Do Try This At Home: Comedor Chef Philip Speer’s Signature Salad

Follow a few simple steps to recreate one of the best salads in town

Photographs by Mackenzie Smith Kelley
Comedor Salad Recipe

Farm fresh is best when it comes to produce. And that’s especially true for salads that make the most of colors, flavors and textures to create a light and healthy meal or a side that steals the scene. If you enjoy making art in your kitchen by chopping, blending, tasting and arranging, we’ve got a recipe to try at home. Here, Comedor Chef Philip Speer walks us through his restaurant’s signature salad:

SALAD INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup pepitas
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 limes, juiced and zested, separated
1 poblano (deseeded)
1 serrano (keep seeds)
3 cloves garlic
1 medium tomatillo
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 leaf hoja santa
5 sprigs cilantro (including stem)
3 sprigs epazote leaf
5 sprigs parsley (including stem)
1 tablespoon avocado oil/olive oil
sea salt (preferably Maldon)
Pepita Dukkah (or nut mix or puffed grains)

FOR THE DRESSING:

1 leaf hoja santa
5 sprigs cilantro (including stem)
3 sprigs epazote leaf
5 sprigs parsley (including stem)
1 poblano (deseeded)
1 serrano (keep seeds)
3 clove garlic
1 tbsp white vinegar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 lime
1 medium tomatillo
1 tbsp avocado oil/olive oil

 

FOUND AT LOCAL PURVEYORS:

Spring mix: Bouldin Food Forest
Herb mix: HausBar Urban Farm
Market vegetables (seasonal): Highland Park Urban Farm, Steelbow Farm, Gundermann Acres

DIRECTIONS:

1. First, toast the pepitas to a golden consistency. Let soak for 1 hour in 1/2 cup of water, 1 teaspoon salt and juice and zest of 1 lime. Blend in Vitamix or food processor until fully incorporated.

2. Roughly chop the poblano, serrano, garlic and tomatillo so that they’ll blend easier in the food processor. Put the chopped vegetables, the juice and zest of the second lime, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and vinegar into the processor with the pepitas. Pulse to incorporate ingredients until dressing is loose and vegetables are pulverized.

3. Chop the hoja santa, cilantro, epazote and parsley and add them to the food processor. This will help break down the herbs into the dressing.

4. Blend in the oil to emulsify the dressing.

5. Adjust for taste with more salt, lime juice or vinegar.

RELATED: Inside the Journey from Farm to Table

TO ASSEMBLE THE SALAD:

1. Start by placing a pool of dressing on the bottom of a bowl.

2. Place a layer of greens atop the dressing so that the greens just cover the dressing, and lightly salt the greens with sea salt.

3. Using a small spoon, lightly dress the layer of greens with more dressing. Remember, a salad should be more like chips and dip and less like an overdressed, soggy pile of lettuce. Let’s celebrate the greens and taste each one!

4. In this next step, we like to add seasonal herbs from HausBar Urban Farm for taste and texture. Fresh herbs add a richness and complexity to the salad. Lightly dress some of the greens with a bit more dressing and more greens. Salt and herb up!

5. Next, add thinly sliced market vegetables: maybe some shaved radishes from Highland Park Urban Farm, some Broccolini tops from Steelbow Farm or some sliced carrots from Gundermann Acres. Add a bit more dressing, some salt, herbs and one last layer!

6. At Comedor, we finish with our Pepita Dukkah. At home, however, any nuts or puffed grains will work.

And there you have it, a delicious farm-fresh salad with ingredients sourced exclusively from our local producers.

RELATED: Set a Beautiful Table with Colorful Home Goods


Read More From the Food Issue | May 2021


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