When we sat down with Farmshop's Jeffrey Cerciello recently, the chef talked about his time with Thomas Keller and in the kitchen of El Bulli. No, Cerciello does not secretly have a nitrogen canister or Anti-Griddle at his Brentwood Country Mart restaurant. (Check out Ink, where you can see the Anti-Griddle sitting on the back counter to the right of the open kitchen.) So when we asked Cerciello for a recipe, he sent us something that a normal person can make at home. For which we are grateful.
It's a lovely recipe for a simple cabbage, cucumber and fennel salad laced with poppy seeds. Farmshop serves it with their Sunday fried chicken — their own recipe, thank you, not Ad Hoc's, although we all know that is a very good one — but if you're not a chicken person, we highly recommend it with salmon. Turn the page.
Cabbage, cucumber & fennel salad
From: Farmshop chef Josh Drew, who serves this with Farmshop's fried chicken.
1 1/4 pound savoy cabbage, sliced very thin
1 medium sweet onion, sliced very thin
1 1/2 pounds fennel bulb, sliced very thin
1 cucumber, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/8″ thick crosswise
Kosher salt as needed
1 cup creme fraiche
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1/4 cup chopped dill
3 tablespoons poppy seeds
1. In 1 large bowl, cover the cabbage, onion and fennel with ice water. Let stand for 30 minutes. Drain and spin in a salad spinner. In a seperate bowl, generously salt the cucumbers and cover with ice water. Let stand 30 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
2. In a very large bowl, whisk the creme fraiche with the vinegar until medium peaks form. Add the dill and poppy seeds and season with salt and pepper. Fold in all of the vegetables and re-season. Serve immediately.