in this summer than I generally do, and for that I am happy. And autumn is my favourite season, I love the crunchy leaves and the slight chill in the air. But autumn invariably leads to winter in Canada, we've yet to avoid it entirely.

I'm grateful for these last few days in which Mother Nature has turned the heat back up. A little reminder to enjoy summer while it lasts.

And since summer food is easy food, and nothing is easier than this ham salad - it seemed the perfect dish for the last day of August.

Lanie Bayless likens it to an Italian sub without the bun and I have to agree. Tangy and crunchy and delicious. Perfect for the end of a long sun-filled day.

And speaking of the end, we are coming to our last month of cooking with Rick Bayless over at I♥CC. It has been wonderful and all too short, but it is always exciting to see who we will be spending the next six months with. Looks like Madhur Jaffrey has won the vote by a landslide - so come October we will be spicing things up Indian style. I can't wait!

Ham Salad
adapted from Rick Bayless, Rick and Lanie's Excellent Kitchen Adventures
for I♥CC Out of Mexico

3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
¼ tsp ground black pepper
Kosher salt

½ lb cooked ham, ¼ inch thick, cut into batons
½ sweet onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, raw or roasted, cut into about 1½ inch strips
Half 3-inch long dill pickle, chopped
Small handful chopped parsley for garnish
Baby greens, for serving

In a salad bowl, combine all dressing ingredients well. Add in ham, onion, pickle, and red pepper. Toss well and pile up on a platter lined with baby greens. Serve.

Rick Bayless @IHCC button rounded IHCC