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Lettuce salad with apples and jalapeño vinaigrette (Ensalada de lechuga con manzana)

This modern salad uses everything Mexican in one bowl bringing all the familiar flavours to your palate with a bang.

I discovered Takis because of my daughter, she got them back from a friend in Middle School. For years it was my chore to load up on these snacks and give her a constant supply. They are Doritos on crack, so much spicier and delicious. They are available in any Mexican store and now in India. I had to use them instead of traditional tortillas.

The salad bangs with flavours, the crisp lettuce is loaded with salty cheese, and the spice is banging from the Takis, spicy peanuts and the dressing. This is a super addictive salad, one that I love.

This is a wonderful book from the famed restaurant in San Francisco. I love the recipes and flavours in this book. The chef has compiled a wonderful selection of recipes, both traditional and contemporary to make your palate happy and get rid of those cravings for great Mexican food. This is a book I love to cook from.

For more recipes from this cookbook click here.


1 small red onion, thinly sliced

1 cup water

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons lime juice

2-3 jalapeño chillies

2 tablespoons lime juice

3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Salt, to taste

1 head lettuce, Little Gem or other

1 bag tortilla strips, plain tortilla chips or spicy Takis

1 Granny Smith apple or any tart apple variety, diced into small pieces

6 small red or 1 long red radish, peeled, halved and cut into thin shavings

1 avocado, cubed

1/2 cup spiced peanuts, store-bought is fine

Crumbled ricotta Salata cheese or feta cheese

Heat the water in a small pot and when boiling add the onions, turn off the flame and cover for 5 minutes.

Drain the onions completely using a colander. Add them to a bowl and drizzle with the lime juice and salt. Cover and set aside, the onions will turn a beautiful pink in a few minutes. Set aside till ready to assemble the salad.

Meanwhile, roast the jalapeños on an open flame using tongs or broil in the oven till charred and soft. Set aside to cool. Add to a small blender with the lime juice, vinegar, olive oil and salt. Blitz till you have a smooth dressing. Taste to check for spiciness and salt.

Assemble the salad by adding the washed lettuce to a wide bowl. Sprinkle with the radish. Cut the apples and avocados just before serving so that they do not turn brown. Top the salad with them. Crumble the cheese on top followed by the pickled onions, Takis and spiced peanuts. Drizzle the dressing last. Toss at the table.

Note: This salad does not keep well, the leaves turn soggy and it looks unappetizing. Finish the salad once assembled.

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