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Thursday, 11 July 2013

Food: summer salads and perfect poached eggs

Now that summer is well and truly here in England, I can't resist knocking up a quick salad most nights for dinner. Not only are they incredibly nutritious, they're also so easy and tasty.

I wrote a post here about the formula for making an easy, tasty salad every time, but I just wanted to share with you the one I ate last night.

Feeds 2

2 nectarines
salad leaves e.g. water cress, rocket, baby spinach, lambs lettuce
2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped
parmesan - use a potato peeler to make shavings
handful of green beans
2 eggs

simple dressing: 1 tbsp white wine vinegar, 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. For my actual salad, I just used some balsamic glaze which you can buy from any supermarket.

1. Add the green beans to a pan of boiling water, boil for 4 minutes. Drain and run immediately under cold water. Cut into inch long lengths.
2. Add the salad leaves to a plate together with the parmesan shavings and green beans.
3. Remove the stone and slice the nectarines. Caramelise for a couple of minutes in a hot frying pan.
4. Poach the eggs according to the instructions below.

Although this salad is very filling by itself, I added some avocado and bacon toasts on the side using a recipe from the amazing Londoner blog.

To make enough toasts for 2:

4 thick slices from a crusty loaf
1 ripe avocado
1/2 lemon
5 cherry tomatoes, chopped
1 clove of garlic, halved
4 rashes of streaky bacon

1. Mash the avocado with the lemon juice and a little salt. Combine with the tomatoes.
2. Grill the bacon on a medium heat until nice and crispy
3. Toast the bread and brush each side with the garlic clove.
3. Top the toast with the avocado, tomato and bacon.

Today, for lunch, I fancied more poached eggs. I added a recipe for perfect poached eggs ages ago, but in case you missed it, here it is again. I promise it works every time!


Firstly, you need incredibly fresh eggs. If your eggs are older than 4 days, you'll need to add a teaspoon of white wine vinegar to your pan. Don't over do the vinegar - there's nothing worse than a vinegary tasting egg and it makes the egg white rubbery. The vinegar, incidentally, helps keeps the white together. Only poach a maximum of two eggs at once - any more becomes difficult to handle. Use a large frying pan filled with boiling water. Have the eggs preprepared by cracking each into an individual cup. Create a vortex in the water by stirring quickly with a spoon. Now add each egg to the pan on opposite sides. Place a lid on the frying pan and boil for 3 minutes. And voila perfect poached eggs - a lovely runny yolk, and firm white.

I  was still hungry after my eggs so I also had my first Coyo yoghurt from Wholefoods (£1.99). Pretty expensive so it'll just have to be an occasional treat.

How do you get on with poach eggs? What's your favourite salad recipe?

1 comment:

  1. That salad looks delicious! Lately salads are all I want to eat--it is so hot here!