I remember when a salad used to be quite mundane, maybe some iceberg lettuce, tomato, cucumber & carrot with a bit of dressing, which is till an ok side salad for a quick meat & salad meal. Salads can be just so exciting, start with the freshest ingredients & think colours, textures; with toasted nuts or seeds, flavour combos, roasted veg, fresh herbs, in season veggies or salad greens & delicious dressings, even adding in amazing protein can lift a salad. Even consider using leftovers from a meal cold grilled or steamed meats or meatballs. You don’t really need a recipe for a great salad but sometimes it’s so good you want to be able to recreate that amazing combo. Here are a few of my favourites in no particular order that I will be continuing to update.
Roast lamb salad (marinade made in the Thermomix) with some roasted veg feta & other salad ingredients.
I used Eloise Emmett’s recipe to pickle my octopus & then serve with either a greek style or green salad – also yummy with a creamy potato salad too.
Guess what? Some salads are better made without the Thermomix you might only make the dressing in the Thermomix – this is a favourite of mine Fennel Salad I love to serve it with confit or steamed salmon. (The recipe is from a great book that includes French style recipes – Lunch in Paris by Elizabeth Bard.)
I’m not normally a fan of coleslaw but even using red cabbage & the fresh apple or pear, red capsicum & some fresh dill & try adding some pecans for extra crunch I prefer my coleslaw dressed with lemon juice & olive oil. Of course it is so easy to make your own mayo in the Thermomix too.- Dani Valent had a peanut butter coleslaw recipe in the In the Mix 2 cookbook.
My take on Mum’s Chicken & Mango Salad – Such a versatile salad great to use up left over steamed chicken breast (after steaming a whole chook) or poaching chicken breasts in the Thermomix. You can use any nuts you like either cashews, macadamia or pistachios. Finely chopped celery for the crunch & fresh element, 1 mango sliced, sliced spring onions. Avocado is delicious in it too. I used cucumber because I had some in the fridge & added fresh parsley & mint leaves. Mum dressed it with 1/2 homemade mayo & half natural yoghurt 1 tsp of curry powder & 1 tabs of tomato relish. I used a honey & seeded mustard vinaigrette to dress it, my sister likes to use an Asian style dressing with soy sauce, fresh ginger & garlic.
I love to make Teressa Cutter’s Massaged Kale Salad in the Thermomix – I stir it on reversed instead of massaging it by hand & then I love to add some Thermomix shredded chicken YUM!!
Warm Sweet Potato Salad or use pink eye potatoes instead either with homemade mayo or serve warm with Thermie made Bearnaise sauce with or without crispy bacon!! Of course you can put it in the fridge & serve it cold too 🙂 (Yes you may have noticed there is a sneaky Brussel Sprout in this one so feel free to add any of you other favourite veggies that are in season I steamed the brussel sprout with the sweet potato.)
I love greek salad but serving it with steamed lamb meatballs really makes it into a special delicious meal that is so easy to prepare 🙂
Nico Moretti’s roasted Cauliflower Salad. You will find the recipe in his Delicious Journeys Cookbook – actually it’s on the front cover too!
The classic beetroot salad from your basic cookbook you can jazz up if you want, serve with feta, pistachios, pomegranate seeds, chickpeas or even tuna. Use any fresh herbs you like.
This was a foodie dream come true, especially for my friend & Chef Eloise Emmett see her blog post here. What a magical spot at Bangor with a glorious view & we say long table – yes it was a looooooong table – It don’t even think the person at the other end of the table would even hear you asking to pass the salt!
We got to help pick the last of the grapes – pinot noir (we found out later the wine won’t be ready till another 3 years from the grapes we picked today)
Matt gave us a lesson in grape picking before we could start – one of the main things was don’t cut yourself, we all managed to get that one right – It was also important not to pick any under ripe grapes at this will effect the wine in a negative way! No pressure at all!!
So what about the food & the menu?The menu featured seafood & local produce of course. We started with mugs os creamy seafood chowder – this was good because it gave a bit more time to take more photos of the food on the table before everyone sat down & ate 🙂 And of course we had to have the Bangor oysters too – They are amazing! I think I sat in the right spot because the people around me either couldn’t eat them or didn’t like oysters!!
