A long time ago, my friend J and I were doing a catering gig. He came up with the idea to build the salad in a ring mold to make it a little different. Anyway, good idea, but hard to do for 100+ plates with limited skilled hands. However, if you only have to do four for Easter dinner, it’s a snap!
I wanted to recreate a carrot cake in my salad for Easter. I know, call me crazy. Not too hard if you take individual components like raisins and pineapple which I used in their original form. I roasted some teeny tiny Peter Rabbit sized carrots with some honey and candied some walnuts in a pan with butter, brown sugar and apple pie spice.
I mixed up a dressing of orange juice, ginger, salt and pepper, apple cider vinegar, and creme fraiche to mimic the whole cream cheese frosting of a cake and then I started building. Bibb lettuce (it is a salad after all), then canned chunk pineapple, then the carrots, then ricotta salata cheese that I shaved with a vegetable peeler, then walnuts and raisins.
Then you kinda smush the ingredients down in the mold for a couple of seconds, to give the ingredients time to bond. The key is not to have to move the salad to a plate. Build it where you need it!
I pooled the dressing around the stack and am happy to report it was an all round success!
We had the wrap on culinary molds this holiday!