Last March we traveled to Scottsdale, Arizona for a little getaway before baby boy arrived…a Babymoon if you will. We went with friends of our who were also expecting a baby shortly after Connor was due. We had a very relaxing trip and enjoyed some really fabulous food. This was one of our favorite dishes, and that is saying a lot. I mean, it’s a salad. Everything at Cowboy Ciao was pretty amazing. It makes me sad that it’s so hard to get there from Pittsburgh. I guess it makes me feel a little better now that I know I can make this killer salad.
for the salad:
1 bag baby arugula, chopped
1 cup Israeli (or pearl) couscous, cooked according to package directions
1 cup dried sweet corn*
¾ cup diced tomatoes, seasoned with Italian spices & olive oil
2 ripe avocados, diced
½ cup good quality Asiago cheese, diced
¼ cup dried currants
½ cup toasted pepita seeds
Prep your tomatoes either the night before or a couple of hours before you want to serve the salad. Dice enough ripe tomatoes to yield about ¾ cup. Season with an Italian spice blend (oregano, basil, garlic, etc.) and drizzle with olive oil and set aside to marinate.
Prep the rest of the ingredients. When ready to serve, toss everything together in a large bowl and drizzle with the dressing.
*Dried sweet corn is sold at stores like Wegmans and Whole Foods. But if you can’t find it or don’t feel like running out, you can dump a cup of frozen corn onto a cookie sheet and bake it in a 300° oven for 30 minutes or so until it dries out and gets a bit crunchy.
for the pesto buttermilk dressing:
¼ cup buttermilk
¼ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup sour cream
¼ cup basil pesto (homemade or store bought)
1 small shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon grated parmesan cheese
juice of ½ lemon
salt & pepper to taste
Toss all ingredients into a food processor and pulse until smooth. Store in a jar or other airtight container. Keeps for about a week.
time: 30 minutes hands-on prep + tomato soaking time
adapted from: Cowboy Ciao