Monday, May 31, 2010

Simple Curried Rice

Simple Curried Rice

This is our basic curried rice recipe.  It's good for nights when you want a little more than just plain rice, but don't want to spend a lot of extra time.  It's mild enough to pair well with many other dishes, too.

1 teaspoon butter (or non-stick spray, if preferred)
1/4 cup diced onion
1 teaspoon ground curry powder
1 cup white rice
1 3/4 cup water
Dashes of paprika to garnish (optional)

Melt butter in medium sized sauce pan.
Saute diced onion until semi-translucent.
Add curry powder and mix with onion.
Add water to sauce pan.
Bring water to a boil.
Add the rice, and stir
Bring water back to a boil, then lower heat to a simmer.
Cover the sauce pan.
Simmer the rice for 15 minutes.

Pictured: Onions, and onions with curry added.

Green Lettuce and Radicchio Salad with Garbanzo Beans

Green Lettuce and Radicchio Salad with Garbanzo Beans

Whenever I add garbanzo beans to a green salad, it always reminds me of the night before my son was born.  I had spent most of that afternoon in the kitchen, making homemade spaghetti and meatballs, and a different version of this salad with garbanzo beans and garlic bread.

After cooking in the kitchen for a few hours, our guests (about six other people) arrived.  Just about the time I got everything on the table and everyone sat down to eat, my son started signaling me that he was not happy about missing out on the spread in front of us.  In truth, I had probably been in the early signs of labor for awhile before then, but had been too busy to notice. 

For years, I have suggested to other pregnant women who were late in delivery that they should make this dinner.  However, as I've gotten to know my son over the past 20 years, I've realized it had nothing to do with the food.  My son was just doing what he almost always does; preparing to arrive on time.  He was due (and was born) the next morning. 

My doctor said it rarely happens and  was quite surprised when he got called away from someone's wedding.  He arrived at the hospital in a full tux.  I, of course, kidded him and said, "Lee, you didn't have to dress up."  I always called him by his first name, which he thought was odd but usually made him chuckle anyway.

The ingredients for this salad:

1/2 head of green lettuce, hand torn into bite-sized pieces
6 leaves of radicchio, hand torn into bite-sized pieces
1/2 red bell pepper, diced into 1/4 inch pieces
5 green onions, sliced, using all of the white and a little of the green part
1 small can of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
8-9 grape tomatoes, left whole

Rinse and tear lettuces.  Spin in a salad spinner.
Put the lettuce in the fridge to chill while preparing the rest.

Dice up the bell peppers and slice the green onion.

Drain the garbanzo beans.

Toss the lettuce, bell pepper, green onion and garbanzo beans.

Add dressing of choice (or let diners add it themselves at the table).  [For this salad, we used Blue Cheese-Balsamic and Red Wine Vinegar]

Toss everything together.

Add the tomatoes around the rim.
 Here's a close-up as well. 

Note: I add the tomatoes in last and keep them separated from everything else for for two reasons. It allows those like me (who aren't fond of raw tomato) and those who are allergic (we have at least one in our extended family who is) to avoid it if they want to.

On the flip side, it also allows those huge tomato fans easy access to find them! :) 

Blue Cheese-Balsamic and Red Wine Vinegar Dressing

Blue Cheese-Balsamic and Red Wine Vinegar Dressing

This recipe is adapted from a recipe I've been making for over twenty years.

For some reason, last night, I felt like adapting it for the first time, by adding red wine vinegar and leaving out the herbs.

Since we were serving the salad in a very large portion size (serving it with just some chicken on the side), I was hoping for a slightly less zingy dressing that would compliment the salad without overpowering it.

It was a hit!  

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons crumbled blue cheese

Combine the vinegars and olive oil.
Mix the vinegars together.

[I like to add the blue cheese to the dressing then let it rest in the refrigerator while I make the salad.  If you prefer, you can wait and add the cheese directly to the individual salad(s), later.]

Add the crumbled blue cheese, then shake or stir, depending on what type of vessel you are making the dressing in.

If you let the dressing rest before serving it, remember to give it a good stir/shake -- just to make sure everything gets blended back together well.

