You’ve just been told you’re having salad for dinner. Now tell me it didn’t conjure up miserable images of bitter shredded Iceberg lettuce and half-moons of joyless cucumber, dotted with insipid chunks of greenhouse tomatoes if you’re lucky.
I don’t consider myself to be a massive salad fan, and I think the above is the reason. It doesn’t need to be quite so sad. I’ve recently realised that I sulk a lot less at the prospect of salad for dinner if at least one element of it is warm: chickpeas gently heated with some cumin and coriander; freshly barbecued veggies; roasted shredded meat.
The other aspect to which you must give SERIOUS consideration is the dressing. A good dressing compliments and brings together all the ingredients and can take a salad to new heights. If I had to choose, I would go as far to say that the dressing is the most important part.
So the salads that I’m looking forward to dining on this season are:
- Crispy duck with hoisin dressing
- Prawn cocktail
- Spicy cauliflower, mango and chickpea
- Avocado and feta
- Chorizo, sweetcorn and black bean
- Spicy chicken and butternut squash
- Twisted Nicoise with asparagus, and tomato polenta croutons
- Fennel, courgette and pea with goats’ cheese
- Lentil and chickpea salad
- Falafel salad with tahini dressing
Mmmm, crispy duck … think I will start with that one!