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Smoked Ham and Walnut Salad

Yield 8
Inspired by a variety of French ingredients, Marcia Kiesel came up with this original--and delicious--ham salad. Pernod gives the vinaigrette an unexpected fennel flavor.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 2 tablespoons dried currants
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Pernod
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 6 cups packed frisée (about 6 ounces)
  • 1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound thickly sliced smoked ham, sliced 1/4 inch thick, then cut into matchsticks 1/3 inch thick

How to Make It

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Toast the walnuts on a pie plate for 7 minutes, or until lightly browned. Let cool and coarsely chop.

  2. In a small heatproof bowl, soak the currants in hot water until softened, about 10 minutes; drain.

  3. In a small bowl, whisk the cream with the mustard, Pernod, vinegar and garlic and season with salt and pepper.

  4. In a large bowl, combine the frisée with the onion and currants. Add 1/4 cup of the dressing and toss to coat. Transfer the salad to a platter. Put the ham in the same bowl, toss gently with the remaining dressing and arrange over the salad. Sprinkle the walnuts over the top and serve.

  5. Make Ahead: The recipe can be prepared through Step 3 a day ahead. The walnuts and currants can stand, covered, at room temperature. The dressing can be refrigerated.