© 2011 Green Kitchen Stories Summer_salad

Our Summer In a Salad

Since we spent so many months traveling, this past winter, we agreed to stay in Sweden and Denmark this summer. It turned out to be a great decision. We can find one hundred annoying things to say about Sweden during the dark winter, but during the summer this country is pretty nice. Here are a few snapshots of some good moments.

We have been visiting our friends summer houses and eating late dinners outside. When it comes to food we have repeatedly been eating the same things this summer: salads and grilled vegetables (oh, and this falafel). And sometimes, when we felt like we needed some variation, we made salads with grilled vegetables.

Elsa’s favorite position has always been on the kitchen counter, keeping us company as we prepare the food. Give her a few months and she will probably do the chopping herself …

Here is one of the salads that we made this summer. Can you spot the marinated eggplant? Normally it takes half a day to properly marinate it, but we came up with a summer version that only takes a few minutes, and it’s great in salads. Here is how it is done: Put thin slices of eggplant on the grill until slightly burnt, soak them in olive oil, a dash of white wine vinegar, garlic, salt and fresh herbs for 10 minutes, done!

When one of David’s best friends turned 30, he arranged a 3-day festival with live music performances, great food and a snaps bar in the middle of the forest. That is how you celebrate a birthday!

Beetroot, Zucchini & Apple Salad
Serves 6 persons

This is a very light salad, suitable for hot summer days. The zucchini is grilled, but everything else is raw – even the beets – which gives it a very fresh taste and crunchy texture. Top it with macadamia nuts, Queso Manchego and herb dressing.

1 medium size zucchini
100 g macadamia nuts
3 apples
3 Chioggia beets
3 beetroots
100 g rucola
50 g Manchego cheese 

Herb & Mustard Dressing
1/2 cup olive oil 
4 tbsp white vine vinegar
1/3 cup fresh herbs
1 tbsp dijon mustard
1 clove garlic
salt & pepper to taste

Preparing the vegetables: Wash the zucchini and cut it in ½ -inch slices. Grill them for about 1 minute on each side and set aside. Roast the macadamia nuts in pan on medium heat for a couple of minutes. Wash the apples and peel and rinse the Chioggia beets and beetroots. Slice them all as thin as you can.

Preparing The Herb & Mustard Dressing: Put all ingredients in a mixer or blender and mix until you get a smooth sauce. Taste.

Assembling the layers: Place a slice of apple, a slice of beetroot, a slice of grilled zucchini, a slice of Chioggia beet and some rucola leafs on top of each other. Repeat three more times. Drizzle the Herb & Mustard Dressing, shave some slices of Manchego cheese and top with a couple of roasted macadamia nuts.

If the grill is still warm after the dinner, you can use the heat to make a quick dessert. Put some fresh strawberries on the grill and let them stay until soft. Serve on a plate, topped with a dollop of yogurt with fresh vanilla and cardamom.

Photos by David & Johanna Frenkel


  1. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 01:38 | #

    That is one phenomenal salad!

    I just need directions to Sweden…..

  2. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 01:49 | #

    Drools! Can that salad be any more prettier? If a salad can look that gorgeous I can’t even imagine how delicious it must’ve been.

  3. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 02:16 | #

    This was like flipping through a lovely summer photo album. It all looks so beautiful, delicious, and a that dollop of cuteness (Elsa) as the icing on top.

  4. Eve
    Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 08:15 | #

    I love the look of that salad. Love the thin crunchy beet slices and the fact that you use Queso Manchego, my favourite cheese!
    You guys rock.

  5. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 08:53 | #

    That picture of Elsa in the bathtub is the cutest ever!

  6. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 09:56 | #

    Looks so so delicious! And grilled strawberries sound pretty good too :)

  7. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 10:04 | #

    Beautiful. Must try!

  8. Sini
    Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 10:10 | #

    There is probably nothing better than Scandinavian summer.

    I’ve been enjoying marinated eggplants this summer too. The marinated eggplants à la Ottolenghi which were featured at delicious:days are a real treat.

  9. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 10:20 | #

    I have a feeling that I will be thinking about grilled strawberries with cardamom all day!

  10. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 11:01 | #

    Wow, Sweden is such a beautiful country! I’m actually going to live there in about a year or so, my boyfriend has good job opportunities around Linköping. And that salad, I mean… wow. I’m going to dream about Scandinavian summers until I get to enjoy them myself.
    (BTW, what kind of camera are you using? Your pictures are just amazing.)

  11. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 12:05 | #

    Aahhh… the flavors of Swedish summer… Amazing colors and beautiful photos as usual! I wonder if Vera would enjoy sitting on the counter as well… otherwise she very much into playing with running water by the sink while I prepare food. :)

  12. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 13:22 | #

    The salad looks lovely and your pictures are beautiful!
    I love summer :)

  13. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 14:57 | #

    Such yummie tips! Loveley to get a little peek at what you´ve been up to:) Vackraste familjen ever!

  14. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 16:16 | #

    Gorgeous! I especially love the flowers in the salad pictured above.

  15. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 16:52 | #


  16. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 19:39 | #

    I really like the recipe, it seems delicious.
    And I have to add, I’m admiring the photos!

