Now we have so much more of time on our hands, we can be more mindful of our friends, family and neighbours which is lovely but cooking continues to be my solace and I’m taking my time. I’m reminding myself of happier times – when we could travel – by designing simple menus that remind me of a particular culinary experience. Last Sunday, my head was on a Greek Island and our late lunch was similarly themed. It included this super simple salad of blanched broccoli with chopped sun-dried tomatoes and shallots dressed in a Greek honey and lemon dressing and garnished with toasted almonds and a scattering of the smoked chilli flakes I found in Corfu last spring. Here’s the recipe.
400g Tenderstem broccoli, each stem trimmed and cut in half
80g sun-dried tomatoes, drained and roughly chopped
60g shallot, finely chopped
60g feta cheese (please note I left the feta out this time as one of my guests isn’t keen)
60g slivered almonds, lightly toasted
Pul biber, to garnish
For the dressing:
60ml extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp honey (preferably Greek)
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
½ tsp wild oregano
½ tsp Dijon mustard
¼ tsp sea salt flakes
A pinch of red pepper flakes
How I make it
Bring a large pan of generously salted water to the boil and add the broccoli. Blanch for four minutes and drain immediately. Set aside to cool.
Put a small frying plan on a medium heat. When hot, add the slivered almonds and stir around continuously until they are lightly golden. Set aside to cool.
Whisk all the dressing ingredients together and set aside to allow the flavours to mingle.
In a large bowl, mix together the cooled broccoli, the sun-dried tomatoes, shallot and feta. Toss in half the dressing and add more to taste – how much is totally up to you. Turn the salad out onto a pretty plate and garnish with the toasted almonds and pul biber – some chopped fresh dill would be lovely here too.