Salads that are just perfect for Summer

Summer salads
Summer salads

Salads that are just perfect for Summer

 

Summer has hit us hard, with temperatures reaching the high 30’s and sometimes even 40 degrees. When it comes to making meals, among the foods we eat, salads are the best in the time of such unbearable heat. No one has the will or energy to eat the hot and spicy food that ends us feeling even warmer inside.

 

Salads provide a purpose, and as per Granny Mouse’s culinary team highlights, they offer plenty of bulk or roughage to aid good digestion and elimination. This makes you grow stronger, healthier and eliminates that bloated feeling during those hot days and nights. They also contain vitamin A, vitamin C, beta carotene, calcium, folate and fibre. Leafy vegetables are a good choice for a healthier diet because they don’t contain cholesterol and are naturally low in calories and sodium.

 

In saying all of the above, Granny Mouse Country House & Spa have two wonderful summer salad recipes to share that are sure to be the hit of the household, and especially for the cook who doesn’t have to get all warm and flustered over a hot stove .

 

SUMMER TOMATO SALAD WITH CARAMELIZED ONION

 

A mixture of confit cherry tomatoes, pickled green tomatoes, heirloom halves and oil-cured sundried tomatoes, dressed and topped with caramelized onion

 

Ingredients:

250g       Heirloom cherry tomatoes

100g       Vine tomatoes

100g       Roma tomatoes

100g       Green tomatoes

50g         Sundried tomatoes

Heat 150ml oil until hot (almost smoking), take off heat, add garlic (10 ml) and sundried tomatoes and allow to cool.

 

Ingredients for Pickling Juice:

200g       Garlic, minced

250ml    White vinegar

50g         Dried dill

50g         Black peppercorns, ground

30g         Turmeric

50g         Sugar

30g         Salt

Mix all ingredients in a blender and emulsify.

Add halved green tomatoes to pickle and marinade, for at least 30 minutes.

 

Caramelised Onion:

100g       Red onion

100g       White onion

Fry onions on a low heat until golden in colour.

 

Balsamic Reduction:

100ml    Balsamic Vinegar

50ml      Honey

Bring to a low simmer in a pan and reduce by half or the consistency of a runny syrup is reached.

 

Salad Base:

Rocket

Watercress

Romain lettuce

Croutons

 

On your base of salad leaves, lay out your tomato medley and top with the caramelized onions. Drizzle with balsamic reduction and enjoy.

 

 

SMOKED CHICKEN CAESAR

 

Smoked chicken breast, homemade croutons, smoked bacon bits and a rich Caesar dressing.

 

Ingredients:

Olive oil, for drizzling

4 medium, skinless chicken breasts

300g ciabatta or good quality chewy bread, cut into 2cm cubes

12 streaky bacon rashers

3 romaine lettuces, leaves separated, large leaves torn into half

Small bunch fresh chives, roughly chopped

Parmesan for shaving

 

For the dressing:

8 anchovy fillets in oil, drained

2 small garlic cloves, crushed

3 large free-range egg yolks

Juice of 1 lemon (± 30ml)

2 tsp Dijon mustard

150ml light olive oil

4-5 Tbsp grated parmesan (to taste)

 

Get a frying pan over a high heat, add a drizzle of oil. Once hot, add in seasoned chicken breasts. Fry for 3-4 minutes until golden underneath, then flip them over and fry until cooked. Remove and set aside.

 

Toss the bread with a drizzle of olive oil in a large roasting tin, then spread out in a single layer and add the bacon. Transfer to the oven and roast for 20 minutes, until the croutons are deep golden and the bacon is crisp. Remove and set aside to cool slightly.

 

Meanwhile, make the dressing:

 

Put the anchovies, garlic, egg yolks, lemon and mustard in a pestle and mortar or small food processor. Pound or whizz to a coarse, thick paste. While pounding, or with the motor running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil, so the sauce thickens to the consistency of runny mayonnaise.

* If it starts to look greasy at any point, add a splash of water.

 

Once you’ve added all the oil, stir through the grated parmesan, taste and season – it may need a bit more lemon juice.

* If it’s too thick to drizzle, add a little cold water.

 

To assemble, slice the chicken breasts. Arrange the lettuce leaves in a bowl, then scatter with the croutons, torn bacon and chives. Use a vegetable peeler to shave parmesan over the top, then drizzle over half the dressing and top with the sliced chicken. Drizzle over the remaining dressing, then serve while the chicken is still warm.

 

Enjoy!! And remember, if you don’t feel like getting into the kitchen this summer, pop up to Granny Mouse Country House & Spa and enjoy their summer menus. For more information go to www.grannymouse.co.za

 

Article Courtesy of www.sanda-marketing.com