1/2 cup pepitas
2 tablespoons regular olive oil
2 teaspoons aged sherry vinegar
Virgin olive oil
Pepper, freshly ground
3 cups watercress, about 1 large bunch, cleaned
3 Belgian endives, cleaned and separated into spears
2 cups fresh ricotta, like Bellwether Farms
3 Fuyu persimmons, washed and cut into 1/4-inch slices widthwise
1 pomegranate, seeded for about 1 cup of seeds
1/4 cup pomegranate molasses
Put the pepitas in a medium sauté pan with a pinch of salt and toast over medium heat for 2 to 3 minutes until they start to get fragrant and golden. Set aside to cool. In a medium bowl whisk the sherry vinegar with a pinch of salt and pepper. Whisk in a tablespoon of virgin oil. Add the watercress and the endive to the bowl and gently toss. Use about three persimmon rounds (half rounds if large) per plate, laid down in a triangle shape. Place endive spears between the persimmons, then a good handful of the watercress in the center of the plates. Dot dollops of ricotta around the cress, and sprinkle with pepitas and pomegranate seeds. Drizzle with pomegranate molasses and finish with a drizzle of virgin olive oil and a grinding of pepper. You can also arrange this all on one big beautiful platter, family-style.
Notes: You can grill the persimmon for added smokiness. And this salad is just as beautiful with roasted squash substituted for the persimmon.