This dressing will last a few days in the refrigerator if stored in a tightly sealed container.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Norma's Fruit Salad

Norma's Fruit Salad

This is a recipe I got from my Mom, who adapted it from her friend Norma's recipe.  I refer to it as Norma's Fruit Salad now when I make it, although I really don't know exactly how Norma makes hers.

Although there are no bananas in this version, my Mom and I usually put banana in ours at the time we serve it, but only in the portion we expect will be consumed during that meal.  That way, any leftovers will remain fresher, longer.

I imagine this salad is just one of those recipes that just gets adapted every time it is made, depending on what fruits are in season.

Today's version has two cups green seedless grapes, 1/4 cup blueberries from my bush out back, one diced up pineapple, 6 oz. pk. raspberries, 6 oz. pk. blackberries and 1 lb. strawberries (halved or quartered, depending on the size of the strawberry).

The fruit is then mixed with sugar, nutmeg and cinnamon.  My Mom isn't sure how much she uses of each, and I've always just added random amounts the couple of times I've made it previously.

This time, I decided to try to measure it.  I ended up using only half of the mixture I mixed up, however.

So, in the end, I used 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar, 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmug and 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon.  

Mix the spices together.

Then sprinkle over the fruit...

and toss the mixture together, gently, especially if any of the fruit is very ripe (such as my raspberries were today).

This fruit salad usually lasts 1 to 3 days if kept in the refrigerator in a tightly sealed container. 

Leftovers can be eaten as is, or spooned over yogurt or ice cream. 

My Mom said she likes hers added to her cereal, too.

The last time I made this, after the fruit was pretty soft and not looking so great - but still edible - I blended it up in the blender, added some red wine and fresh lemon and lime juice, poured it into a big, tall glass filled with ice and and called it "Instant Sangria."  :)   It was very good! 

Vietnamese Style Pickled Carrots

Vietnamese Style Pickled Carrots

When I saw these carrots on White on Rice Couple's blog, I immediately knew I'd make them soon.  I don't know if that's because I love carrots and vinegar so much, or if I just want to eat anything that reminds me of something that came from their garden.

Their victory garden is gorgeous!!

They have an adorable video of it on their site, too.

Although I haven't seen their garden in person, I have met Diane and Todd once, at one of their food blogging classes (which was a lot of fun) in March.  I am a new blogger, but I still learned a lot and was inspired by them, and others who were there.

Their Vietnamese Style Pickled Carrots recipe can be found here.  The recipe was inspired by Janet Fletcher's book Eating Local; The Cookbook Inspired by America's Farmers.  A link to the book can be found in the same article with their recipe.

Below are my pictures of ordinary carrots being transformed into Vietnamese styled ones :)  Plus a bonus picture of a bloom that caught my eye this morning (from a plant I didn't even know was in our common garden area.  A lovely surprise!)

 Tada!  Magic!


Hope your day is filled with magical happenings and beautiful surprises, too!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Focaccia Bread with Rosemary

Focaccia Bread with Rosemary

This Focaccia Bread with Rosemary recipe comes from Elise at

The rosemary in this bread is very noticeable.

In a very good way!

I used either a little too much oil on the top of the rectangular loaf, or it could have cooked a couple more minutes.  It didn't matter though.  The bread was still yummy, and we ate the whole loaf.

So far this week, it has been put to use in both our roasted chicken and turkey sandwiches.

Today, we'll be using the round loaf to make a pan bagnat with tuna, onions, pickles, spinach and vinegar. 
It is going to be soooo good, I can't wait to eat!

I also can't wait to try this recipe again, both as is, and using a variety of other herbs.

I'm sure I'll be trying it soon with fresh parsley, rosemary and thyme.  This is a combination used in one of my favorite quick batter bread recipes.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Bread and Butter Pickles

Bread and Butter Pickles

Memories are funny sometimes.

What you think you know, sometimes, you only think you know.

For years -- well, for at least a decade or more -- I thought my grandmother made bread and butter pickles.  But that isn't the case.

However, it did open a dialogue for a fun discussion we've been having about pickling stuff.

Also, after our discussion about the pickles, she found a recipe for me so I could make them.  It's a Bread and Butter Pickles recipe submitted by "CM" to  So, although this recipe is CM's recipe, to me, it will always be something I make that reminds me of my grandmother.

It's also something that will eventually be a part of another project that she inspired.

