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Chopped Salad With Quail Eggs and Crème Fraiche

Serves 410 quail eggs3 cups chopped radicchio (about 1 small radicchio)1 cup chopped green pepper (about 1 pepper)1 cup diced Emmenthaler cheese1½ cups halved cherry tomatoes1½ cups diced Persian or English cucumber (about 3 Persian cucumbers)½ cup small black olives, pitted1 tablespoon finely chopped habanero or jalapeno pepper¼ cup chopped chivesDressing½ cup crème fraiche2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)2 tablespoons olive oil1 teaspoon salt¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper {pinterest_rich_pins_images} Chopped Salad With Quail Eggs and Crème Fraiche {/pinterest_rich_pins_images}

Chopped Salad With Quail Eggs and Crème Fraiche

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    Chopped Salad With Quail Eggs and Creme Fraiche
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    Salad ingredients
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    Chopped Salad With Quail Eggs and Creme Fraiche

Text, photos and food cooked by Michal Martinek

May 3, 2018

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Chopped Salad With Quail Eggs and Crème Fraiche

Bring this festive salad to a gathering, baby shower, or picnic in the park. The ingredients are simple but chosen with intention; i.e., don’t mess with my creation, please, because it won’t be the same—I promise. 

Quail eggs taste the same as chicken eggs. They are tiny, cute, and perfectly bite-size, which is what you want in a chopped salad. They’re a bit more tedious to peel—nimble fingers and longer nails help—but definitely worth the effort. 

Emmenthaler is my favorite hard cheese. It’s made in Switzerland and France—from unpasteurized, partially skimmed cow’s milk—and has a straw-colored interior interlaced with hazelnut-size holes. Its deep, buttery, earthy flavor gives the salad substance and a nice bite. 

The other ingredients are bitter (radicchio, green peppers), sweet (tomatoes and cucumbers), brackish (olives), and spicy (habanero peppers, chives)—making the salad balanced but also pretty, thanks to the purple, red, green, orange, and black color palette.

The delicious, deluxe dressing is made with crème fraiche, a sweet-tangy thickened cream with a silky texture. Did you know you could make it yourself by mixing a cup of heavy cream with two tablespoons of buttermilk and letting it stand on the kitchen counter for a day or so until it thickens? 

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  1. Serves 4
  2. 10 quail eggs
  3. 3 cups chopped radicchio (about 1 small radicchio)
  4. 1 cup chopped green pepper (about 1 pepper)
  5. 1 cup diced Emmenthaler cheese
  6. 1½ cups halved cherry tomatoes
  7. 1½ cups diced Persian or English cucumber (about 3 Persian cucumbers)
  8. ½ cup small black olives, pitted
  9. 1 tablespoon finely chopped habanero or jalapeno pepper
  10. ¼ cup chopped chives
  11. Dressing
  12. ½ cup crème fraiche
  13. 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
  14. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  15. 1 teaspoon salt
  16. ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1

Place the quail eggs in a small pot and cover with water. Bring to boil over medium-high heat and cook for 3 minutes. Gently stir the eggs occasionally with chopsticks or fork to make sure the egg yolk stays in the middle. Turn the heat off and let stand for 3 more minutes. Drain the water, and place the eggs in an ice bath or cold water to cool.

2

Fill a small bowl with water. Crack each egg all over its surface and place in the bowl. Immersing the cracked eggs in water helps with peeling them. Peel the eggs and halve lengthwise with a knife.

3

Place the eggs, radicchio, green pepper, cheese, tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, habanero, and chives in a medium bowl.

4

Prepare the dressing by mixing the crème fraiche with the lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper until smooth.

5

Add the dressing to the salad ingredients, and toss until completely coated. The salad will keep refrigerated for up to 2 days.

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