Vermont-made Cabot cloth-bound cheddar cheese creates a good contrast for crisp, juicy apples in this salad. For the dressing, use a good wheat beer. Adapted from " American Flavor," by Andrew Carmellini (Ecco, 2011).
Endive, Apple and Farmhouse Cheddar Salad With Country Ham and Wheat Beer Dressing
6 generous servings
For the dressing:
1/3 cup wheat beer
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard
Freshly squeezed juice from 1 lemon (at least 2 tablespoons)
1/3 cup grapeseed or corn oil
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
For the salad
1 head (5 ounces) Belgian endive, leaves cut crosswise into large pieces
1 head (7 ounces) radicchio (outer leaves removed), cored, then cut into chunks
1/4 pound thinly sliced country ham or prosciutto
2 medium Gala apples (14 ounces total), cored, then cut into chunks or thin slices
1/4 pound sharp farmhouse cheddar, cut into thin slices
1/4 cup loosely packed flat-leaf parsley leaves (from 5 stems)
Freshly ground black pepper
For the dressing: Whisk together the beer, honey, mustard and lemon juice in a medium bowl. Add grapeseed or corn oil and olive oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly to form an emulsified dressing. Add the salt and pepper, whisking to incorporate.
For the salad: Pile the endive, radicchio, ham, apples, cheddar and parsley in a large bowl, reserving a slice or two of the ham for each serving. Toss to combine; taste and add salt and/or pepper as desired.
Divide the salad among plates. Drizzle dressing over each portion, then drape pieces of the reserved ham on top.