Ottolenghi’s Perfect Lettuce Salad
Ottolenghi’s Perfect Lettuce Salad has the best combination of flavors like all his recipes do, and this salad is great for a special dinner.
I’ve been a long-time fan of Yotam Ottolenghi, and I recently got his second book, Plenty: Vibrant Vegetable Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi (affiliate link). Within minutes of opening the book, I knew I wanted to make this salad. Ottolenghi’s Perfect Lettuce Salad combines several kind of lettuce, radicchio, radishes, tomatoes, green onions, and capers, and those flavors go perfectly with the lemony vinaigrette he uses in this extra-flavorful salad that’s great for a special occasion.
I didn’t have the “semi-dried” tomatoes the recipe asks for (which sound like Slow Roasted Tomatoes) so I used fresh cherry tomatoes cut in half, and I also increased the amount of capers and added a tiny dash of caper brine to the dressing. Those minor changes only made the salad a little more perfect for my taste, and this is a salad I’ll be making over and over. Admittedly, some of the ingredients are a little pricey, but even if you don’t want to splurge on things like butter lettuce or radicchio and decide to modify the recipe even more, please don’t skip the radishes or capers, which are two of the things that I love most about this salad.
Who is Ottolenghi?
Yotam Ottolenghi is a brilliantly creative London food personality who’s famous for his simple-but-profound flavor combinations. I wasn’t sure what to expect when I ordered Ottolenghi: The Cookbook (affiliate link) a few years ago, but I was captivated by his food and I’ve been buying his cookbooks and trying his recipes ever since.
What Ingredients do you need for this recipe?
- butter lettuce
- green or red leaf lettuce
- green onions
- cherry tomatoes
- Capers (affiliate link)
- garlic clove
- T fresh-squeezed lemon juice, I used my fresh-frozen lemon juice
- caper brine (from the jar)
- T olive oil
- Grapeseed Oil (affiliate link) (or more olive oil)
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
How to make this perfect lettuce salad:
(Scroll down for complete recipe with nutritional information.)
- Start with one small head of butter lettuce, torn apart, washed, and spun dry.
- Ottolenghi specified “curly lettuce” for the second type. I used green leaf, but next time I might choose red leaf.
- I thought the vibrant color and flavor of radicchio was a great addition to the salad.
- Use a generous amount of green onions, thinly sliced on the diagonal.
- I like radishes cut in half-moon shapes instead of the circles Ottolenghi used.
- I used a cup of cherry tomatoes, cut in half. If you want a lower-carb version of this salad you can definitely skip the tomatoes.
- Stir together crushed garlic, fresh lemon juice, and a dash of caper brine, then whisk in olive oil and Grapeseed Oil (affiliate link) to make the dressing.
- Toss together all the fresh vegetables. I was only making salad for two people, so I put half in a bowl and tossed with half the dressing, saving the rest for another meal.
- And top each serving of salad with a generous spoonful of Capers (affiliate link).
More Interesting Salads with Lettuce:
Mediterranean Salad with Hummus Dressing from Kalyn’s Kitchen
Fattoush Lebanese Salad from Kalyn’s Kitchen
Miner’s Lettuce Salad from WrightFood
Ridiculously Easy Grilled Romaine Salad from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen
Spring Lettuce Salad with Roasted Asparagus from Recipe Girl
- 1 small head butter lettuce, torn, washed, and spun dry
- 1/2 head green or red leaf lettuce, torn, washed, and spun dry
- 1 small head radicchio, core removed and thinly sliced
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced on an angle
- 1 bunch radishes, cleaned and cut into half-moon slices
- 1 cup (or more) cherry tomatoes, cut in half
- 2-3 T capers
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 1/2 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. caper brine
- 1 1/2 T olive oil
- 1 1/2 T grapeseed oil
- salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- Tear the lettuces, wash and spin dry or dry with paper towels.
- Slice the radicchio, green onions, and radishes, and cut tomatoes in half.
- Put all salad vegetables into a bowl big enough to toss the salad in.
- Measure out capers into a small bowl. (You can rinse the capers if desired, but I didn’t.)
- Stir together the crushed garlic, lemon juice, and caper brine, then whisk in the olive oil and grapeseed oil a little at a time until the dressing is well-emulsified.
- Add salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste.
- Toss the salad with the dressing so all ingredients are lightly coated with dressing.
- Divide among four individual salad bowls and top each serving with a generous spoonful of capers.
If you don’t need four servings of salad, I would prepare the lettuce, radicchio, green onions, and radishes, then cut only enough tomatoes for the amount you need. The undressed salad minus tomatoes should keep in the refrigerator for several days.
Recipe adapted very slightly from Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi. (affiliate link)
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 120Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 475mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 2g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by the Recipe Plug-In I am using. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee 100% accuracy, since many variables affect those calculations.
Low-Carb Diet Low-Glycemic Diet / South Beach Diet Suggestions:
Every ingredient in Ottolenghi’s Perfect Lettuce Salad is perfect for all phases of the original South Beach Diet or any type of low-carb eating plan and this amazing salad is also gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and Paleo!
Find More Recipes Like This One:
Use Salad Recipes to find more recipes like this one. Use the Diet Type Index to find more recipes suitable for a specific eating plan. You might also like to Follow Kalyn’s Kitchen on Pinterest to see all the good recipes I’m sharing there.
Historical Notes for this Recipe:
This recipe was first posted in 2011. It was last updated with more information in 2021.