Let's talk about "deconstructed" things. Like, when you order the "Deconstructed Banana Cream Pie" and you get an abstract piece of Graham cracker with slices of brûléed bananas and dots of whipped cream artfully arranged around the plate. Nothing (irrationally) annoys me more than this—a deconstructed version of something that should never be eaten any other way than in its constructed form (in my humble, correct opinion). Especially desserts that are perfect as is and should never be messed with. Attempting to be fancy for the sake of fancy (and adding nothing, even taking away from taste) is something that has forever irked me.
However however however, if a salad could be both simple and boujee and even begin to attempt deconstructed status, this would be it. It looks so beautiful served on a light bed of a yogurt and olive oil dressing, but it's the easiest thing to make and serve. You don't have to tiptoe around how to take a "purposeful" bite (how does one take a "bite" of the deconstructed banana cream pie?)—you merely scoop servings of the salad and the perfect amount of yogurt dressing lies underneath. The mint and pistachios are the under-the-radar MVPs in this summer salad that is an otherwise pretty standard, no-fail combo.
Radish, snap pea, and cucumber salad with mint and yogurt
Yields about 4-6 servings
1 bunch radishes, sliced into eighths or so - small, bite sized pieces
A couple large handfuls of snap peas, sliced in half
½ large cucumber, sliced into quarters
10 or so large mint leaves, chiffonade (divided between salad and topping)
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1 T champagne vinegar
A couple pinches of salt to taste
A good amount of freshly cracked black pepper
¼ cup shelled pistachios (for topping)
¾ cup plain, non-fat Greek yogurt (I love Siggi’s)
2 T good extra virgin olive oil
½ T lemon juice
1 small clove garlic (you will grate it on a microplane, or very finely mince)
Begin by making the salad: in a large, wide bowl, combine radishes, snap peas, cucumber, and about ¾ of the chiffonade mint leaves. Then, pour 2 T olive oil and 1 T vinegar over the top. Season with salt and pepper, and stir together well. Set aside, but toss often as you work on the yogurt dressing (this part could actually be done 1-2 hours ahead and stored in fridge)
Then, make the yogurt dressing: in a small bowl, vigorously stir together yogurt, olive oil, and lemon juice until smooth. Grate garlic clove into yogurt mixture. Stir together, and season to taste with salt.
To assemble salad, spoon all of the yogurt mixture into a pile in the center of a large serving platter. Use the back of a big spoon to spread it in a swirled, circular pattern. Drizzle with a bit of extra olive oil. Then Spoon the salad mixture onto the center of the yogurt. Sprinkle with remaining mint, as well as the pistachios. Give it another grind of black pepper, and serve right away, spooning portions and making sure to include the yogurt dressing on the bottom.