The inspiration came from my stomach: after making a BLT for dinner (an awesome BLT, inspired by Nancy Silverton’s sandwich book, with avocado instead of tomato and tarragon in the mayonnaise) i was still hungry. I opened my fridge and saw fresh cut pineapple I’d bought earlier in the day. So I removed that, I removed the tarragon, I dug in and found a big leftover chunk of ricotta salata, half a Vidalia onion, and–most notably–the jar of June Taylor’s Meyer Lemon & Rosemary Marmalade which I purchased at the San Francisco Ferry Building:
I sliced the pineapple uniformly, I diced the onion into a small dice, and shredded the tarragon. Then I tossed them all on a plate with some olive oil, salt and pepper, crumbled over the ricotta salata and–in a move inspired by David Chang’s use of lychee gele in the glorious apple salad I had at Ssam bar–spooned the Meyer Lemon marmalade on top.
The result was surprising and exciting. The tartness of the lemon balanced the sweetness of the pineapple, offset by the creaminess of the cheese and the herbiness of the tarragon. I felt like a 3-star chef primed for my very own James Beard award. I applauded myself voraciously, devoured the salad, cleaned up the mess, watched “The View” on Tivo and went to bed. It was a magical night.