Wedge salad with roasted shallot blue cheese dressing.

Don’t you love encountering an improved version of a recipe or dish you’ve enjoyed forever? Like, over the weekend, Rob and I had a remarkable deep-dish pizza—remarkable because the pizza crust had a golden hue and delightful crunch from a generous amount of cornmeal in the dough. Now, I’m inspired to try to create a cornmeal-flecked pizza dough recipe (and yes, of course, I’ll share it here).

Recently, I hacked a better-than-basic version of the classic wedge salad. It was partly out of necessity: The cherry tomatoes I purchased were hard as rocks, and about as flavorful. (Note to self: Yet another example of why it’s perilous to buy produce that’s not in season.) To improve the salad and keep from dumping these pebbly tomatoes right in the trash, I decided to oven-roast them. In the same vein, I roasted the small shallot that went into the blue cheese dressing. And I roasted a couple slices of prosciutto to add a little salty-porky crunch to my wedge salad.

The result of this little bit of improvisation was a new-and-improved wedge salad recipe that I plan to make again and again. The roasted tomatoes were a fine substitute for all but the most pristine summer tomatoes. Roasting the shallot added a smoky taste to the blue cheese dressing. And I think crispy prosciutto is better than bacon on a salad any day of the week.

What about you? Have you adapted a basic recipe and discovered a new favorite? Share your comments!

wedge salad recipe with roasted tomatoes, crispy prosciutto and roasted shallot blue cheese dressing

serves 2

1/2 head iceberg lettuce, cored and halved, ice cold
1 medium shallot, quartered
1 cup cherry or plum tomatoes, halved
olive oil
2 slices prosciutto
1/3 cup mayonnaise (can use reduced-fat)
1/3 cup sour cream or Greek yogurt (can use reduced-fat)
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
fresh chives, snipped
kosher salt and coarsely ground pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees; line a small rimmed baking sheet with foil. Place the tomatoes and shallot on the pan, drizzle with a small amount of olive oil and season with a generous pinch of kosher salt. Roast for 20-25 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and slightly charred. Set aside to cool (keep the tomatoes at room temperature; don't refrigerate before serving). On the same pan, bake the prosciutto slices until they're crispy, about 15–20 minutes. Set aside to cool, then crumble. Finely chop the shallot. In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, sour cream and lemon juice. Stir in the chopped shallot and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the blue cheese. To serve, place a wedge of iceberg on 2 serving plates. Scatter the tomatoes around the lettuce; drizzle everything with some of the dressing. Scatter the freshly snipped chives and crumbled crispy prosciutto over the salads; season liberally with freshly cracked pepper.

6 thoughts on “Wedge salad with roasted shallot blue cheese dressing.

  1. Compari tomatoes have proven to be flavorful throughout the year, try them if you can find them at your grocery.

    • Hi, Sherron — you’re right: campari tomatoes are usually pretty reliable. I also find the “Kumato” tomatoes (they’re almost brown-ish) to be decent.

  2. Bryn,
    I can live my life without out of season tomatoes–but you bet I’m going to try this when the farm share gives me tomatoes. I’m already growing the shallots in the back yard.

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