Mr. McGregor's Garden Salad

Peter Rabbit would surely select this fresh-picked bounty of color and good nutrition as his favorite and so will your children. Fill a platter with tender and mild mâche salad greens, French green beans, snow peas, cauliflower, broccoli, multi-color carrots, green onions, button mushrooms and radishes. Firm vegetables are blanched by plunging them into an ice bath to make them fork tender. Serve with the pleasantly tart Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette on the side so any leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for another meal. Serve salad with hard-boiled eggs and top with goat or feta cheese, if desired.

Makes 6 servings


  • 4 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 6 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 4 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 4 teaspoons fresh tarragon, minced
  • 4 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 small cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • SALAD:
  • 2 quarts water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups fresh French green beans
  • 2 cups fresh sugar snap peas
  • 2 cups fresh white cauliflower, chopped
  • 2 cups fresh green cauliflower, chopped
  • 2 cups fresh broccoli, chopped
  • 1 (3.5-ounce) package mâche rosettes
  • 6 red radishes
  • 5 medium rainbow carrots, roughly chopped
  • 3 or 4 green onions, trimmed
  • 6 hardboiled eggs


For vinaigrette, in a small bowl whisk together lemon zest, lemon juice, vinegar, honey, tarragon, thyme, mustard and garlic. Add olive oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking until the vinaigrette is emulsified. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate until serving time.

In a 4-quart saucepan or Dutch oven, combine water and salt; bring to a boil. Separately blanch green beans, peas, cauliflower and broccoli for 1 minute each or until vegetables are slightly softened but still firm in the center. Transfer vegetables to a bowl of ice water and cool thoroughly; drain.

Arrange mâche, blanched vegetables, radishes, carrots and onions on a large platter. Place unpeeled eggs in a serving bowl, providing individual small saucers for discarded shells. (Or, peel, slice and arrange eggs over salad.) Serve salad with Lemon-Thyme Vinaigrette.