, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

It’s a glorious late summer’s morning here in Newport (summer officially ends in the UK on Friday 22nd September) and the birds have finally found the lovely new bird feeder I installed in my garden a few weeks ago.  And if they’re being well fed, so should we be!  Whilst many people see lettuce as a salad ingredient and therefore always served cold, I’ve been experimenting recently with cutting down on kitchen waste – and lettuce is often the main culprit.  There’s only so much Lettuce, Pea and Mint soup one can eat – even though I do love it.  If that doesn’t appeal, how about this fabulous salad from the Hemsley sisters which they describe as “An easy, fresh supper, bursting with flavour and just right for long, balmy evenings”.  It’s featured in their second book ‘Good + Simple’ but I have it on a page torn out of the August 2016 Waitrose magazine. img_2952
This is my version of their original recipe with a few tweaks and changes – I’m sure their original is fantastic but I didn’t want to use coconut Oil or butter for example.  So, here it is:

5 tbsp olive oil *
2 red onions, thinly sliced
4 medium carrots
200g frozen broad beans defrosted in warm water (or 500g fresh, podded and blanched for 2-3 mins in boiling water)
200g fresh or frozen peas
2 gem lettuce, trimmed, leaves separated and chopped into chunks (or any lettuce lurking in the fridge!)
1/2 lemon, zest and juice
small bunch of flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped,
250g pack of halloumi cut into chunks

1. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a heavy frying pan, add the onion and gently fry for 10 mins until soft and lightly caramelised, stirring occasionally.
2. Either spiralise the carrots or peel into strips with a julienne or vegetable peeler, set aside. Slip the broad beans from their outer skin (warning, this takes a bit of time but is worth the effort).
3. Turn the heat up under the onions, stir in the broad beans and frozen peas with a small pinch of salt. After 2 mins add the carrot and lettuce and stir gently for a minute or two.

4. Whisk the remaining olive oil (3tbsp) with lemon zest and juice, season and toss through the vegetables with most of the parsley.  Transfer to a large serving plate.
5. Wipe out the pan and dry fry the halloumi over a medium heat until browned. Scatter over the salad with the remaining parsley.

Enjoy as is, with extra lemon and oil and crusty/crisp bread to mop up the juices.

A note about the olive oil.  I used the Basilippo Organic as shown in the picture.  Basilippo is a 20 hectare, family run estate with over 5,500 arbequina olive trees.  In addition to their award winning olive oils, they also produce an absolutely delicious Aromas, a fabulous union of their beautiful olive oil with natural extract of orange (they also produce a vanilla one I think).  I have just messaged them about suppliers in the UK and will report back once I have more information.  Next time I make this I’ll use the organic EVOO as I did here for the main dish and 2 tbsp for the dressing (see 4. Method)  with a final 1 tbsp of the Aromas Orange sprinkled over the finished dish.  UK readers can buy Basilippo oils in London from Santos and Santos suppliers of Artisan Spanish Foods or direct from Basilippo online.