Spinach Salad, Rum Cake

DEAR SOS: I would love to know the secret of the wonderful spinach and chicken salad made with Gorgonzola and walnuts at Marmalade in Santa Monica.


DEAR M.N.: The balsamic dressing does the trick. You can apply the dressing to any combination of greens, meat and shellfish for a change of pace. Gorgonzola, similar to blue cheese, is available at most supermarkets.



4 boneless chicken breasts

1 sweet yellow pepper

1 sweet red pepper

1 green pepper

1 carrot

3 stalks celery

2 pounds spinach

1 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese

1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped coarse

Grill chicken over high heat. Let cool. Cut into bite-sized pieces. May be done up to 2 days in advance.

Cut yellow, red and green peppers into thin strips. Peel and cut carrot and celery into thin sticks. Cleaned and stem spinach.

Combine chicken, peppers, carrot and celery in large bowl. Add Balsamic Dressing. Toss. Add spinach. Toss. Sprinkle with cheese and walnuts.

BALSAMIC DRESSING 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar

2 shallots, roasted and chopped

2 cloves garlic, roasted, chopped

1 teaspoon dried crushed red chile

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon Italian seasonings

1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil

Salt, pepper

Combine vinegar, shallots, garlic, chile, oregano and Italian seasonings in bowl. Whisk until well blended. Add oil in steady stream, whisking rapidly until slightly thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Makes 6 servings.

Each serving contains:

816 calories; 366 mg sodium; 74 mg cholesterol; 73 grams fat; 16 grams carbohydrates; 29 grams protein; 2.36 grams fiber.


DEAR SOS: I would like a recipe for rum cake. I have had a recipe for years, but I moved and now I can't find it.


DEAR PAULA: I hope this is the recipe you are looking for.

ITALIAN RUM CAKE (Zuppa Inglese)

6 egg yolks

3 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons honey

1/4 cup cream Sherry or Marsala

1 (10-inch) sponge cake

1/3 cup rum

1/3 cup creme de cacao

1 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped

Chopped nuts

Combine egg yolks, 2 tablespoons sugar and honey in top of double boiler. Beat with rotary beater until frothy and well blended. Beat in Sherry. Cook over hot--not boiling--water, beating constantly until mixture starts to bubble. Immediately set double boiler top in pan of cold water to stop cooking. Continue beating until smooth and thick. Refrigerate custard until ready to use.

Cut cake into 3 layers. Place 1 layer on cake plate. In small bowl mix rum and creme de cacao. Spoon some over layer. Spread 1/3 of custard over layer, cover with another layer and repeat process twice, ending with custard over top layer. Chill several hours.

Just before serving, whip cream with remaining 1 tablespoon sugar until stiff. Spoon over torte. Sprinkle with nuts.

Makes 10 to 12 servings.

Each serving contains:

350 calories; 102 mg sodium; 325 mg cholesterol; 15 grams fat; 36 grams carbohydrates; 6 grams protein; 0 fiber.

Copyright © 2019, Los Angeles Times
EDITION: California | U.S. & World