Sunday, October 3, 2010

Arugula with Tomato Raisins

I know that I have talked before about how much I love arugula salad.  But you can only eat so many plain arugula salads, or arugula salads with a little ricotta salata before you start wanting to mix things up a little.  Last week I was reading Sam Sifton's review of Del Posto in the NY Times and I came across an arugula salad that was described as "a tangle of Italian arugula and dots of tomato raisins that are worth almost literally their weight in gold."  And I was like "wait a second!  I think that I have that recipe at home!"  So I went home and checked Molto Gusto  and there it was - a recipe for Arugula with Tomato Raisins.  So obviously I decided to make it for lunch today as a side for some Spaghetti con la Sarde (which incidentally also comes from Molto Gusto).  As you can see, it has been a very Mario Batali Molto Gusto kind of day.  
Anyway, as far as this salad goes - those tomato raisins were awesome.  I'm not sure if I would say that they were "worth almost literally their weight in gold," but they were wonderfully flavorful and a fun addition to a simple arugula salad.  Roasting the grape tomatoes makes them very sweet and a little crunchy.  Be careful not to overdress the arugula or the entire salad gets a little soggy and the lemon vinaigrette obscures the taste of the wonderful tomato raisins.  But if you like arugula salads, you have to try this the next time you have a few extra hours to make the tomatoes!

Recipe after the jump!

Arugula with Tomato Raisins
Molto Gusto: Easy Italian Cooking
By Mario Batali and Mark Ladner

1 lb. arugula, trimmed, washed and spun dry
about 1/4 cup Lemon Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
Maldon or other flaky sea salt and coarsely ground black pepper
Tomato Raisins (recipe follows)

Toss the arugula with just enough vinaigrette to coat in a large bowl.  Season with s&p.  
Transfer to a serving bowl or platter, garnish with the tomatoes, and serve.

Tomato Raisins
Adapted from Molto Gusto: Easy Italian Cooking
By Mario Batali and Mark Ladner

1 pint (about 2 cups) cherry or grape tomatoes
 1 tbsp evoo
 kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.  Line a heavy baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.

Toss the tomatoes with evoo and salt in a bowl.  Spread the tomatoes out on the baking sheet and bake, stirring and turning the tomatoes occasionally, until they are lightly browned in spots and shriveled, about 2 1/2 to 3 hours for grape tomatoes or 3 1/2 to 4 hours for cherry tomatoes. 

Lemon Vinaigrette
Molto Gusto: Easy Italian Cooking
By Mario Batali and Mark Ladner

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp lemon marmalade (or generous pinch lemon zest)
1/2 cup evoo

In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, marmalade or zest, and evoo.

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