Iconic New York restaurants make their way into Mad Men in nearly every episode. And Sardi's in the theater district, with its caricature-covered walls, is nothing if not iconic. This Hearts of Palm Salad from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook was enjoyed by Don Draper during a dinner at Sardi's that also included steak tartare and at least an Old Fashioned or two.
While we're pretty certain that there isn't a more dated vegetable out there than canned hearts of palm, there's something about this salad that feels quite contemporary. Peppery watercress, mild hearts of palm, and buttery Bibb are dressed with a confetti vinaigrette that is packed with capers, bits of pickle, and finely chopped egg white to make for a salad that's not only tasty but quite nice to look at as well.
Reprinted with permission from The Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook by Judy Gelman and Peter Zheutlin. Copyright © 2012. Published by Smart Pop Books. Available wherever books are sold. All rights reserved.
Hearts of Palm Salad
- 6 greenleaf lettuce leaves
- 6 whole pieces canned hearts of palm, drained (about 21 ounces)
- 6 thin slices pimiento
- 6 sprigs watercress
- 4 tablespoons Vinaigrette Dressing (see recipe below)
- Vinaigrette Dressing
- 1/2 dill pickle, finely chopped (about 2 tablespoons)
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped capers
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped pimiento
- 1 teaspoon finely chopped hard-boiled egg white
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
For the Vinaigrette Dressing: Place the finely chopped ingredients in a small bowl. Sprinkle with salt and add olive oil. Stir thoroughly while adding vinegar. Keep in refrigerator. Always stir before using.
For the salad: Place lettuce flat on dish. Arrange hearts of palm in a row. Arrange pimiento slices across lettuce and decorate at side with watercress. Serve with Vinaigrette Dressing.