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Haunted Masquerade Dinner Party: Insalata Mista

An easy, tasty salad to entice guests at your dinner party.

Courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis of Everyday Italian on the Food Network.

Difficulty: Easy
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 6 to 8 servings

1/3 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup white wine vinegar or fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt, plus more for seasoning
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
8 cups arugula
4 cups bite-size pieces radicchio, from 1 (10-ounce) head
1 carrot, peeled
1 hothouse cucumber, peeled

Blend the basil, vinegar, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper in a blender. With the machine running, gradually blend in the oil. Place the arugula and radicchio in a wide shallow bowl. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the carrot over the salad. Shave the cucumber into a medium bowl. Pat the cucumber shavings with paper towels to absorb the excess moisture. Add the cucumbers to the salad.

Do-Ahead Tip: The vinaigrette and salad can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover separately and refrigerate. Whisk the dressing to blend before using. Toss the salad with enough dressing to coat. Season the salad, to taste, with salt and pepper and serve.

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