Sunday, March 04, 2007

Insalata capricciosa

The first thing I have to post is the recipe for a salad, for the XIV weekend cookbook challenge, the deadline for it being tomorrow!!
My salad recipe is taken from my beloved 'Cucina di tradizione del Piemonte n.2' , i.e. the second of my Piemontese comic-style cookbooks. The name of this salad is 'Insalata capricciosa', which literally means 'fickle salad'. My imagination is that this salad was made to please some lady who was never happy about any food, and this salad was the only thing that she liked :)

Insalata capricciosa
sedano rapa (celery root?) - half of the big root
peppers, pickles
ham - half pound
mayonnaise - 3 tbsp

The main ingredient of this salad is sedano rapa, which I think is celery root. I found a picture of it on the internet:
Isn't it called celery root in English? Anyway, given the fact that I couldn't find this specific ingredient at Raleigh's farmers' market, I decided to use daikon radish, which is in the same family (look on this website), and has a similar taste, just a bit stronger than the celery root.
Anyway, to make the salad, cut all the ingredients in small rectangles or sticks. The Piemontese recipe requires peppers and mushrooms, pickled under oil and vinegar, which don't really exist in Raleigh. So I opted for fresh peppers and pickled cucumbers made by Lucas's mom, which are good :)
Once you cut all the ingredients, mix the mayonnaise with them. Last time I made it, I used half mayo and half fat free plain yogurt, to make it lighter, and it was very good.
Serve on lettuce leaves (in my case, I opted for cabbage leaves).
It's really good and tasty. In this last version, I added a bit of finely cut parseley. This mayonnaisey salad is typical of Piemonte, and it's the sister of 'Insalata russa', which I already posted about here.


Lb said...

This salad sounds delicious, and I'm very impressed with your substitution for celery root (yes we do call it celery root here, and also celeriac). Celery root is so hard for me to find in the US, and when I do it's just too expensive. But I love the taste, so I'm happy to hear that daikon radish can substitute, since that is easy for me to find.

Thanks for the recipe.

chemcookit said...

thank you so much for your comment. Please do let me know if you try it, if you agree that the taste of Daikon radish reminds that of celery root.