Ready in 15 minutes

Serves 8

If there’s such a thing as a sexy salad, this might be it. Baby gem lettuce is a small lettuce variety that resembles a bite-sized version of romaine. Topped with brilliantly green pistachio-pesto crumbs and garnished with rose petals, this is a salad to make when you’re looking to impress. And I mean impress yourself, not anyone else. 


  • 6 baby gem lettuces

  • 1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs

    ModernTable Bookcover The Modern Table: Kosher Recipes for Everyday Gatherings Kim Kushner
  • 1/2 cup basil leaves

  • 1/4 cup shelled unsalted pistachios

  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

  • 3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt, plus extra for sprinkling

  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 tsp edible dried rose petals, crushed (see Tip) 

Special tools or equipment

Food processor



Slice baby gems in half lengthwise and rinse them under cold running water. Dry well with paper towels or in a salad spinner. Do not pull leaves apart—you want to keep the halves intact.

In a food processor, combine breadcrumbs, basil, pistachios, and mustard. Process until a paste forms. Add olive oil, salt, and pepper and process for another minute, until thoroughly combined.

Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil on a serving platter. Sprinkle a pinch of salt on top. Arrange baby gems, cut-side up, on the platter. Spoon pistachio crumbs over the lettuce, then garnish with rose petals.


Good to Know Edible rose petals are simply dried rose petals and are readily available online, in specialty food stores, and at most farmer’s markets. Check the packaging for organically grown roses that are free of sprays and pesticides. And, keep in mind, a little bit goes a long way.

Make It Ahead The baby gem lettuce can be cleaned and dried, wrapped in paper towels, and stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Make It Ahead The pistachio crumbs can be prepared 1 week in advance and stored in the refrigerator.

Excerpted from The Modern Table: Kosher Recipes for Everyday Gatherings by Kim Kushner. Photography by Kate Sears. Copyright © 2022 by Kim Kushner. Excerpted with permission from Figure 1 Publishing. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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