A fresh salad
This is one of my favourite salads as it’s so full of lovely, fresh flavours to celebrate the arrival of Spring and Summer. The combination of leaves with the herbs, lemon and garlic is delicious and if you’re vegetarian or vegan you can leave out the parmesan and the lamb steaks.
This salad can be easily adapted depending on the season i.e. replacing asparagus with something else such as purple sprouting broccoli, cauliflower or butternut squash. It makes a lovely supper or lunch. If you’re busy you can cook the onions in advance, marinade the meat, wash the potatoes, trim the asparagus and make the dressing, all ready to go.
Recipe for 2 people
1 bunch fresh asparagus
2/3 caramelised red onions *
1 x generous handful fresh parmesan shavings
1 x cup fresh or frozen peas
3 /4 handfuls of peppery garden leaves – rocket is really good.
Fresh herbs: mint, coriander, basil, parsley, chives, rosemary & thyme
For the dressing:
Juice and zest of half a lemon
Extra virgin olive oil
1 fat clove garlic crushed
1 x tsp Dijon mustard
Spring lamb steaks
*Peel the red onions and slice thinly into wheels. Bake with a generous glug each of olive oil and balsamic and add a teaspoon of sugar. Bake in the oven at180C until very soft and turning brown in colour.
While the onions are caramelizing, marinate the steaks with a little olive oil,some crushed garlic and a generous handful of fresh rosemary leaves removed from the stalk. Add a pinch of salt & pepper.
Half fill a pan of water and add the new potatoes. Bring to the boil and cook until al dente, then drain.
Trim the asparagus and place on a roasting tray with a drizzle of olive oil and season. Place in the oven at 180C until they are al dente – approx. 10 mins.
To make the dressing – Use a teaspoon of Dijon mustard, crushed garlic, juice & zest of lemon, whisk together and add approx 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil until it begins to thicken. Add a pinch of salt and taste! It should be lemony and garlicky.
Once the onions and asparagus are cooked, remove from the oven and leave to cool.
Put the leaves, peas and onions into a large salad bowl and lightly toss with the dressing. Add a handful each of the herbs, torn not chopped. Add the parmesan shavings and place the asparagus on top.
Heat a griddle pan until it’s smoking. Add the lamb steaks, and marinade and cook for 5 mins on each side. Check they are done to your liking – you might need to cook them a little longer.