Tuesday, 17 June 2014

SALAD DAYS

It's summertime!  Why can't the weather always be like this? England really is the most beautiful country at this time of year & food tastes sooo much better eaten outside in the sunshine.


Summer food to me means bar b q's,  lunch in the pub garden drinking pimms & lemonade, and of course salads. Gone are the days that salad meant lettuce, cucumber & tomato. There are no limits to how creative you can be with salads & that's what I love about them. I have two recipes for you here and they are both absolutely delicious!

first up is  Strawberry, Avocado, Cucumber & Goats cheese salad

We had these 2 salads as side dishes at a Bar B Q, so they served 8 people, but if you were making one as a meal in itself they would obviously not stretch so far...........

1 head of baby gem lettuce
1 large avocado
1 punnet of strawberries (about 200g)
1/2 large cucumber
75g soft goats cheese/ feta cheese. 

peel & core the Avocado.
remove the stalks of the strawberries and slice
slice & chop finely the cucumber.  chop or tear up the lettuce
Arrange in a salad bowl with the goats cheese & some coarse ground black pepper (optional)
For the dressing recipe see below.

second Salad is Beetroot, Red apple & Hazelnut salad

3 medium sized raw beetroots
2 red apples (sliced, chopped with the core removed)
100g radishes  (I used different color ones, but regular red ones are fine too)
1 head of baby gem lettuce
couple of handfuls of chopped hazlenuts

roast the beetroots at 200 for about an hour depending on how big they are. when cooled, peel and slice
about 25 mins before the end of cooking time, take the radishes (leave them whole) & put in an oven proof dish. drizzle with a little light olive oil (or other cooking oil of your choice) toss them in the oil so that they are well covered & put them in the oven.
Roasting them like this makes them milder & sweeter, but if you love the peppery, crunchy taste of raw radishes you don't have to bother cooking them.
core the apple, slice & chop it up.
chop up the lettuce. Arrange all the ingredients together in a serving dish and sprinkle with hazelnuts.

                                      Kia (whippet) & Kanga enjoying summer!
dressing
4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard (please make sure your mustard is GF)
2 teaspoons maple syrup
simply whisk the above together in a bowl. put in a jar/ bottle & shake well before serving.

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