Since I've been exploring some of the fruits, vegetables and seafood that comprise the flavors of Florida, I was fortunate to have had the opportunity to visit Mac Farms for a fresh-from-the-earth tour while on a trip to South Walton. Mac Farms is one of many local growers that supplies produce to area chefs and restaurants supporting the popular farm-to-table food trend.
One of the many South Walton restaurants incorporating locally grown produce in their menu is WaterColor Resort's AAA Four Diamond restaurant, Fish Out of Water. While enjoying a delicious breakfast there, I discovered that their chef even used kumquats from his very own garden to create a sweet and tangy salad dressing. Chef de Cuisine, Lawrence Klang, shared this recipe with us below. The persimmons, pomegranate and kumquat make it a refreshing autumnal dish to share for Thanksgiving.
Whitakers Arugula, Persimmons, Pomegranate and Kumquat Dressing
8 oz Arugula
2 ea Pomegranate, seeded
½ Kumquat, sliced paper thin, seeds removed
5 ea Shallots, minced and rinsed
1 ½ T. Banyuls or Sherry Vinegar
1 t Tupelo Honey
5 T Grapeseed Oil
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, create a dressing using the sliced kumquat, shallots and vinegar.
Slowly add the grapeseed oil to this, season and set aside.
Slice the persimmons from the bottom into thin rings and place on the serving plates in a circular pattern.
Dress the arugula with the kumquat dressing and place on the serving plates on top of the persimmons.
Sprinkle pomegranate over salad, making sure that the kumquat slices are also visible.
Note from Chef Lawrence Klang:
All of the above ingredients, with pomegranate being the exception, can be found in northwest Florida. Our Arugula is supplied to us by the Whitaker Family, Persimmons from Worthing Farms and our kumquats by myself. The kumquat will lend additional flavor to the dressing as they are allowed to steep longer.