  17. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 20:20 | #

    What a beautiful post. The scenery, food, family – made me smile to see you enjoying summer in such a lovely place, plus brought back beautiful memories of my own. Thank you so much for sharing.

  18. Val
    Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 21:25 | #

    The photos are lovely and the food just looks so colorful and tasty. Is rucola the same as arugula? Also I am not very familiar with Chioggia beets, so I’ll have to try this out soon. And I also love the thought of marinating eggplant in just a few minutes. It is my favorite vegetable and I am always looking for new ways to prepare it. Thank you for sharing!!!

  19. Posted 11 Aug ’11 at 21:58 | #

    I live in la Mancha (Spain) where manchego cheese is, then I have to cook your recipe ¡it´s sure!

  20. Posted 12 Aug ’11 at 06:14 | #

    These photos are so beautiful, I think I need to move to Sweden! I can’t wait to try your salad recipe, and the marinated eggplant will definitely be making its way into my kitchen soon :)

  21. Posted 12 Aug ’11 at 13:10 | #

    Your posts are always so delicious and inspiring. I do a little dance when a new one comes through. I haven’t made the falafels yet but they are on my list!

  22. Posted 13 Aug ’11 at 17:09 | #

    Beautiful pictures of your summer.

    Your recipes and food philosophy are always a great inspiration to me!

  23. Posted 13 Aug ’11 at 19:02 | #

    Beautiful, inspiring post. I love the quick marination tip – must do! And anything that features manchego is a must try. Today I sampled some fab manchego at the Brindisa stall at London’s foodie heaven, Borough Market. Wish I could have bought a huge wedge to take back to Edinburgh to really set off your salad.

  24. Y
    Posted 14 Aug ’11 at 14:38 | #

    What an amazing way to spend the Summer! Exactly the kind of thing I dream of doing :)

  25. Posted 16 Aug ’11 at 15:11 | #

    Aaaah the salad with the little flowers! I would eat that every day. So, so pretty.

  26. mona
    Posted 17 Aug ’11 at 18:23 | #

    Hey David and Luise.
    Just wanted you to know that I held a presentation abuot your blog today in my class. Hope you get many more followers :-)
    See You.

  27. Posted 18 Aug ’11 at 20:41 | #

    Dear Luise and David
    we have given you the blog award,
    you can read more here http://www.naturazin.dk/2011/08/blog-award/
    BW Anja and Zenia

  28. Posted 21 Aug ’11 at 04:25 | #

    Beautiful, beautiful pictures!

  29. Posted 22 Aug ’11 at 03:06 | #

    Hey you guys. I’m so happy to hear your summer is going well. The 3 day festival/ birthday party sounds perfect. What a beautiful salad you made. I can’t wait until I have my own kitchen again and I can cook. On the other hand it’s nice being in Sao Paulo and having everyone else cook for us.

    We really hope you guys get a chance to visit us in Bahia.
    Love, Da

  30. Posted 22 Aug ’11 at 07:14 | #

    Sweden is so beautiful and I am glad you are there to enjoy all the summer has to offer! Beautiful recipe!

  31. Posted 22 Aug ’11 at 07:28 | #

    Just beautiful! Still winter here in NZ but spring just around the corner,,,,your photos make me long for those long summer nights. And I love that salad too :)

  32. Posted 22 Aug ’11 at 19:36 | #

    Gorgeous clicks and salad! So beautiful. I’d love to visit Scandinavia. A perfect place to relax. Elsa is so cute in her tub.



  33. Posted 25 Aug ’11 at 13:02 | #

    For en fantastisk blogg! Her kommer jeg til å bruke mye tid ; )

  34. Posted 25 Aug ’11 at 13:09 | #

    hahha… that is so funny. I just posted a salad very similar to this but still very different. I will have to try this one next time. it is beautiful and looks sooo yummy!

  35. Posted 2 Sep ’11 at 11:33 | #

    What a nice way to spend the summer but what really catches my attention was your salad. The picture looks so delicious! Can’t wait to actually taste it.

  36. Posted 11 Oct ’11 at 09:52 | #

    Hi, I just discovered your blog. It is absolutely beautiful. One of the most aesthetically beautiful blogs I have seen. And I love the stories and recipes!

  37. Posted 1 Mar ’12 at 04:08 | #

    I absolutely adore the outlook you have on life. Not many people have the courage and patience to travel the world with a small child. I love to see a young family that has accomplished so much and makes an effort to live a life full of fun, health & happiness. I find such inspiration from your cooking and from your lifestyle. Thank-you and keep up the great work!

  38. Posted 4 Sep ’12 at 03:07 | #

    Wow, what a beautiful salad! It features some of my favorite foods. I will have to share with my Twitter and Facebook friends. Thanks for the recipe, beautiful pictures, and great story.

  39. Posted 14 Oct ’13 at 06:39 | #

    I couldn’t contain my smile when I saw Elsa’s picture in the tub!:)) for some odd reason that snapshot just reminds me of Dennis the menace(If you’re familiar with the movie/cartoon). I have never tried eating raw beets before although I did use it in making brownies.I love it when I have something new to try:). AMAZING views and lovely summer house by the way :). Also 3-day festival to celebrate one’s birthday was sheer genius!:))

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