Recipe excerpt from:
Delicious Gatherings: Recipes To Celebrate Together
by Tara “Teaspoon” Bench
Really, the resembelence to classic Waldorf salad is just the combo of apples, celery, and grapes — but I just love that one of my favorite salads heralded from New York City, where I live. I’m paying a little homage to its history! With shaved apple, flavorful radicchio, and a light, savory buttermilk dressing, this updated version of Waldorf salad is elegant and welcoming. I made a tangy buttermilk herb dressing and opted for delicious candied pecans instead of walnuts.
I absolutely loved Waldorf salad when I was little, and here’s why: instead of the classic mayo dressing, my mom covered the entire salad in sweetened whipped cream. I could eat the entire bowl, and who wouldn’t with that kind of dressing?
- 3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- ¾ cups (3 oz) pecans
- ½ cup buttermilk
- ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp chopped chives
- 1 Tbsp chopped parsley, plus for garnish
- 1 small head or half a large head of radicchio (10 oz)
- 1 apple, cored and cut in half
- 3 ribs celery, sliced on the bias
- 1 ½ cups red grapes, sliced in half
- For the pecans: Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside. In a small skillet over medium heat, bring maple syrup and cayenne to a boil. Boil 1 minute, and then add pecans. Stir to coat and cook another 30 seconds. Turn onto lined baking sheet and separate nuts. Set aside and let cool completely. When cool, coarsely chop.
- For the dressing: Whisk together all ingredients and set aside in the refrigerator.
- For the salad: Break or chop radicchio into pieces. Use a mandoline or slicer to thinly slice apple. Arrange radicchio, apple, celery, and grapes in a bowl, then top with chopped pecans. You can toss with the dressing and extra parsley at this point, or you can serve the salad with the dressing and parsley on the side so guests can dress their own salad.
Tara’s Tip: Radicchio is a very strong, sometimes bitter leafy vegetable. I think it’s fantastic with tangy buttermilk and yogurt. But if you want a milder salad, opt for butter lettuce leaves.