RISE & SHINE KAUT43 OKC
Ah, the joys of summer cooking and the salad dinner! When it’s too hot to cook, or you’re really just in the mood for “salad night” there’s nothing quite like the ease off pulling out the leaves, raiding the summer garden, and searching the pantry and fridge for easy accompaniments.
There are, and can be, aspects of actually cooking. Otherwise, they tend to be easy on the oven or stove and possibly the grill. That’s what we’re going to accomplish this week on the In The Kitchen With Scotty segment of “Rise & Shine.”
The Wedge Salad is a popular and hearty salad option at some more exceptional restaurants; my experience with them has been at steak or chophouses. Heads of Iceberg Lettuce, but into hearty fourths, loaded with creamy blue cheese dressing, crumbled bacon, cheese, and tomatoes. I like the idea, but have decided to add my own personal touch; there is nothing wrong with you doing that either!
Take my queue for the wedge salad, using non-traditional ingredients like mine:
Heads of Romaine lettuce
…and come up with your own version, or you may use my idea. Either way, it is your salad and your summer dinner. Enjoy!
Scotty’s Wedge Salad - Serves 6
3 heads of fresh Romaine, trimmed of outer leaves, halved lengthwise, washed thoroughly
*Homemade Roquefort Dressing
3 Hard-Cooked Eggs, quartered
Summer Tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup Frozen Edamame or fresh Green Peas
* See Recipes Below
Place the halved, trimmed and washed RRomaine on a platter, cut side up. Dress generously with the Roquefort dressing.
Add to each romaine half, crumbled chicken chicharrones, pickled corn, diced tomatoes, edamame or peas, and quartered hard-cooked eggs.
You may prepare 30 minutes or less ahead of time before serving. Serve cold and enjoy!
For The Roquefort Dressing
Roquefort Dressing is something that you can thank my mother for. Anytime at a restaurant, when a salad accompanies a meal, the server would always ask “What type of dressing would you like?” My mother’s response would be “Do you have Roquefort?”. This was always understood by the server to mean “Blue Cheese”, and of course worked fine from the nineteen-seventies up until the early nineties. Now when she asks the poor young server responds with “Huh?” or “Yeah, we don’t have that kind”.
Yes I have asked her to say “Blue Cheese”, yet “Roquefort” it still remains.
5-ounce wedge of Roquefort blue cheese (may also use your choice of blue)
1 cup good quality mayonnaise
1 cup sour cream or crème fraîche
2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 large clove fresh garlic, grated
1/2 teaspoon In The Kitchen With Scotty “Cook’s Line Seasoning” or salt and pepper to taste
3/4 cup whole buttermilk
Chef Tip: Freeze the Roquefort cheese because we are going to grate a portion of it into the dressing. I find grating 3/4 of the wedge as opposed to “crumbling” up this soft French blue cheese makes the dressing more consistent in flavor and distribution of cheese throughout the dressing. The last 1/4 of the wedge you can cut up in large pieces for the “blue cheese dressing” appeal.
Place the mayo, sour cream, Worcestershire sauce, Cook’s Line Seasoning, and garlic in a small mixing bowl. Grate half to three-quarters of the frozen Roquefort cheese into the bowl, and cut the remaining cheese into small pieces. Set the remaining portion.
Add the buttermilk to the bowl and mix everything together until smooth and creamy. Add the remaining Roquefort cheese to the dressing and fold in to combine. Taste for any additional seasoning. Cover and place in the fridge.
For The “Chicken Chicharrones”
So we know chicharrones are sumptuous deep-fried pig skin, or Pork Rinds, and a real treat when you don’t think about what they really are. My chicken chicharrones are basically oven crisped chicken skin… and they are WONDERFUL! Crisp and salty like Sunday morning bacon, and so full of flavor. We’ll be crumbling these up for the salad, but I have also used them in pasta dishes, or as savory “chips” for cocktail parties. I encourage you to make extra, you can thank me later.
3-4 chicken thighs, or any desirable “skin on” cuts of chicken
In The Kitchen With Scotty seasoning (I used Cook’s Line, or you may use salt and black pepper)
3-4 sprigs Fresh Thyme
Peel the skin off of any cut chicken pieces. I prefer to use the skin from the thigh because it is easier to pull off, and it tends to be fattier.. which lends itself to more flavorful and crispy chicken skins. You will only need three to four thigh skins for the salad, but definitely cook all you can at once.
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Your baking sheet will need to have a lip on it because we’re rendering down the fat in the skin; Use a jelly roll pan or a sheet cake pan.
Lay the whole skin pieces out onto the pan, flat and smooth. Give each piece enough room on the pan so it can do all of its tasty magic. Sprinkle the tops with your favorite In The Kitchen With Scotty seasoning, or salt and pepper, then sprinkle on the fresh thyme.
Cover the skins with another layer of parchment paper then stack a smaller sheet pan on top. This second cooking pan will ensure the skins remain flat that yields a nice flat and crispy “chicharron.”
Place in a 375-degree oven and bake for 15-18 minutes. Remove the chicken chicharrones to a paper towel, as you would for bacon, and set aside until needed. These chips last as long as bacon would. If you like cold soft bacon pieces in something, then refrigerate any leftovers.
For The Pickled Corn - makes one 16 ounce jar.
I first made Pickled Corn for the latest issue (July-August 2019) of Edible OKC Magazine in a recipe for my Potato Chip Stack. Pickled sweet corn is amazing and goes well on anything! Keep a jar in the fridge, you will want to add it to everything!
1 1/2 cups fresh summer sweet corn, approximately 2 ears (may use freshly frozen)
1 serrano pepper, split in half
3/4 cup white balsamic vinegar (may use any sweet white vinegar)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
Place the corn kernels and serrano pepper halves in a clean 16 oz. jar. If using fresh frozen corn, be sure to thaw completely.
In a small non-acid reactive sauce pot add your vinegar, sugar, and salt. Bring the pickling liquid to a boil then immediately pour into the jar covering the corn. Place the lid tightly on the jar and let it cool to the touch.
Once cooled, place the jar in the refrigerator and let it chill overnight. Keep the pickled corn refrigerated after each use.