Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Opportunistic Salads

Here's how today's lunch came together (tinned mackerel, cheese and a drippy melon played roles too). 
   The yellow courgette plant produced another fat one, seemingly overnight. The roquette plants are still pushing up leaves. A couple of days ago, one of the UK papers that I read on-line inspired me with a whole hundred yummy-sounding, simple and seasonal recipes, the kind that assume that what you'd rather be doing is lying in a hammock. Read them all at http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2009/jul/19/easy-quick-recipes and you'll come upon one for a courgette salad which adds up to greatly more than the sum of its parts. I tinkered with it a bit. No Parmesan around so I ignored that and I also used lemon juice instead of vinegar in the dressing but, honestly, what a bright, little dish--especially served on a bottle-green plate.
   Next up is ye olde cooked peppers and garlic cloves in olive oil. No recipe for this. Just cut neatish strips of as many red and yellow peppers as you have. Add more garlic cloves than you think decent and simmer the lot until tender in plenty of olive oil. Eat at room temperature. Keep leftovers to top pasta or toasted baguette. Speaking of which... 
    Odd lengths of loaf have been accumulating in the corner of the counter where I keep bread. Using the olive oil left from the peppers, I made croutons. About half an hour before lunch, I chopped four tomatoes, threw in slightly less than that amount of croutons, chopped a couple of anchovies quite finely, threw in some basil and dressed the lot with oil and balsamic. 
   I love, love sparky, colourful food like this on a summer day when--pause to check the thermometer--it's 29 degrees outside.

No comments: