Friday 7th August 2020
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Serves
Preparation time:

Ingredients
2 long vines of cherry or baby tomatoes on the vine
Olive oil
4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Sea salt flakes – Maldon smoked salt is divine here.
2 stalks of fresh rosemary
A selection of salad leaves – I used a mixed bag of baby leaves and some red cos
A handful of pumpkin seeds
100g soft goat’s cheese or cream cheese
1 kiwi fruit – peeled and sliced
Half a fennel bulb – thinly sliced

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Recipe by Dominic Franks

This month Dominic Franks suggests delicious salads, ideal for alfresco meals while you enjoy the sunshine.

Summer is finally in full swing and now that the lockdown is being eased a little more, we can thankfully spend time in the garden and open spaces with loved ones. Eating alfresco has always seemed such a wonderfully Mediterranean conceit; the warm evenings, late dinner on a veranda beneath a scented fig tree whilst the sounds of the waves crash against the shore. A cool glass of rosé in one hand and a prosciutto and oregano scented crushed tomato bruschetta in the other. The British version of this used to involve a warm can of lager and a raw-on-the-inside-but-burnt-on-the-outside chicken drumstick whilst we dashed inside from the rain – but I feel we have evolved slightly when it comes to eating outdoors.

One of things I think we still struggle with is an interesting array of salads. To me the salad is as much the main event as the meat. It can in fact be a meal in itself and so I thought I’d share four of my favourite salads. They’re mostly quick and easy to make, although one or two need a little time but believe me it will be worth it.

Method
Pre-heat the oven to 160˚C, then place the tomatoes and rosemary into an oven-proof dish, drizzle liberally with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with a pinch of salt – roast for one hour, then set aside to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, cut and wash your salad and place it in a bowl with the pumpkin seeds, sliced fennel and kiwi fruit then crumble the goat’s cheese on top. Pull the tomatoes off the vine and pop them over the salad, then drizzle with the still warm tomato juices and mix the whole lot together, letting the warm vinaigrette melt the goat’s cheese and crush the tomatoes.

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