But more on that later, when it's complete.

Bread and Butter Pickles, in the making:

The cucumbers, washed, and looking like they are lying in the sun after a dip in the water.  The way water beads off them always reminds me of my youth, when we used to use layers of baby oil to "tan" cook ourselves in the sun at the beach. 

Sliced and ready.....

For their rest in the salt with the onions.

All prepared, and jarred.

After making these pickles, I joked with my Mom that my blog should be named "What Not to Do" because I almost always mess something up, forget something, or hurt myself during my happy times in the kitchen.

No exception here.

What not to do:  Do not try to carry a full-to-the-brim pot of boiling hot water from the stove to the sink to drain the pot and get your lovely pickle jars out of the pot.  Lest you do what I did -- spill some hot water on your foot.  It's amazing how fast you can get out of a shoe while holding a pan of hot water though!  I think mine was off in record time.

Do: Use a pot big enough to leave room above the jars -- so, if you decide to move the pot, you can do so without spilling water on yourself.  Or use tongs to remove the jars.  Just don't do what I did :)

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Pasta Primavera

Pasta Primavera

If you enjoy having a meal where you get a different flavor in each bite, this is one for you.  With the various vegetables and herbs used, each bite ends up tasting unique.  Tantalizing your taste buds until the end.

Just choose a bunch of vegetables and herbs you like, and you just can't go wrong with this dish.

For this recipe, the following was used:

  • 2 small Italian squash (zucchini)
  • 1 Yellow squash, chopped into 1 - 2 inch pieces
  • 1 Red bell pepper (capsicum), chopped into 1 - 2 inch pieces
  • 1 Orange bell pepper (capsicum), chopped into 1 - 2 inch pieces
  • 1 Yellow onion, chopped into 1 - 2 inch pieces
  • 2 large Jalepeno peppers, deveined & all seeds removed, then chopped into 1/4 inch pieces (optional)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon crushed fennel seed
  • 1 teaspoon fresh basil (chopped fine)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme (chopped fine)
  • 4 tablespoons Olive Oil, approximately
  • 1 pound farfelle (bow tie) pasta

Put a large pot of water on to boil, large enough to cook the pasta.

While cooking the vegetables, keep an eye on the pot.  Once the water begins to boil, add your pasta and cook as directed on the package (or about 8-9 minutes)

In a large skillet/saute pan, pour in 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Once the olive oil is hot, add the garlic and onions.

Saute 2-3 minutes.

Add the herbs, and give everything a quick stir.

Add the remaining vegetables and cook until fork tender, but not too soft (unless you prefer them that way).

If needed, add more olive oil while cooking the vegetables. If not, add the olive oil when they are done and stir in.

When the pasta is cooked, drain and add it to the vegetable mixture.

Mix everything until very well blended.  If the mix seems dry, add a bit more olive oil.

Serve immediately.

For this dinner, we paired our Pasta Primavera with barbeque chicken.

More herbs can certainly be used, and will be needed if you want to taste them in each bite.  You can also wait and add some of the herbs (or additional herbs) in later if you want to emphasize their flavors. 

I prefer to keep the amount of herbs to a low roar so that the flavors of the individual vegetables and the olive oil shine...

piling up different combinations on my fork with every bite!

So good!

This dish is great as leftovers, too.  It heats up well and it keeps in the fridge for several days.

One of my favorite things to do with the leftovers is to add a large ladle full into some eggs and scramble them.  It makes a quick and easy meal!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Sausage Stuffed Lotus Root

Sausage Stuffed Lotus Root

When I saw this item in Whole Foods, I had no idea what it was or what I would do with it.  But, I admit, sometimes I like to pretend I am on Chopped.  Grab some ingredient I have no clue about and see what I can do to it.

Unlike those brave contestants on the show, I cheated a bit on this one.  But not for the reasons you might think.  I wanted to know some of the more usual ways of preparing this, so I could come up with something different.

Well, I failed.

By the time I got home after work that day, my idea had been to stuff the holes of the lotus root with uncooked sausage meat, coat it with egg and panko and fry it.  But I didn't have a clue how the lotus root would work out with that idea.

One of the first links I checked out was Just Hungry's blog, specifically a post titled, "How to Cook Lotus Root (Renkon)".  It was really cool to see what these roots look like before being processed.  They also had a couple of recipes I wanted to try, like the "Stir-fried lotus root with sesame and green onions" which is on the page I linked to above.

Just Hungry linked to JugalBandi's Baked Lotus Root Chips, and off I went to look at the chips.  I got sidetracked because it sounded like something my husband would like. 

Unfortunately, my potato chip interest caused me to miss Just Hungry's note at the bottom of the page: "Sandwich some meaty filling inside and pan-fry (hasami-age)" and a link to Lotus Root Mini Cakes With Sweet Chili Sauce.  I could have stopped right there with my concocting plans because my plan is pretty much a combination of these two ideas. 

Oh well, not "new", but still fun...

Back to my not-so-original idea...

After checking out the lotus root, I realized it is pretty hard and I wasn't sure how long to cook it to make it soft enough to become how I envisioned it becoming.  So, I tried parboiling the lotus root.

This did not work.

Then, I boiled it for awhile and it never got the way I way I was hoping it would.

So I changed my plan.

I got out the lotus root.

Then stuffed it with already cooked sausage meat (left over bangers from breakfast).

Put on a skillet over medium heat, spritzed it with olive oil.  Not a lot.  I didn't want to taste the oil.

Then I coated the lotus root with egg and dredged it in panko.

And put it on to brown in the skillet.

While I was waiting for the sausage stuffed lotus root to brown, I prepared Pansalang Pinoy's Basic Asian Dipping Sauce

Then plated the root slices and sauce.

While the sauce was very good and I'd like to try it again another time, the sesame oil overpowered the flavor in this particular dish.  At least for us.

So I adapted the recipe and used a mixture of half soy sauce and half rice vinegar instead. 

At first, I wasn't sure how I liked it.

However, by the time I finished my second one, I was enjoying it.  Lotus Root has a really nice crunch!

That said, the next time I try Lotus Root, I think I will follow Just Hungry's Lotus Root Mini Cakes with Sweet Chili Sauce recipe. 

I'm looking forward to it.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Shortbread Dulce de Leche Tea Pot Cookies

Shortbread Dulce de Leche Tea Pot Cookies

A few months ago, I was reading FoodMayhem, one of my favorite blogs.

This particular post was for Jessica's Almond Meringues with Dulce de Leche.  At the time, I thought perhaps I could make these cookies for tea with my grandmother, and filed the idea in the back of my head.

Then, about six weeks ago, I ran across a darling cookie cutter in the shape of a tea pot.  I wasn't sure at the time whether I'd use it to make cookies for tea or cookies for my mom (she collects tea pots).

Cookies for tea was winning though.

My original idea was to make sugar cookies with Jessica's Dulce de Leche as a filling.

However, this morning, another idea hit me smack in the forehead!  So, I emailed my grandmother and asked her if she was available for tea this afternoon.  She said she'd love to, and I couldn't have been happier.

Finally, I get to try this Dulce de Leche Jessica talked about.  Yippee!


I did have one apprehension though, since this involved boiling a metal can full of milk for 90 minutes!!  I really wasn't sure if I believed that it wouldn't explode (lol!).  So, I did what anyone else would do, and stayed out of the kitchen except for the times I had to run in and check to be sure there was enough water to cover the can. :)  [here's a link to Jessica's post about how to make the Dulce de Leche.]


So - after my kitchen survived the boiling process - I got busy making the cookies I had decided on.

The recipe for the cookies was adapted from the Scotch Shortbread recipe in Betty Crocker's 40th Anniversary Edition Cook Book.  I love this cookbook and everything I've ever made from it.  It contains my absolute favorite Blueberry Muffin recipe, too.  I've made them a few dozen times!  It appears you can get the Scotch Shortbread recipe here, but you have to request it.

After the cookies were made, I "frosted" them with the Dulce de Leche, but they just didn't feel complete.

Then I dusted them with a very light layer of powdered sugar.

Hmmm...still not quite right!

Then I remembered I had some semi-sweet chocolate (the kind you cook with) in the cupboard.  I thought I'd put some cute chocolate curls on the cookies, but instead opted to just use a micro planer to put a little chocolate on them.

What do you think?

Pretty cute, huh!

