Thursday 16 May 2013

Wild garlic salad


Spring is about new beginnings. This Spring has been slow to arrive in this little green island this year and everyone was feeling it. All those plans for balconies and gardens and longer evenings in the surf were curtailed. Even the buds on the trees and the blossoms on the flowers were all holding in, ready to burst with their potential but not quite trusting that winter was over yet.

For me, Spring is about fresher ingredients, planting in the garden and always saying that I'm going to seek out wild garlic and forage more this year. I am a doer but I'm also a doer who has tricked herself into thinking she needs a check list to make tasks legitimate and to get things done. I waited all winter to set about getting things done in Spring and then spring never sprung. Lesson learnt, I've thrown the to-do lists out the window and gone with what feels right. It felt right the other day to stop the car when I saw what I thought was wild garlic and then to pull over right away and harvest the beautiful juicy stems and milky-white blossoms from the little forest on the road side. Listening to the birds in the trees, smelling the faint garlic scent in the air and feeling protected by the canopy from the rainshower happening outside this little world transformed my weekend. Getting home and making this salad was the cherry on the icing on my cake. I've been talking about a food blog for years. Now is the time.
In addition to foraging, I recommend putting on your rain jacket and getting outside anyway. Those emails can wait. Those dishes can be washed later. Those clothes can be put on a wash cycle while you're walking in the Spring time sunshine. You can run under a tree when it rains. You can take even thirty minutes out of your day to breathe in fresh air, whether you live in the country or a bus ride from a park. Do it!

This recipe for my wild garlic salad is just one of many wild garlic creations that will feature in the next few blogs. It is so fresh and zingy and full of delicate flavours that complement so many different foods that wild garlic has me very excited of the culinary creations I can make in my little apartment kitchen.

This recipe serves:
1 person for a mega salad dinner
2 people for a sizeable salad dinner on the side or
4 people for a side salad for a seperate meal.

1 bunch of wildgarlic stems with flowers (maybe 8/10 strands)
1 green apple
1/2 courgette
1 handful of wild rocket (from garden or shop)
1/2 cup of millet
1 lemon
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp honey
1 tsp olive oil/melted coconut oil
2 tsp sesame seeds
1 egg (per person and optional addition to salad)
2 small pots
Chopping board
Sharp knife
Lemon juicer/fork for juicing
Empty jam jar

Measure out 1/2 cup of millet and add just over 1 cup of cold water into a pot
Add pinch salt + lid to cover.
Place on a high heat until water comes to the boil, then recover and simmer for 20-30 minutes until millet is tender and all water has been soaked up.
Grate in zest of 1 lemon and stir through gently, cover and set aside.

After you put the millet on, prep your other ingredients.
Put juice 1/2 lemon, honey, soy sauce and oil into jam jar. Place lid on and shake-this is your dressing

Chop garlic stems finely, pull apart the flowers
Slice courgette lengthways and then slice diaganolly into thin strips
Slice rocket roughly
Slice apple into quarters, take out core and slice into thin strips (see photo so you know what I'm talking about)

If you want to add the boiled egg on top then put egg into pot of cold water and bring to the boil.
Once water is at boiling point, set timer for 3 mins.
Take off heat, drain water and fill pot with cold water to cool and stop egg from cooking further
Give the shell a few knocks on the counter top so it lightly cracks.
Peel the shell off and slice egg in half to top your salad.

Once millet is cooked, simply mix all your veg through the millet.
Add your dressing.
Sprinkle with sesame seeds (sunflower or pumpkin lightly toasted too are GREAT)
Top with egg and enjoy!
You can always drizzle a little extra lemon juice over each one if you like.

The rocket goes really well with the wild garlic and the dressing is lovely and light, making sure it doesn't take away from the flavours.

Foraging is great for the soul but also for your body-the food is fresh, local and in season and better still it's FREE!

Enjoy! X

1 comment:

  1. This is such a beautiful photo...and your posts are creatively inspiring. Bravo! x