Short Cake, Original Farmers Market, LA

short cake baker + cafe - cubed salad

I love every permutation of this salad…

The flirtation started with eatHarmony’s 29 Dimensions of a (vegetable) Chopped Salad.

Then I tried La Scala‘s famous antipasto Chopped Salad and it turned into a sincere interest.

It started getting serious when I found myself ordering Nancy’s Chopped Salad every time we went to the Pizzeria.

And then I finally brought it home.

Short Cake

We hadn’t been to the Farmers Market, the “Original” at Third and Fairfax, for a few months. Not by any conscious choice, of course. We moved to a new house, and though it is still about the same distance from here as it was from there, something about it feels further away now that we’re on “this side” of town.

Out of both energy and ideas for a meal over the weekend, we went back to the Farmers Market, which is essentially a more sophisticated way of eating in a mall food court. Cheap. Lots of options. Everyone can get what they want.

Loteria Grill has great Mexican food and , but I’m starting to believe that the real reason we always end up there is the availability of beer at the next stand over. Once we discovered the Mee Goreng at Singapore’s Banana Leaf, we ate one or the other every other time. Somehow I wasn’t in the mood for either of our defaults. I wandered reluctantly toward the Korean place.

I don’t know how I ended up at burger bar Short Order‘s little sister, Short Cake since I don’t eat desserts, pastries or sweets. I guess I was just as naturally curious as anyone in the LA “food scene” (pardon my use of that term, I hate it almost as much as I hate “foodie”) would be about the expansion of the Silverton Empire.

I do, however, know how I ended up ordering and eating at Short Cake. I almost missed it on a menu full of croissants, muffins, pies and tarts, but it was there. Nancy’s Cubed Salad, a geometrically perfect permutation of the Chopped Salad at Pizzeria Mozza, was where a salad should be in Nancy’s world, at the end, after dessert.

The Cubed Salad might be my new favorite default, especially since I know how to make it at home.

But of course, woman cannot live on Chopped Salad alone, so I need some inspiration. What is your favorite salad?

Make at Home: Sarah’s Take on Nancy’s Cubed (Chopped) Salad

inspired by the Cubed Salad at Short Cake and based on the Chopped Salad recipe from Mozza

serves 4 to 8 depending on serving size

Ingredients and Directions

Vinaigrette

Whisk together:
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons dried oregano
juice from ½ lemon, or more to taste
2 medium cloves garlic, very finely minced (almost to a paste)
½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
1 ½ cups extra-virgin olive oil
(Keep extra vinaigrette covered in refrigerator for a few days.)

Salad

Toss together in a large bowl:
¼ cup Vinaigrette
½ small red onion, cut length-wise into paper-thin slivers
1 head iceberg lettuce, chopped
1 head radicchio, chopped
1 pint small cherry tomatoes cut into halves, or quarters if the tomatoes are large
1½ cups chickpeas, drained and rinsed
¼ pound Pecorino Romano cheese diced
¼ pound mortadella (or basically any other salumi), diced
¼ pound salami, diced
a few pepperoncini, chopped
a few large green olives, sliced

Short Cake

in the Original Farmers Market at Third & Fairfax
6333 West 3rd Street, #316
Los Angeles, CA 90036
323.761.7976
www.shortcakeLA.com

{late lunch with LeBen, Saturday June 3, 2012}

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  • Sarah Kenney

    This salad does look delicious.  I’ll eat just about any kind of salad.  Wait a minute…I don’t like pickled items in a salad.  No pickles.  Oh, and no fruit…I can’t get into the balsamic/strawberry craze.  I do love strong cheese like bleu and feta and goat cheese in ANY salad.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=510157676 Sarah J. Gim

      Sarah: i feel ya on the fruit and as much as i love fresh berries and their health benefits, it’s still tough for me to get into anything like, oh say, this: http://www.thedeliciouslife.com/nordstrom-caf-food-and-fashion-in-same/ (i did try a strawberry vinaigrette a few weeks ago though and it wasn’t horrible :) )

  • http://greenbasket.me/ Andi
  • http://www.facebook.com/man0fsteel Greg Park

    I found the Chopped Salad at Mozza to be a tad bitter (radicchio was probably the culprit to my tastebuds).  But I found her arugula, ‘shroom salad addictive. 

    But my go to salad at home is a gussied up version of Feast from the East’s Chinese Chicken Salad.  I always add cherry tomatoes and sometimes diced cucumbers.  Super easy, esp since you can even get their dressing at Costco

    http://www.ffte.com/ccs.html

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=510157676 Sarah J. Gim

      greg: the salad at the restaurant is also over-dressed (imho), which is why i love doing it at home…

      good call on the chinese chicken salad… i may actually try to make a good one at home. just had the one from CA Chicken Cafe last week and forgot how awful/awesome they are are :)

  • http://meatballsandmilkshakes.com/ Meatballs&Milkshakes

    Beautiful salad! I’ve visited that farmers market in LA on vacation, and it’s amazing!

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