I was so surprised.  Baking and I are hit-and-miss friends, but it seems we were on pretty good speaking terms today!  Yay! 

All that was left to do was pack up the tea cups and head to grandma's house for tea!  

My grandmother, my mom, my son, my sister and my niece all tried the cookies and said they were good. 

My heart was beaming with joy and doing a happy-dance at the same time!

Thank you, Jessica, for the inspiration.

And a special thank you to my grandmother for being my tea drinking buddy.  :)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

British Breakfast sans tomato

British Breakfast sans tomato

Back when we first got together, some 11+ years ago, one of the places we'd frequent was a British Pub named the Cock N' Bull in Santa Monica.  It was our local pub at the time.

Sometimes we'd go there for a pint and watch a rubgy, cricket or soccer match on T.V., or just hang out.

Sometimes we'd go for breakfast. 

We always order the same thing, two British Breakfasts ("hold the tomato, please"). 

So, when we were thinking of what to have for our anniversary last weekend, we decided to have a British Breakfast (for dinner).  It's a meal that he introduced me to, so it is high on my sentimental value list :) 

Luckily there are plenty of places around here who sell the right goods.  It took going to three of them before I found one that had the bacon in stock.  The Tudor House was the furthest away, but I didn't mind the travel.  I like going there because it reminds me of my grandmother.  Her and I have gone there for tea and brunch on occasion.  She's cool like that, as my nieces would say :)

There isn't much to explain about this breakfast, so long as you have the right stuff.  First of which is the beans.  Heinz Beans with tomato sauce!

Then, of course, the bangers.

And the bacon.

I didn't take a photo of the bacon out of the package, but I should have.  I always mistakenly call this ham, I guess because it reminds me more of ham than it does (American) bacon?

My husband prefers his dished up like so, with a couple of dashes of Worchestershire sauce.

But I like mine plated with most everything piled on top of each other.  That way, I get a little taste of everything in each bite!  

On a normal weekend, when I actually make breakfast, I tend to just have the toast, eggs and beans.  But just the toast and beans works just fine, too.  Or just the eggs and beans.  :) 

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Yellowtail Teriyaki

Yellowtail Teriyaki

It's cool how things happen sometimes.

Some people I know go fishing regularly off the coast of California.  Today, they were kind enough to share with me (a truly novice fish preparer) with some very fresh yellowtail to experiment on.  They both love to fish and often share their catch with others to enjoy. 

After hearing about the catch and the trip, I wanted to be sure I had some info on where to begin preparing this fish for dinner.

So I asked one of them for a recipe.  By complete chance, I was referred to one from a blogger I read regularly.  Hank Shaw of Hunter Angler Gardener Cook.  Only this recipe came from's Fish and Seafood Cooking section. And I didn't immediately make the connection. 

So, although I had "a" recipe in hand and had everything I needed, I decided I should still check Hank's site to see if he had a yellowtail recipe posted.  Maybe, just maybe, I'd find a recipe of his to try. 

Before I could find out if he did, I ended up clicking on a link for a different fish recipe, which took me to to a different recipe posted by Hank Shaw.  Then I thought to look at the recipe I had been given....

Yep, it was also written by Hank Shaw. 

I love when connections like that happen and the world suddenly seems - somehow - smaller.

I've been following Hank's blog for a while but I haven't yet tried to prepare any of his recipes.  Not because I didn't want to.  I just usually don't have the ingredients on hand, or I'm intimidated.  Or both. 

Intimidated or not, I figured the stars had aligned tonight to encourage me to give this recipe a try.

[Please see Hank's site, or the site, for the recipe and preparation directions.  I'll only be posting limited comments on what I was doing (and my pictures) here.]

Salted the fish.

Gathered most of the ingredients. (I used sesame seed oil, because that's what I had on hand)

Put the yellowfin on to cook.

Flipped the fish, and added the marinade.

Plated everything.
Time to eat! :)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Fava Bean-Sunchoke-Grains of Paradise Risotto

Fava Bean-Sunchoke-Grains of Paradise Risotto

If your fava beans are fresh in the pod, remove them from the pod and toss them in very warm water for a couple of minutes.  Drain and allow to cool before handling.  Also, a knife to pierce the side along the seam  comes in handy to help release the beans easier. 

