Sunday, August 19, 2012

I Love Weekend | Early Market Trip and Salads

Just for the lack of it, I am naming this salad this way.

Yesterday, after a few rounds of jogging with my team mates in Cebu Business Park Phase 3, and a round of Coach Jim Saret’s 4-minute workout plus an additional “50 workout” , I headed to Carbon Public Market to see what’s in store for me that early Saturday morning. This is me, I find going to any public market an exciting travel. I’m very much eager to see fresh produces, and it always awes me. I am a proud son of a farmer, and this I think is the reason why I have a soft spot in my heart for farming and farmers, and for fresh produces.

As usual, I roam around without anything in mind. I bought santol and was amazed at P1.00/piece (imagine!), so I grabbed ten pieces. I probably can make a santol juice out of it. Beside it is an old lady is selling shiny avocadoes so I bought two kilos. Jicamas (singkamas) is not in season but I still managed to buy a kilo. I saw this lady selling fresh mongo bean sprouts, as in literally freshly harvested, not the kind you buy in the supermarkets. It is firm and I can already hear the sounds when I bite it. No blemishes, no wilts, just the way I want it for my raw salad. I also bought the bago leaves (see related facebook post about it) and told my self to find time how to use it in my cooking. And I went home happy.

And so that's what I have done, a plateful of the day’s fresh pick.

What’s usually good in a salad is you tend to explore more on the dressing. Without the dressing, your vegetables taste like you eat them fresh from the garden, bland, and no life at all.

Since I still have plenty of jam made from Iba, I tossed a spoonful of it in olive oil and put some vinegar, and a dash of salt and pepper. I never thought I could make a vinaigrette that perfect. I still remember when I first tasted the blueberry vinaigrette of Kuppa in Bacolod. It almost tasted like this. The iba jam was a perfect dressing: it’s sour and sweet, enough to enliven the fresh green salad. (Get the Iba jam recipe here)

For the dressing: in a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoon of the iba jam, ¼ cup of vinegar (you can use whatever you have in your pantry, for this recipe, I used clear coconut nectar vinegar), 4 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, a dash of salt and pepper. Mix thoroughly.

Prepare the fresh vegetables: in a salad bowl, arrange the chilled romaine lettuce, a few chunks of chilled jicamas sliced in small blocks, few slices of seeded cucumber, few slices of avocado and tomatoes, and a generous amount of fresh mongo sprouts. Toss the vinaigrette to the salad and serve fresh.

Jogging and salad…now Im looking forward for my next market visit!

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