Super Mario Toadstool Salad with Green 1-UP Dressing

Difficulty2Today, my hopes and dreams have been shattered — literally. As you may know, fellow geeks and gamers, today was supposed to be Legend of Zelda Stained Sugar Glass. And it looked fantastic… until the right person (not me!) picked up the ‘glass’ the wrong way and shattered it. From personal experience, sugar glass shatters like real glass.

Accidents happen, I suppose. We’ll revisit the sugar class on 2/12 as I already have something special planned for next week… More on that later. But you should totally be excited.

Today we’ll instead pay homage to the grand Super Mario franchise with something delicious: Toadstool Salad with Green 1-UP Dressing. I mean, you could use ranch but that wouldn’t be nearly as tasty. This dressing is pure magic! It got even our resident greens-hater to clear her plate. Ready? Let’s go.

Gamers, grab your mats!

For the salad:

  • salad greens – I used an ‘artisan blend’ of four kinds of lettuce
  • 1 cucumber
  • 3 carrots – mine were rather skinny; if you have more average sized carrots, scale this down to two.
  • radishes, about 1 pound
  • fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

For the dressing:

  • 1 cup Miracle Whip dressing
  • 1 avocado
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic
  • 1 cup parsley
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 10-15 cranks from your pepper mill
IMAG0331
You wondered if I knew what a vegetable was, didn’t you? Well, I love them! And you’ll be seeing more of them as I can fit them in.

The most time consuming bit is going to be creating your ‘toadstool’ radishes, so let’s get started with them right away. Snip the green tops and roots off your radishes and give them a good rinse. Take a sharp knife and sink it partway into your radish; the blade should be 1/3 to halfway up the radish:

IMAG0334
About 1/4 – 1/2 way into the flesh should be about right.

Run your knife all the way around the radish. You shouldn’t split the radish in two, you just need a nice clean line around the radish. Turn the radish so the head-end is facing you and cut a square into that side, right into the first cut mark you made. Like this:

IMAG0335
Sometimes pictures work a little better than words.

You’ll end up with something like this:

IMAG0336
Enlarged for a better view.

Now, round off the edges of that square- a tiny diagonal cut across each corner will do nicely. This completes the ‘stem’.

IMAG0337
You see where I’m going with this, right? Right? =D

Working carefully, skim off just enough of the cap to make your toadstool spots. These don’t have to be perfect, but I tried to do one spot on top and one spot on each side for a total of five spots:

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It was at about this time that I learned our puppy likes radish scraps.

Good? Good. Carry on, then!

IMAG0339
So many cute little toadstools.

Time consuming but worth it, right? Moving on! Wash your cucumber and peel and wash your carrots. Slice your carrots into thin medallions and your cucumber into medallions, then quarters:

IMAG0340
Nomnomnom greenery.

Cut, wash, and separate your salad greens as needed. Lightly toss all of your salad veggies together, season with pepper to taste. Set this in the fridge while you make your dressing.

For your dressing, add to your blender (yes, required. sorry.) the Miracle Whip dressing, chopped parsley and cilantro, garlic (finely chopped), lemon juice, olive oil, avocado, and black pepper. Blend this into submission until your dressing is smooth and you only see small flecks of the parsley and cilantro.

IMAG0341
Pre-blending. FYI, put the shrubbery at the bottom with the olive oil. Blends better. Don’t ask what I had to do.

That’s it! Your dressing should fit neatly in a Mason jar, if that’s your fancy:

IMAG0345
I could eat this with just a spoon. It’s really that good!

You’re done! Serve immediately. Any leftover dressing (pfft, leftovers) should be kept covered in the refrigerator and consumed within 3 days. Between our resident greens-hater-guinea-pig-person and the puppy, I could have put the plate right back in the cabinet, it was so clean. Despite the small setback with the sugar glass, I’m really glad to get something light and refreshing in my system. Here’s the finished presentation:

IMAG0344
Tasty, tasty green things, yum yum yum! …I… I’m not singing… >_>

So, I mentioned that the Legend of Zelda post is going to be put back until 2/12. Why is this, you might ask? Why stop when you were so close? Well. The new season of The Walking Dead (9 p.m., AMC) will be premiering on Sunday, February 8th. I thought you might like a little something special for the occasion. I’m thinking something along the lines of bloody brain jello shots are in order, yes? Yes. Now you know what’s happening two weeks in advance! Woot!

Feel free to like Skill Up Skillet on Facebook or lend your following power on Twitter. I love hearing from all of you! We’ll be back next week with more geek and game inspired food for your viewing pleasure. And if you haven’t made any of the recipes you’ve seen yet…. well, maybe now’s the time. I know I’ve revisited the Lembas Bread already, our coworkers just can’t get enough!

Cheers,

Leisel

Up Next: The Walking Dead Brain Jello Shots

Later: Legend of Zelda Stained Sugar Glass

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