While waiting for your fava beans to cool, use a peeler to remove the outer brown layer on the sunchokes.  Dice into 1/4 inch cubes.  Place the cubes into a bowl of water with some lemon juice to keep the sunchokes from discoloring.

Dice the onion and measure out the wine (or broth, if using)

Remove the fava beans from their shell, set aside.

Grind and measure the grains of paradise/black pepper, set aside.

Off to a side or back burner, put the chicken broth on to simmer in a medium sauce pan. 

On the front burner, put a second medium sauce pan over medium heat, and add some olive oil to the bottom.

When the oil is hot, add the chopped onion and sunchoke (drained, do not add the water they were resting in).

Saute the sunchokes and onion until the onion becomes clear but not browned.

Turn the heat down to simmer.

Toss in the risotto and fava beans and give everything a quick stir.

Add the wine (or broth) and stir. 

Allow to simmer for one minute, stirring constantly.

Add the grains of paradise (or fresh black pepper, if using) and give a quick stir.

Add 1/2 cup of broth to the risotto sauce pan.  Immediately stir.

Stir regularly until it is absorbed.

Add the remaining broth to the risotto in 1/4 cup increments, allowing each addition to be absorbed before adding the next. 

Continue adding broth until the risotto is tender to the bite. 

If you run out of broth before your risotto is soft, add additional broth or water until it is cooked to your desired tenderness.


1/2 cup diced sunchoke (Jerusalem artichoke)
1/4 cup diced onion
1 cup shelled fresh fava beans
1/2 cup white wine or chicken broth
1 teaspoon ground grains of paradise (or fresh ground black pepper)
1 cup risotto
4 cups chicken broth

This dish would benefit from some fresh parsley or other mild herb, but tastes fine on its own, too.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Pan Bagnat

Pan Bagnat

This recipe is adapted from Julia Child and Jacques Pepins' Pan Bagnat in their book, "Julia and Jacques Cooking at Home".  In their book, they suggest this sandwich be made on much taller loaves of bread and then pressed overnight under weight.  The ones we make in this manner always taste better, since the ingredients get a chance to meld.

However, sometimes you just want to eat, without all the waiting.  This was the case today, so we chose to make ours on shorter bread rolls.

The rolls were then coated generously with olive oil and red wine vinegar.  3 T olive oil, 2 T red wine vinegar. 

For the filling, we used some meat (genoa salami and roasted turkey breast) and cheese (Pecorino) and jarred artichoke hearts we got from an Italian place I love to shop at in Culver City: Sorrento's Italian Market.  They have been there for as long as I can remember and I could write an entire post about my fondness of them, but I won't right now :)

In addition to the above, we filled our sandwiches with sliced tomato (on his) and substituted goat cheese on mine (since I have a mild dairy allergy).  Topped with a couple of twists of fresh ground pepper.

In the past, we have used many different kinds of fillings for this sandwich.  All types of deli meats and different cheeses, black olives, roasted red peppers, pickles, onion slices, banana peppers, etc.

The sandwich is meant to be served room temperature.

The sandwich, as described in their book, travels very well.  As it is refrigerated overnight and wrapped (we wrap ours in both cellophane/plastic wrap and then aluminum foil (I don't remember if they suggest both, but we do both)), the sandwich stays cold for awhile.

We've waited anywhere from 4 - 6 hours to eat ours -- to only rave reviews.  We've never been disappointed yet.

Something about this sandwich is just very homey and comforting!

We like to prepare these sandwiches the night before and take them with us when plan to be out the next day but don't really want to have to eat out somewhere.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Watercress-Endive-Red Globe Grape Salad

Watercress-Endive-Red Globe Grape Salad

If you're looking for a salad on a non-sweet tooth day, this might be the one for you. 

It's a nice change of pace if you aren't used to eating your salads with just lemon juice for dressing.

The red globe grapes really help curb some of the sour/tart/bitter factor going on between the other ingredients. 

It's an interesting mix!

Preparation suggestion: Toss the salad ingredients and dressing without the grapes, then add the grapes on top. 

Salad Ingredients:
One head endive
One cup watercress (leaves only)
10 red globe grapes (halved and seeded)

Salad dressing:
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
Fresh ground black pepper (to taste)