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Spinach Salad with Roast Beet, Smoked Oyster Mushrooms, and Pumpernickel Croutons
Chef Daryl Nash of Otom – Chicago, IL
Adapted by
November 2007

Yield: 6 Servings


    Garlic Confit Vinaigrette: Musroom Croutons by Chef Daryl Nash on
  • 15 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • White wine vinegar, to taste

    Roasted Golden Beet:
  • 1 large golden beet
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Salt, to taste

    Smoked Oyster Mushrooms:
  • 1 pound oyster mushrooms
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 piece applewood

    Pumpernickel Croutons:
  • 1 loaf pumpernickel bread
  • Salt, to taste
  • ¼ cup olive oil

    Fire Roasted Red Bell Pepper: 
  • 1 red bell pepper

    To Assemble and Serve:
  • Spinach leaves, washed and dried, as needed


For the Garlic Confit Vinaigrette:
In a small saucepan combine garlic and olive oil. Cook at a very low temperature until garlic is softened. Strain garlic from oil, reserving both, and cool. In a blender process garlic, mustard, salt and white wine vinegar. Puree until smooth then slowly incorporate reserved olive oil until emulsified and adjust seasoning.

For the Roasted Golden Beet:
Preheat oven to 350°F. On a roasting rack, roast whole, unpeeled beet in a convection for 20 to 30 minutes, or until tender. Peel immediately and let cool. Julienne entire beet, coat with olive oil and season to taste.

For the Smoked Oyster Mushrooms:
Trim and wash the mushrooms very quickly in cold water. Drain for at least one hour on a rack. In a mixing bowl toss the mushrooms with salt, oil and vinegar then return to roasting rack. Place the rack in a smoker at 250°F for 30 minutes using the applewood.

For the Pumpernickel Croutons:
Preheat convection oven to 350°F. Cut the bread into 1 inch cubes then toss with salt and oil in a mixing bowl. Place on a roasting rack and bake for 10 minutes, or until crunchy.

For the Fire Roasted Red Bell Pepper: 
Place bell pepper over an open flame and rotate occasionally until skin is evenly charred. Place in a stainless steel bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let cool to room temperature. With a damp towel gently rub off charred skins and remove core and all seeds. Dice to ¼ inch cubes and reserve.

To Assemble and Serve:
Assemble the croutons on the plate.  In a small saucepan, heat 2 Tablespoons of the dressing to a boil. In a mixing bowl, toss the hot dressing with 6 ounces spinach, 2 ounces mushrooms and 2 ounces peppers. Season and plate on top of croutons.


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