Orecchiette Salad with Grilled Broccoli and Grapes
serves 8 to 12
If you’ve never tasted grilled grapes, you need to try this pasta salad.
What you need:
1 ½ cups Tarragon and Aleppo White Sauce (recipe to follow)
1 cup Spicy Walnuts
2 large, tart apples, such as Granny Smith, peeled, cored and cut in thin wedges
Juice of ½ lemon
2 heads broccoli, quartered
¼ white onion
1 orange, cut in half
¼ cup plus 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons Kosher salt, plus more as needed
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups red seedless grapes
1 pound orecchiette
¼ cup tarragon leaves
¼ cup torn basil
Tarragon and Aleppo White Sauce
makes a generous 2 1/2 cups
1 1/2 cups Duke’s Mayonnaise
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons Aleppo pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons simple syrup
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
3 tablespoons finely chopped tarragon
3 tablespoons finely chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients except the tarragon and parsley, and whisk thoroughly. Use a rubber spatula to fold in the tarragon and parsley. Refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to use, up to 3 days.
What to do:
1. Prepare the Tarragon and Aleppo White Sauce and the Spicy Walnuts and set aside.
2. Get ready to grill: Prepare a grill for direct heat cooking, and preheat to 300 degrees F.
3. Prep Apple Wedges: Place the apple wedges in a bowl with enough cold water to cover and add the lemon juice. Set aside until ready to use.
4. Prep and Grill Vegetables: Lightly brush the broccoli quarters, onion, and the cut side of the orange halves with 1 teaspoon olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Grill the broccoli and onion, cut-side down, for 3 minutes. Flip and grill for an additional 3 minutes, then set aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, cut the broccoli into florets and julienne the onion.
5. Char Orange Halves: Place orange halves (cut-side down) on the hot grill, for 3 minutes. Rotate the orange 45 degrees, and char an additional 3 minutes, then set aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, section the orange halves and remove the peel.
6. Grill Grapes: In a small bowl, lightly toss the grapes with 1/4 cup olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Place the grapes in a grill basket on the grill and cook 3 to 4 minutes, or until they begin to blister. Set aside.
7. Cook Pasta: In a large stockpot, bring 4 to 6 quarts of water with the salt to a rapid boil over high heat. Add the orecchiette, stir gently, and return to a boil. Cook for 11 minutes, or until the pasta is not quite al dente. Drain, and rinse the pasta with cold water to halt the cooking process. Drain well again, and toss in a large bowl with remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil to prevent the pasta from sticking.
To Serve: Drain the apples and pat them dry. In a large bowl, combine the pasta, apples, broccoli, grapes, onion, orange segments, Spicy Walnuts, Tarragon and Aleppo White Sauce, tarragon leaves, and basil. Toss gently to combine. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.