Bonus: Watercress, Pistachio and Orange Blossom Salad

I know I already recently covered a recipe from Plenty, but consider this a bonus! I highly recommend this salad to all my friends with unruly herb gardens, as this recipe calls for a ton of fresh herbs.

I was so excited to find orange blossom water at Fiesta, the best grocery store for those hard to find ingredients. I also noticed they had gigantic jars of preserved lemons, which I really could have used in my Arabesque recipe from a few weeks ago!  Were we not planning to move in a few weeks, I would have bought a jar, but hauling them across the country seems silly when I’m sure there are plenty of places to find them in the Bay Area.

Know of any good uses for orange blossom water? Let me know!

The orange blossom water in the dressing is what really makes this salad. That, on top of the fragrant blend of herbs will really perk you up. For me, the smell takes me back to when I worked at an Indian hair removal salon in Soho.  After threading you, they’d apply orange blossom water to your face. I think it has some astringent properties, but I always enjoyed that the lovely smell would help you forget that you just had all the hair on your face ripped out by the follicle.  These days I think I’d rather just enjoy this salad from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty.

Watercress, Pistachio and Orange Blossom Salad

Dressing:

  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice (or more if you like it very sour)
  • 1 tsp orange-flower water
  • salt and black pepper

Salad:

  • 3 1/2 cups watercress, thick stalks removed
  • scant 1 cup basil leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup dill
  • 1/4 cup tarragon leaves
  • 1/3 shelled unsalted pistachios, lightly toasted and coarsely crushed

To make the dressing, in a little bowl whisk together all the dressing ingredients.

Place the watercress and herbs in a large mixing bowl and set aside until you are ready to serve the salad (you can leave them in the fridge in an airtight container for a few hours).

Just before serving, pour the dressing and the pistachios over the leaves, toss gently and serve immediately.

Serves 4

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