I had a weird obsession with iceberg lettuce during my teen years. I used to fill a big bowl with it, chop up whatever veggies were in the fridge, like celery, tomatoes, green onions and cucumber and then I would grate cheddar cheese overtop and add Italian dressing (yeah, it wasn’t the healthiest but it was good!). I think it was the crunchiness of it all that I loved most. Nowadays, my food palate is a little more refined and I always make my own salad dressing.
I tend to crave crunchy greens after travelling (and eating lots of beige food) so I decided to make this salad platter. I wanted something sharp and tangy to dress up my iceberg lettuce and found the perfect recipe from Bon Appetit. I only altered it slightly to reflect the ingredients I had on hand.
Recipe slightly adapted from Bon Appetit
1 cup walnuts
8 ounces blue cheese, crumbled, divided
½ cup sour cream
½ cup mayonnaise
5 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon hot sauce
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
1 head of iceberg lettuce, cut crosswise into four 1-inch-thick slices
2 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered
Toast walnuts in a saucepan set to medium heat, tossing until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Let cool; coarsely chop.
Place half of blue cheese in a large heatproof measuring cup and microwave on medium until melted, about 1 minute (this will make it easier to whisk). Add sour cream, mayonnaise, vinegar, lemon juice, and hot sauce to blue cheese and whisk until smooth; season dressing with salt and pepper. Cover and chill until cold, at least 30 minutes.
Place 1 slice of iceberg lettuce on each plate and spoon about ¼ cup dressing over each. Top with walnuts, celery, tomatoes, and remaining blue cheese. Store remaining dressing in the fridge for up to 3 days.