Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Sunshine salad with artichoke vinaigrette


Red, yellow and orange bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, artichokes, lemon, basil, basil oil, chrysanthemum petals, salad leaves, Wensleydale with cranberries.
1) To prepare the artichoke vinaigrette: Break the stem of the artichoke (enlist the help of a big strong man if it's a stubborn one and you're gender-biased *tee hee*) as close to the base as you can, then put the artichoke head first into a pan of hot, salted water and keep it submerged with an upturned pan lid (or plate). It will take 20-30 minutes to cook until tender - test the base with a knife - if it goes in smoothly it's ready! Slice the artichoke leaves and mix into equal parts of basil oil, lemon juice and sprinkle with chopped basil.

2) Core, de-seed and slice the peppers into slivers. Halve the cherry tomatoes and place under the grill (seed side up) for 5 minutes, turning the peppers half way through.

3) Mix the salad leaves with the artichokes and arrange on a plate with the tomatoes and peppers.

4) Cube the Wensleydale and add to the salad, then wash the chrysanthemums, pluck the petals and sprinkle onto the salad.

If you like the idea of flowers in salads from a decorative point of view, but don't like the idea of eating them then why not use them as a garnish? (please note - gerbera daisies are NOT edible, though daisies are!)

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