Haru kiku – 春菊

I’ve seen these beautiful green leaves for a while now but never cooked any before. Cooking is quite a big word for something that is perfect just washed and chopped like lettuce etc… In fact the trigger for trying was a recipe I found in browsing one of my macrobiotic cookbook and I totally loved the recipe at first, not because of the haru kiku but because of the hijiki. Some time ago I bought a little bag of dried hijiki made locally in Isumi. I made a few things with them but I find myself very limited, or I didn’t try enough, so this recipe was saving me. And it is just the season for haru kiku, so of course I found some right away at the local farmers market and I was more than happy to try them!

The original recipe is simply hijiki, haru kiku, olive oil and balsamic vinegar (a little weird for a macrobiotic recipe though…). My recipe goes like this:

Haru kiku and hijiki salad (for 2 as a side dish)

– a handful of haru kiku

– 20g of dried hijiki

– 2 slices of whole wheat or so bread

– 2 tbs of olive oil for frying the bread

– 1 tbs of olive oil for the dressing

– 1 tsp of white vinegar (I used rakkasu)

First rehydrate the hijiki in a bit of water. In the mean time dice the bread and fry it in the olive oil. Wash the haru kiku and cut the leaves from the stalk with the fingers, keep the leaves, trash the stalks. Then brake or cut the leaves in three. Drain the hijiki, add them to the haru kiku in a bowl, add the olive oil and vinegar and stir well, finally add the croutons and stir again. Enjoy as a side dish!

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