Juice of 1 lemon
Maldon or other flaky sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
PLACE the cucumber, chili and onion in a glass bowl. Toss with olive oil, agave nectar and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper.
REFRIGERATE from 1 hour to up to a day before serving.
Carrot and Citrus Salad
Serves 3 to 4. The recipe calls for grapefruits and pistachios, but oranges and raisins also make a delicious salad. Fresh limes are another good option when making barely dressed salads. If peppery watercress isn't available, try spinach. This recipe is from "Fresh, Happy, Tasty: An Adventure in 100 Recipes," by Jane Loxwell (William Morrow, $35).
1/3 cup shelled pistachios
2 grapefruits, segmented
1 large handful watercress
2 carrots, shaved on mandoline, placed in ice water
1 handful fresh cilantro leaves, picked and roughly torn or chopped
2 tablespoons grapefruit juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Small squeeze of agave nectar
Pinch Maldon or other flaky salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
TOAST pistachios in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat until evenly browned, 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and set aside.
COMBINE grapefruits, watercress, carrots and cilantro in a bowl and toss gently. Whisk the dressing ingredients in a small bowl. When ready to serve, add nuts and dressing to the salad.
Mixed Greens and Strawberry Salad
Serves 4. This recipe is from "The Artist, the Cook and the Gardener: Recipes Inspired by Painting and the Garden," by Maryjo Koch (Andrews McMeel, $26.99).
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed, and 1 tablespoon orange marmalade
1 small head butter lettuce, washed, chilled
3 to 4 ounces mixed baby lettuces, washed, chilled
2 cups strawberries, washed, hulled, sliced
1/4 cup slivered almonds
Sea salt, black pepper
WHISK together in a bowl mayonnaise and orange juice concentrate. Add the marmalade and whisk again until combined. Refrigerate.
RESERVE 4 large leaves for plating. Tear remaining leaves into bite-size pieces.
SPOON 1 tablespoon of dressing into the center of each of 4serving plates. Place a whole large leaf of butter lettuce off-center on the plate. Scatter a handful of torn lettuce and a handful of baby greens over the entire plate. Scatter 1/2 cup sliced strawberries and 1 tablespoon of sliced almonds over the greens.
DRIZZLE each salad with additional tablespoon dressing and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.