Chino Chopped Vegetable Salad


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Wolfgang PuckIn springtime and summer, when cooks enjoy their pick, literally, of the widest variety of wonderful produce, there's nothing I like better than starting dinner with a vegetable salad - or even enjoying a larger version as a lunchtime main course. Carrots, string beans, artichokes, celery, tomatoes, onions, corn and lettuces - I just can't get enough!

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Serving Size / Yield

4 servings


  • 1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • 3 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 C. olive oil
  • 1/2 C. almond oil
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Freshly ground white pepper
  • 2 medium fresh artichokes
  • 1/2 C. diced carrots
  • 1/2 C. diced green beans
  • 1/2 C. diced red onion
  • 1/2 C. diced radicchio
  • 1/2 C. corn kernels
  • 1/2 C. diced celery
  • 1 small vine-ripened tomato
  • 1 small ripe Hass-style avocado
  • 4 tsp. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Freshly ground white pepper
  • 1 C. mixed baby greens

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First, make the vinaigrette: In a mixing bowl, stir together the mustard and vinegar. Whisking continuously, slowly pour in the oils. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside. For the salad, first prepare the artichokes. Starting at the broad base, break off the leaves by snapping them downward, working round and round until only a cone of tightly packed inner leaves remains halfway up from the base. With a sharp stainless-steel knife, cut off the top third to reveal the fibrous choke nestled inside the heart. With a sharp stainless-steel paring knife, peel off the remaining dark-green skin.

Then, with a small, sharp-edged spoon, dig out the choke to leave the C.-shaped heart. Cut the heart into 1/4-inch dice. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Fill a mixing bowl with ice cubes and water. Put the artichoke, carrots and green beans in a wire sieve, lower into the boiling water, and cook until tender-crisp, 2 to 3 minutes; then, plunge into the ice water to stop the cooking. Drain well and add them to the artichokes, along with the diced onion, radicchio, corn and celery. Keep the water boiling and the ice water ready.

With the paring knife, core the tomato and score a shallow X in its skin. With the sieve, lower the tomato into the boiling water to loosen its skin, about 30 seconds, then remove it and plunge it into the ice water. Drain well. Peel off the skin. Cut the tomato in half, scoop out the seeds with your fingertip, and cut the tomato into 1/4-inch dice. Add to the other vegetables. Halve, pit, peel and dice the avocado and add it to the vegetables. Briefly whisk the dressing again and add most of it to the vegetables, reserving a few Tbs.

Toss well, sprinkle in the Parmesan, and toss again. Adjust the seasonings to taste with salt and pepper. Toss the greens with the reserved dressing, season to taste, and divide among 4 chilled salad plates. Mound the chopped salad on top and serve immediately.

(Chef Wolfgang Puck's TV series, "Wolfgang Puck's Cooking Class," airs Sundays and Wednesdays on the Food Network. Also, chef Wolfgang Puck's latest cookbook, Wolfgang Puck Makes It Easy, is now available in bookstores. Write Wolfgang Puck in care of Tribune Media Services Inc., 2225 Kenmore Ave., Suite 114, Buffalo, NY. 14207.)



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