One of my favourite Ellie salads – Greek salad with octopus!!
Smoked salmon & potato salad
Of course there was delicious Bangor Wine & we had a Seafood Lasagne too not to mention freshly baked bread & cheese plates.
For dessert we had chocolate profiteroles, apple & rhubarb crumble cake, brownies by Isobel & poached pears with a red wine syrup.
And just like that our magical lunch was over & it was time to pack up! I am so grateful to have been a part of this wonderful day. I left full & happy, what wonderful bunch of people we met while picking grapes & eating a gourmet seafood feast!
I had only been looking forward to this weekend for about 5 months (because it was rescheduled from Nov15) After my busy week at Thermofest I was quite exhausted but still excited to be heading with my camera & iPhone to a fun weekend food styling, with self taught expert stylist & photographer JJ from 84th & 3rd, while eating Ellie‘s delicious food. I stopped at Salamanca Market on the way down to Highcroft to collect a couple of bunches of Lisa Kingston Flowers gorgeous arrangements (My wonderful friend Ulla from Dragonfly Farm grows the proteas for her) Also collected some cucumbers for our special smoothie & a stopped at one of my favourite places Bangor Wine & Oyster Shed for a bottle of their amazing sparkling wine, some fresh oysters & shucking knife – I also grabbed a sneaky coffee 🙂
I arrived at the new location it had ended up being a 1 hour drive from Hobart, from the outside I wondered if I had made a mistake & gone to the wrong address? I later found out was a rustic CWA hall with amazing old tables & retro chairs gorgeous natural light flooding in through the windows, in other words a dream come true. There were 7 of us on the first including Ellie & JJ. Oh and did I mention Ellie brought her Thermomix too!!
So there was a big table set up with lots of props & cloths. A little taste of Ellie’s collection & JJ had brought a few things too. So our first mission; can you make canned soup look good? Answer YES!! We had pumpkin soup, tomato soup & cream of asparagus soup. And Ellie had some fresh baguettes she had made (dough made in the Thermomix of course). We had been all given some Olsson’s Salt in our goodie bags too, so great practice for product placement 😉
I was instantly drawn to the tomato soup & this is what happened!!
This is one of my favourite shots!!
Now it’s time for LUNCH!! (no we didn’t eat the soup!!) When I say time for lunch it means that after about 1/2 of taking lots of pics on our cameras & phones from every angle & every dish we can eat!! Ellie made my favourite octopus salad YUM!!
Vegan Tomato Tart
After lunch we moved onto balls – yes round things that are so popular in so many different flavours but it is hard to make them look good or is it?
We have had this honeycomb for a while so decided to get a last few shots before we ate it 🙂
Now we haven’t eaten for at least an hour or so lets set up for dinner outside with fairy lights – this was a dream of Elli’s for the last workshop in August 15 but alas the weather stopped us, but not today it was just perfect! We brought the table & chairs outside & set the table. Then got ready for the fresh oysters, Ellie shucked then quickly in front of us & cracked opened the sparkling wine from Bangor Oyster Shed.
What an absolutely awesome feast we had potato & hot smoked salmon salad, fennel & pepper berry beef with goats cheese, roast beetroot and hazelnut salad and a marinated shark on an Asian style salad. Check out Ellie’s blog for her photos & recipes!
Day 2: Breakfast & then picnic lunch in a pear orchard, how dreamy!!
I made JJ’s smoothie recipe in the Thermomix – yes I carried the Thermomix on my lap on the way in the car too!! JJ will post her recipe soon for me to share but you get a hint when you look in the bowl!!
JJ made her delicious baked apples & Ellie made my new favourite breakfast French Toast with Salmon rashers & maple syrup – AMAZING!!
And now it’s time to picnic – a short drive away & we are in a magic place, a local pear orchard.
Another delicious scene to shoot, eat & drink 🙂 Feeling so lucky & had such a great time too!
Here is a snapshot of images taken on my iPhone & some behind the scenes shots too!