Wednesday, 3 February 2010

A warm salad for a rainy night

It doesn't sound entirely pre-possessing, does it, salad and rain not being best buddies, but stick with me. I've blogged before on the fabulousness that is Jerusalem artichoke soup and it does tend to be my reflex cooking method as it somewhat dims the side effects. However, last night I was in the mood for something punchier and more textured. Pace Nigel Slater, this is what I came up with.

Bung a couple of chicken thighs, legs, whatever, in the oven to roast with plenty of salt and lemon. That's the protein taken care of. Peel a big handful of Jersualem artichokes and dip into acidulated water. Steam them until tender - you may find it easier to cut the larger ones in half so they all steam equally. It takes about 15-20 minutes, but go carefully because they do have a tendency to turn to mush.

While they're steaming away, fry off some pancetta or streaky bacon with a sliced leek. Once golden and appetising-looking, remove from the pan with a slotted spoon. Slice your artichokes into pound coin thicknesses and add to the pan with a little more oil if needed. Sauté until golden brown and crisp then add the bacon and leek back in and season.

Whisk up a good mustardy dressing - I used a tbsp Dijon mustard, a squeeze of lemon and a lot of olive oil, then add a good handful of finely chopped parsley. On a plate arrange your chicken pieces and I put alongside a handful of pea shoots for the colour and sweetness. Then toss your artichoke mixture in the mustardy dressing and spoon on top of the pea shoots so they wilt a little. Sprinkle over a little more parsley and lemon if desired and tuck in.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I made Onion Soup with sheep cheese laden bits of baked baguette floating on top. Delicious.
As a starter.
I had it as a main course.

There is only so much you can eat before you start to wonder how much onion is too much.