Bitter Winter Salad
15 Min

Bitter Winter Salad

I just returned from a trip to India, where I ate many a wonderful meal. Prawn balchao in Goa, a Gujarati thali in Mumbai, an unctuous beef shank in Delhi and so on but the one thing I seldom encountered in a restaurant or even home was a simple crisp green salad. Lettuce has only arrived in the fancier urban grocery stores in India in the last 5 to 8 years so salads are not a part of the everyday diet of Indians. When I was growing up, a salad at the table constituted sliced cabbage with sliced tomatoes or radishes over it with a squeeze of lime juice.

The first thing I wanted to inhale upon my return was a big green salad. And in the winter particularly, I like to enjoy salads made with bitter greens like radicchio, or endive particularly when they are balanced with something sweet like maple syrup, oranges, or pomegranates. I add serrano to this salad because particularly during colder months, our bodies need foods that produce heat to maintain strong digestion.

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Cook Time

15 Minutes



Step 1
To make the dressing, over high heat in a small frying pan, warm the olive oil and pop the cumin seeds. Once the oil is hot, this should only take a few seconds. Next immediately, add the almond butter and turn the heat off.
Step 2
Whisk in the ginger, serrano, lemon juice, maple syrup, salt, and black pepper.
Step 3
To make the salad, in a large bowl, tear the radicchio into large 4-to-5-inch pieces and separate the endive into individual segments. Pour the salad dressing on top and toss until mixed.
Step 4
Transfer to individual serving plates or a large platter. Top the salad with pomegranate seeds, shards of cheese and fresh micro greens. Sprinkle sesame seed and serve immediately.

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

1 tablespoon almond or peanut butter

1 tablespoon minced ginger

1 small serrano minced (optional)

Juice from 2 lemons

2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey

Generous pinch salt and black pepper

1 medium head of radicchio

4 small heads of Belgian endive

1/2 cup pomegranate seeds

4 ounces of freshly sliced aged sharp cheese like Parmesan or Pecorino Romano

A small handful of herbs or micro greens

2 tablespoons sesame seeds

Notes & Variations

  • If you do not like bitter greens, use a lettuce of your choice and reduce the quantities of bitter greens.
  • Nut butter adds body to the salad dressing – if allergic to nuts, replace it with tahini or ground sesame seeds.
15 Min

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