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Dishes of the Year: Artisan Greens Salad at Peterson's

Of all the slow-roasted, fall-off-the-bone, melt-in-your-mouth dishes that I sampled as a food writer this past year, probably the most surprising dish I had was a salad at Peterson’s (7690 E. 96th St., Fishers, 317-598-8863). Anyone who’s dined with me knows I’m not an especially dainty eater, but this artfully plated toss of red oak leaf lettuce, frisée, and other delicate greens hits on every textural and flavor note: the rich tang of goat cheese, sweet cranberries, and candied pecans, and a bracing balsamic dressing. But the kicker comes in the form of microscopically thin shavings of root vegetables—sometimes rutabagas or carrot, often parsnips, usually beets—that crackle in your mouth for a second and then disappear into the barest earthy hint of the dirt they were grown in.

 

See more Dishes of the Year here. This article appeared in Menu Guide 2014.

A graduate of IU’s Master of Fine Arts program in creative writing, Terry Kirts hails from a town in Illinois so small it didn’t have a restaurant until he was in the 8th grade. Since 2000, he’s more than made up for the dearth of eateries in his childhood, logging hundreds of meals as the dining critic for WHERE Indianapolis, Indianapolis Woman, and NUVO before joining Indianapolis Monthly as a contributing editor in 2007. A senior lecturer in creative writing at IUPUI, Terry has published his poetry and creative nonfiction in a number of literary journals and anthologies, including Gastronomica, Alimentum, and Home Again: Essays and Memoirs from Indiana, and he’s the author of the poetry collection To the Refrigerator Gods, published by Seven Kitchens Press in 2011.
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