food for thought

by michelle

Archive for the ‘salad’ Category

saffron cauliflower + tomato, onion and roasted lemon salad

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Here are 2 salads from the master of salads, Yotam Ottolenghi. Serve them as part of a mezze selection or as side dishes.

Cauliflower is so versatile. In this recipe from PLENTY it’s paired with raisins and olives.

Preheat your oven to 200ºC (390ºF). Soak 1½ teaspoons of saffron strands in a little boiling water and allow to infuse. To a large salad bowl add a medium cauliflower (broken into florets), 1 large sliced red onion, 100g (3½ oz) of moist of sultanas, 90g (3¼ oz) of pitted green olives, 4 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 bay leaves and salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Add the soaked saffron and toss everything to combine. Transfer to a baking tray, cover and cook for 30-40 minutes, stirring halfway through. I uncovered the tray for some of the cooking time to allow the cauliflower to brown a little more. Allow to cool a little and stir in 4 tablespoons of roughly chopped parsley.

This unusual tomato, onion and roasted lemon salad was published by bon appétit.

tomato-salad

Preheat your oven to 160ºC (325ºF). Halve and thinly slice 1 small lemon and cook the slices in a medium saucepan of boiling water for 2 minutes. Drain, pat dry and toss with 1 tablespoon of finely sliced fresh sage leaves, ½ a teaspoon of sugar, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Spread them onto a baking sheet lined with baking paper and bake until they are dry and slightly coloured. Allow them to cool. Meanwhile, whisk 2 teaspoons of pomegranate syrup with ½ a teaspoon of ground allspice, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and salt and freshly ground black pepper. Add 700g (1½ lbs) of mixed tomatoes, ½ a finely sliced red onion, generous amounts of roughly chopped fresh parsley and mint and the cooled lemon slices. Season again to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper and toss gently.
 

Written by michelle picker

August 7, 2017 at 5:44 am

minced chicken salad

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Loosely based on Thai Larb, this minced chicken salad makes a tasty summer meal.

lao-style-chicken-salad

To cook the chicken you will need some Thai chilli paste in soya oil. Add 3 tablespoons of the paste and some of the oil to a saucepan and heat over medium heat. Add 450g (1 lb) of minced chicken thigh meat and cook, mixing well and breaking the mince into small pieces. If necessary add a little water. When the chicken is cooked set it aside to cool. In a bowl make a salad of finely shredded celery, finely sliced red onion, julienned carrot, plenty of chopped fresh coriander (cilantro) and mint, bean thread noodles (cooked for 2 minutes and shocked under cold running water), chopped cucumber, chopped tomatoes, finely chopped fresh red chilli and chopped roasted peanuts. When the chicken has cooled add it to the salad and season with fish sauce and fresh lime juice to taste.

Written by michelle picker

April 17, 2017 at 5:51 am

carrot salad

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This Turkish salad was a perfect way to enjoy our home-grown carrots.

carrot-salad

Shred or finely julienne approximately 5 cups of carrots. Heat some olive oil in a saucepan and add the carrots, stirring until they are just starting to wilt and change colour. In a bowl whip 1 cup of thick natural yoghurt with 2 crushed cloves of garlic and ½ a teaspoon of salt. Combine the yoghurt and carrots adding fresh herbs of your choice (I used mint and parsley) and mixing well. This salad makes a great side dish for any Turkish or Middle Eastern meal. We enjoyed it with left-over roast lamb (fried souvlaki-style with onions and Baharat spices), a green salad and Greek pita bread.

souvlaki-plate

Written by michelle picker

March 12, 2017 at 5:44 am

baked whole snapper + bean sprout salad

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Here’s a Japanese recipe for baked fish.

baked-snapper

After cleaning and drying, cut some slits into the sides of your fish to allow the flavouring to penetrate. For a 1 kg (2 lb) fish, mix 2½ tablespoons of sake, 2 teaspoons of soy sauce, ½ a teaspoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of finely grated fresh ginger. Place some slices of onion and carrot into the banana leaves, foil or paper in which you’ll bake the fish. Oil the fish on both sides and lay it onto the onions and carrots, topping with some more onion and carrot slices. Pour over the soy mixture and close the parcel tightly. Cook in a moderate oven or on a barbecue until the fish is cooked and flaking.

I served mine with a bean sprout salad.

bean-sprout-salad

Slice some carrot and red pepper in to fine strips. Bring a pot of water to boil and add ¼ of a teaspoon of salt. Add the carrots and cook for 1 minute. Add the bean sprouts and peppers and allow to come to the boil before removing from the heat and shocking under cold water. Make a dressing of 1½ tablespoons of soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of white rice vinegar and 2 teaspoons of sesame oil. Toss the cooled and drained vegetables in the dressing, adding some finely sliced green onions. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds.

Written by michelle picker

February 16, 2017 at 5:52 am

watermelon and feta salad

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I waited far too long to try this salad. Sweet and salty, easy to make and perfect for a hot Summer’s day.

watermelon-and-feta-salad

Cut some watermelon into bite-sized chunks and add some finely sliced red onion. Crumble in a generous amount of a good feta cheese and some sliced fresh mint. Drizzle with olive oil, toss and serve.

Written by michelle picker

January 11, 2017 at 5:47 am

sous vide beef ribs

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Having just acquired an Anova Precision Cooker, I decided to experiment with some beef ribs. This very useful page at chefsteps helped me choose a temperature and timing. After 24 hours of cooking at 70ºC (158ºF) the result was moist and tender meat, not falling apart but coming away from the bone cleanly. Of course you can still cook great ribs without this equipment, but the Anova allows you to set and forget and to concentrate on the other parts of the meal without being distracted.

beef-ribs

While the meat is cooking make a barbecue sauce. In a saucepan combine ½ a cup of dark brown sugar,½ a cup of  ketchup, ¼ of a cup of cider vinegar, ¼ of a cup of tomato passata or purée, ¼ of a cup of molasses (treacle), 1 tablespoon of tomato paste, 1 tablespoon of Frank’s Hot Sauce, 2 teaspoons of onion powder, 2 teaspoons of garlic powder, 2 teaspoons of Worcestershire Sauce and 2 teaspoons of Dijon mustard. Cook over low heat for 20 minutes. When the ribs are cooked remove them from their vacuum bag, dry them and place them on some baking paper on an oven tray. Brush on generous amounts of barbecue sauce and grill on all sides under a hot grill.

ribs-cut

I served my ribs with extra barbecue sauce, oven potato and sweet potato chips, vinegar-dressed cole slaw, and cucumbers in a sour cream and dill dressing.

ribs-plate

Written by michelle picker

November 6, 2016 at 5:39 am

broad bean and feta salad

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These lovely young broad beans came fresh from our garden.

broad-bean-and-feta-salad

Steam 450g (1 lb) of fresh broad beans until just tender.  Drain and shock them under cold running water. In a bowl combine the beans with a generous amount of fresh mint, 60 – 80g (2 – 3 oz) of feta cheese and the finely grated or chopped rind of half a lemon. Squeeze the lemon juice into a small bowl. Add 4 times as much olive oil and plenty of freshly ground black pepper then whisk to emulsify. Add this dressing to the beans and toss to combine.

Written by michelle picker

October 25, 2016 at 6:08 am