Friday, May 31, 2013

The Wedge

Memorial Day passed this last week, and though it is not technically summer yet, it sure feels like it! Kids are off of school, the weather is heating up, and most importantly Mikey and I are getting a really nice tan. We love our summers in Venice because it is a time when we get to see people that we don’t get to see all the time. It seems that there is no lack of things to do and people coming through at all times, and in that case you need to be prepared with something that is not only super quick to make, but is light, crisp, and really refreshing.

A wedge salad has a very traditional way it can be made, but who says you need to stick to tradition! It is like getting that fabulous tan that will make you feel all new. This wedge that Michael and I created has a nod to tradition, but has some summer flavors that we love, such as fresh sweet corn and roasted cherry tomatoes. You can make the tomatoes and the dressing in advance (even the pancetta) and have them stored up to 4 days so you can have them on hand. Enjoy and stay prepared for the friends that drop in!

*Allow 2 hours for roasting the tomatoes. 

Ingredients: serves 2-4 depending on hunger

1 head iceberg lettuce
5 cherry tomatoes (the bigger the better)
2 ears yellow sweet corn
1 Tablespoon thyme
½ cup pancetta diced
½ cup gorgonzola
1 ½  cup half and half
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Pinch salt
Pinch white pepper

Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Slice your tomatoes in half and toss in olive oil and thyme. Lay on baking sheet seed side up, and place in oven for 2 hours.
Next we are going to render the pancetta, if it is not already diced do so. Place in sauté pan and cook for about 10 minutes on medium high heat until you reach the crispiness you want. Lay on a paper towel to absorb the remaining fat. Set aside.

The dressing is really simple, and we actually made two versions of it; one really thick and one thinner. Take all the ingredients, but set aside a ½ cup of the half and half. Blend all of the other ingredients until nice and smooth. Take about a ¼ of that mix and blend with the other ½ cup of half and half. Set both aside in the refrigerator until you are ready to use both.

For the corn, shuck it, and using a knife, run it down away from you cutting off the little kernels and set aside. Next cut the iceberg lettuce in half, and then into quarters depending on how many people you are planning on serving.
Once the tomatoes are down, take out and let cool.

To assemble the salad, lay down a wedge of lettuce, cover with the thinner salad dressing. Lay the tomatoes around the plate. Put a dollop of thick dressing, and now sprinkle with pancetta and corn.
Cut in to it!!

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