Watercress Salad with Papaya and Lemon Dressing
- 1 fresh lemon
- 1 papaya, peeled, sliced, and seeds removed and reserved
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 6 cups mixed fresh watercress and greens, soaked in salt water to remove grit, rinsed and dried in a salad spinner
- 2 English cucumbers, peeled, quartered lengthwise, seeds removed and sliced into 1/4-inch thick slices
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 papaya, peeled, shredded into strings and cut into bite-sized lengths
- To make the dressing:
Microwave the lemon in a small bowl to release essential oils, and set aside until cool enough to handle. Through the feed opening of a running blender add, one at a time, the papaya, papaya seeds, Dijon mustard, vinegar, salt, pepper, and juice from the microwaved lemon. (Note: If you squeeze the lemon with the sliced side against your palm, the seeds are likely to stay in the rind.) Then with the blender still running, add the olive oil in a slow thin stream. Please note that the edible papaya seeds lend a wonderful mustard-y taste to the dressing, but are coarse in texture. If you find the texture to be too coarse for you, strain the dressing before use.
Toss the greens, cucumber, tomatoes and papaya strings with enough of the dressing to coat, serving additional dressing on the side.
2008, Robert Irvine, All Rights Reserved