Being in Southern California Mexican food has naturally become one of the main food groups. There is small Mexican joint called La Serena located right down the street from us. They have a unique and healthy spin on the cuisine, using organic ingredients and wild fish which fortunately reduces my guilt seeing we can be found there multiple times a week.
As much as I love trying new flavors I can often become a creature of habit when eating out. It’s a bit of an inside joke between our family. I will peruse the menu oohing and aahing at this and that, as if I’m torn about what to order. But more often than not I end up ordering the same ole thing, the item on the menu that has been stamped with my approval. Why mess with a good thing?! Or even worst, chance the idea of ordering something that might not live up to your expectations? Just kidding. Well kinda but not really?!
Though we eat at La Serena biweekly I always end up ordering the blackened salmon salad. The actual ingredients in the La Serena salad are a bit expected and nothing out of the ordinary–organic greens, avocado, red onion tomato, etc–which works well seeing the dressing steals the show, it’s truly the star ingredient along side fresh, local, flavorful organic produce that makes the salad pop. It is cilantro based with some shallot-like spice and finished with punch of jalapeño and is what makes the salad one of the most popular items on their menu. I’ve begged them to share the recipe with me and their response is always a bit vague, a little bit of this, a little bit of that. I started experimenting a bit on my own at the house but nothing came close to competing with the real deal until I found this recipe by Pinch of Yum on Pinterest.
This jalapeño cilantro salad dressing is perfectly tangy, spicy and can’t-quite-put-your-finger-on-it licking good. Try adding some grilled salmon or swordfish for a complete meal. Oh and the best part is this recipe makes enough for seconds, so stow some of the dressing in a little jar for another day this week. Enjoy friends!
RECIPE FOR THE SPICY SUMMER SALAD
INGREDIENTS FOR DRESSING
1/2 jalapeño pepper (ribs seeds and all)
2/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lime (juiced)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tbsp honey
2 garlic cloves (minced)
1 cup cilantro
Toss everything into a Vitamixer or food processor and blend until creamy. Seeing jalapeño’s can be a bit unpredictable it’s best to do a taste test prior to serving.
INGREDIENTS FOR SALAD
Recipe adapted from Pinch of Yum