Broccoli Romanesco Salad

Broccoli Romaesco is so cool-looking. I always feel bad breaking it apart or cutting it. The other night I made it into a salad with a garlicy vinaigrette, marcona almonds, and Pecorino cheese. I usually make this salad with thinly shaved Brussels sprouts, but this worked well, too.

Romanesco Salad

1 clove garlic
2” dried cayenne with seeds
½ t. Dijon mustard
1 oz. Red wine vinegar
2 oz. Evoo


Combine the garlic and cayenne (or use chili flakes) in a morter and pestle and grind into a paste. Add the mustard and vinegar, then whisk the oil in.


Season well with salt and pepper, then refrigerate until needed. This vinaigrette keeps well for three or four days since the garlic is intended to be strong in the first place.


6 oz. Broccoli romanesco, broken into pieces
¾ oz. Marcona almonds, chopped
1.2 oz. Pecorino cheese, grated finely

Break the romanesco into little florettes, then char in a saute pan with a little EVOO. Season lightly, then chill.

Toss the chilled romanesco with the almonds and Pecorino, then drizzle the vinaigrette over to taste, and toss to combine.

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David Gingrass is a food and beverage operations professional with a career spanning more than three decades. His fascination with and love for food, wine and entertaining allows him to view his work as both a vocation and an avocation. Gingrass graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York then cooked in the Bay Area for two years before landing a job at Wolfgang Puck’s original Spago Restaurant in West Hollywood. There he learned to make the signature breads and sausages that he became known for at Postrio and Hawthorne Lane. He was soon promoted to kitchen manager and managed the operational and expense control aspects of Puck’s iconic restaurant for the next four years. Gingrass returned to San Francisco in 1989 when Puck tapped him and his then-wife Anne to open Postrio, Puck’s third restaurant and his first outside of Los Angeles. Postrio opened to rave reviews and soon became the #1 popular Bay Area restaurant in the prestigious Zagat survey. Five and a half years later, the opportunity to open a restaurant of his own presented itself. Hawthorne Lane opened in 1995 and was a San Francisco dining institution for over twelve years, catering to the likes of Julia Child, Jacques Pepin, Mayor Willie Brown, James Carville, President Clinton and First Lady Hilary Clinton. He closed Hawthorne Lane at the end of its fifteen-year lease in 2009 to build a consulting practice for the hospitality industry, sharing his wealth of culinary and operational experiences with new and existing restaurants, assisting them to become successful and profitable.