Composed salads are a staple of old-fashioned French bistro menus, especially at lunchtime. In many, tasty little morsels of some part of a bird are the meaty flourish added to a good green salad—often with those skinny green beans the French love, a crouton or two, and maybe some lardons for good measure. Everything is dressed with a serviceable vinaigrette.
In French, these salads always sound elegant, even if the ingredients are humble, like salade de gésiers—made with duck gizzards. Salade de foie de volaille—that’s chicken livers, bub. But they’re always very tasty.
For fun and added flavor, I use the Indian spice blend garam masala. Usually a mixture of cardamom, black pepper, cumin, clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon, garam masala is easy to make at home in a spice mill, or you can buy it ready-made.