Organic Arugula Salad with Tempura California Avocado

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Serves: 12
  As needed  Vegetable oil, for frying
  Fresh California Avocados*, peeled, pitted and quartered
  As needed  kosher salt
24  cups  lightly packed arugula
  grapefruit, peeled, segmented and seeded
1 1/2  cups  chopped, toasted almonds
  Roasted Garlic Citrus Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
  Whipped Goat Cheese (recipe follows)
  Herb Salad (recipe follows)
  Tempura Batter (recipe follows)
    Roasted Garlic Citrus Vinaigrette (Yield: 4 cups)
1 1/4  cups  peeled garlic cloves
cup  canola oil
cup  extra-virgin olive oil
1/2  cup  lemon juice
  orange, zested and juiced
1/2  Tbsp.  lemon zest
1/2  cup  lime juice
1/4  cup  sherry vinegar
Tbsp.  honey
Tbsp.  Dijon mustard
Tbsp.  chopped fines herbes
  As needed  salt and ground black pepper
    Whipped Goat Cheese (Yield: 4 cups)
1 1/2  lb.  goat cheese, at room temperature
3/4  cup  crème fraîche
1/4  cup  Heavy Cream
  As needed  salt and ground black pepper
    Herb Salad (Yield: 1 cup)
1/4  cup  flat-leaf Italian parsley leaves
1/4  cup  fresh dill fronds
1/4  cup  fresh tarragon leaves
1/4  cup  fresh chive batons
    Tempura Batter (Yield: 1 1/2 cups)
1/2  cup  all-purpose flour
Tbsp.  cornstarch
Tbsp.  baking soda
Tbsp.  salt
oz.  soda water

As with all fruits and vegetables, wash avocados before cutting. Check out our tips for how to choose and use California Avocados


Roasted Garlic Citrus Vinaigrette:

  1. Place the garlic in a small pot with 1/2 cup canola oil and 1/2 cup olive oil and bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Lower heat to low and cook until garlic is soft and golden brown, about 1 hour. Strain garlic and reserve oil. Cool oil in refrigerator.
  2. In a blender, combine the cooked garlic cloves, lemon juice, orange zest and juice, lime juice, sherry vinegar, honey and Dijon mustard. Blend on medium-high until smooth. With the blender running, slowly add 1/2 cup of the reserved garlic oil, the remaining 1/2 cup canola oil and the remaining 1/2 cup olive oil until emulsified. Stir in the fines herbes and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Whipped Goat Cheese:

  1. Place the goat cheese, crème fraîche and heavy cream in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes, stopping to scrape down the bowl as needed. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to assemble salads, up to 24 hours in advance.

Herb Salad:

  1. In a bowl, combine the parsley, dill, tarragon and chives. Reserve for plating.

Tempura Batter:

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch, baking soda, salt and soda water until smooth.


  1. In a heavy pot, add oil to a depth of 2 inches and heat to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with 2 layers of paper towels.
  2. Working in batches, dip the avocado quarters in the tempura batter and fry until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet to drain. Sprinkle the tops with salt.
  3. Spread 1/4 cup whipped goat cheese on the bottom of each of 12 serving plates.
  4. In a large bowl, toss half of the arugula with half of the grapefruit, half of the almonds, and just enough dressing to coat. Season with salt to taste. Mound the salad onto 6 of the plates. Top each salad with a piece of avocado and garnish with herb salad. Repeat with remaining salad, dressing, avocado and herb salad. Serve immediately.
  5. Large avocados are recommended for this recipe. A large avocado averages 8 ounces. If using smaller or larger avocados, adjust the quantity accordingly.

Chef Matt Gordon, Urban Solace and Solace & the Moonlight Lounge, San Diego, CA

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