If I had to pick a last meal, I would probably plump for a salad. Boring health-freak I hear you thinking. But there would also be bread, cheese, salami, maybe even a pork pie. The kind of lunch one eats on a rare sunny day spent on a beach, or the staple meal of French holidays. A properly crusty baguette (so crisp you can cut your gums on the crust-this has happened to me), perhaps some rillette or pate, a good flavoursome cheese, some cheap red plonk in a tumbler, some wafer thin slices of parma ham, or saucisson or salami, a fresh green salad, perhaps with some anchovies, soft-boiled eggs, olives, tomatoes, homemade mayonnaise. This is truly great food. And it requires so little effort, so little preparation. This would be my final meal, but it is definitely seasonally specific. But salads themselves are not. Salads can be good all year around, it just requires a little extra ingenuity and effort. The real test of any cook’s skill is his/her salad making abilities. They are one of my favourite things to make, they allow for improvisation, experimentation, and they are infinitely rewarding to eat.
So here is seasonal salad number 2, another celebration of spring.
Apple,Fennel, Quinoa, Goats Cheese and Pumpkin seed Salad.
(you could always use cous cous instead of quinoa, Giant Israeli cous cous works very well- Waitrose stock it)
1/2 an apple, sliced/mandolined very fine
1/2 bulb fennel, sliced fine
toasted pumpkin seed, handful
handful rocket/baby spinach
crumbly goats cheese
Olive oil, lemon juice, sea salt and pepper
Slice veg, toss with squeeze lemon, glug good oil, pinch salt and pepper. Crumble cheese on top and sprinkle with seeds.