February 23, 2011

Signs of the Times

Yesterday and Today
Himself: Got license. Being used for disaster control. Which is ok.

Herself: Learning to be flexible instead of sticking to my routines..

We beat feet to the other side of the point yesterday, and tried a new restaurant, “Tender Greens.” We liked it. Great big, messy flavors but no finesse.

Once long ago as I started into my adult years, I ate a Cobb Salad at the original Brown Derby in Hollywood. I’d never eaten one before. Mother poo poo’d me for wanting to eat there, and she poo poo’ed my choice of a salad for lunch. My seams might have been straight, but she was wrong about the food.

Brown Derby Cobb Salad: from Group Recipes.com:

Salad: Mince:
• 1/2 head iceberg lettuce
• 1/2 bunch watercress
• 1 small bunch curly endive
• 1/2 head romaine
• 2 Tbsp. minced chives
• 1 chicken breast cooked, diced into small cubes
• 6 strips bacon, cooked and diced (Thick good stuff!)
• 1 avocado, peeled and diced
• 2 medium peeled tomatoes , chopped and seeded
• 3 hard cooked eggs, peeled and diced
• 1/2 C. Roquefort cheese, crumbled
• Brown Derby Dressing:
• 1/4 cup water
• 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
• 1/4 teaspoon sugar
• 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
• 2 teaspoons salt
• 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• 3/4 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
• 1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
• 1 small clove garlic, finely minced
• 1/4 cup full-flavored olive oil
• 3/4 cup salad oil
• A note from the Brown Derby: "The water is optional, depending upon the degree of oiliness desired in the dressing."
• Blend all ingredients together, except oils. Add olive and salad oils. Mix well.

The dressing had already been tossed with the greens that day. There the salad sat in front of me in all its rows of minced glory. I’d never seen anything minced before. Mother whacked at foods and aimed them at the table. This was a carefully crafted work of art that amazed me that day and still amazes me in memory.

Yesterday’s salad tasted right, but it was no minced beauty instead reflecting the times. Lettuce leaves were giant chunks, the blue cheese was more than generous in its clumps, and the chicken, bacon, and avocado hunks were bite sized pieces unto themselves. I was pleased to note that there were not only several vegetarian choices, but a Vegan choice on the menu too. Note, I am not mentioning the crème fraiche tart.

Mother would have felt right at home.


  1. I've always wanted to try one of those salads. Looks yummy!

  2. I, who really don't like milk, will accept creme fraiche anytime.

  3. That sounds delicious but there sure are a lot of ingredients. I haven't had a Cobb salad in such a long long time.

  4. I love a good Cobb salad and wish I could find one here. Thanks for the recipe!!!!

  5. I think I ate at the Brown Derby the first time I went to LA. I was 19, and it was not the most memorable part of the trip. Probably had a burger.

  6. Strawberry cake! I am all for it. Where do you get strawberries at this time of year? We are still covered in snow and ice... And, avocados for your salad. Yum.

  7. I would enjoy that as long as I didn't have to prepare it. In contrast our French son last night made a starter of thinly sliced cucumber doused in a dressing made of extra virgin olive oil, seeded mustard and balsamic vinegar.
    Refreshing and delicious:)

  8. Oh the wonders of internet! I just checked out Tender Greens restaurant in Point Loma and had a look at the menu. They even have a vegetarian entry Hubby might like along with a luscious salad. My kind of place, too! Yum.


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