Why It Works
- Fresh satsuma juice and a couple off-the-beaten-path pantry ingredients (pomegranate molasses and Calabrian chilies) give a boost to a simple vinaigrette.
- The bitterness of Trevisano is balanced with juicy, sweet-and-sour satsuma segments.
- Sharp and salty ricotta salata, bright fresh herbs, and crunchy pistachios round out the salad.
Winter is generally a bleak period for produce, but there are a couple of seasonal outliers that aren't root vegetables and are worth celebrating: citrus and Italian chicories. This salad balances the bitterness of Trevisano radicchio with sweet satsuma mandarins, ricotta salata, and a pile of fresh herbs. A couple of unconventional pantry items that are worth having on hand at all times brighten up a simple vinaigrette that really ties the room together.
- For the Vinaigrette:
- 2 tablespoons (30ml) satsuma mandarin juice from 1 mandarin (see note)
- 2 tablespoons (30ml) red wine vinegar
- 1 small shallot (30g), finely minced
- 1 tablespoon (15ml) pomegranate molasses
- 1 tablespoon (15g) chopped Calabrian chilies
- 1/4 cup (60ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- For the Salad:
- 1 head (about 10 ounces; 285g) Trevisano or radicchio, leaves separated, large ones torn into 3-inch pieces, small ones left whole
- Kosher salt
- 3 satsuma mandarins (about 10 ounces; 285g), peeled and separated into segments
- 1 cup (12g) fresh parsley leaves
- 1/3 cup (55g) toasted shelled pistachios
- 1/4 cup (3g) fresh tarragon leaves
- 2 ounces (55g) ricotta salata, shaved
For the Vinaigrette: In a small bowl, combine mandarin juice, vinegar, shallot, pomegranate molasses, and Calabrian chilies. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Season to taste with salt.
For the Salad: Place Trevisano in large mixing bowl. Drizzle half the vinaigrette into bowl, coating sides rather than pouring vinaigrette directly over the leaves. Using clean hands, toss salad to coat, adding more vinaigrette as needed until Trevisano is thoroughly coated but not dripping. Season to taste with salt. Transfer half the leaves to a large serving bowl.
Push remaining Trevisano leaves to the side of mixing bowl; then add satsuma segments and parsley leaves to the bowl. Using your hands, gently toss to lightly coat with residual vinaigrette in the bowl, adding more vinaigrette if needed. Scatter half the satsuma segments and parsley leaves over the Trevisano in the serving bowl, followed by half of the pistachios, tarragon, and ricotta salata.
Repeat this layering process with remaining salad components. Serve immediately.
If you can't find satsumas, substitute with another type of mandarin/clementine.
If you can't find Trevisano or conventional radicchio, red endive will work for this salad, as well.
Make-Ahead and Storage
Vinaigrette can be refrigerated for up to 3 days; bring to room temperature and whisk to recombine before using. The salad is best enjoyed immediately.