"It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others." A.Holmes

Friday, October 16, 2009

Jamie Oliver's Cheese & Onion Salad With Dressing

This is our lettuce patch in the garden, the picture was taken in July. My husband has 3 beds of lettuces growing.He plants lettuce in the spring and it is still growing, although scarce and rangy this time of the year. Since I am following Jamie Oliver's wonderful cookbook as it relates to seasons in the garden ( and for those of you who frequent Farmer's Markets this would be the same) I decided to try out this recipe with some of our remaining lettuces. I harvested quite a bit of lettuce and washed and dried each leaf. I did munch on a lot of the lettuces as I was preparing this dish and they are oh, so good all by themselves and without any additions or adornments! My husband was away on business when I made this so I set a little tray for my dinner and added some chicken breast drizzled in *Mary's Cranberry Dressing. ( click* to view recipe).
Cheese and Onion Salad With Creamy Herb Dressing ( EASY!)
  • 8 small shallots, peeled and finely sliced
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • white wine vinegar
  • 1 romaine or cos lettuce ( I used ours from the garden)
  • 1 Boston or Bibb lettuce, outer leaves removed, washed and spun dry, leaves separated ( we actually had some of this lettuce in our garden too)
  • 4 large handfuls of mixed salad leaves ( such as arugula, oak leaf and a little dandelion) washed and spun dry, leaves separated ( picked from our garden)
  • 4 ounces Roquefort cheese., crumbled
  • a good handful of walnuts, toasted and crumbled
  • optional: a small handful of chive or allium flowers
Jamie Oliver introduces this easy recipe by saying ," Have a go at this recipe, even if you don't particularly like onions in salads, as they're quite mild. You can use sweet red onions instead of shallots if you like. And feel free to use any interesting mixed salad leaves. "Place the shallots in a small bowl with a generous pinch of salt and pour over just enough white wine vinegar to cover. You'll pour away the excess salt and vinegar once the onions are pickled, so don't worry if you think it's a bit much! Scrunch everything together with your hands and leave to marinate for at least 10 minutes. To make the dressing you'll need: extra virgin olive oil, 2 Tablespoons Creme Fraiche, 1 Tablespoon red wine vinegar . Mix 4 tablespoons of olive oil with the creme fraiche ( see note below) and the red wine vinegar . Whisk everything together and season to taste. Squeeze the shallots hard with your hands and drain. Place the salad leaves on a plate. From a height , sprinkle over the shallots and the crumbled Roquefort. Scatter over the crumbled walnuts-it's really nice if they're still a bit warm from being toasted. I like to drizzle over the dressing at the table. Finish by throwing some torn up chive or allium flowers if you have them."
This salad was delicious, I might bring it to our potluck and add pasta to it to make it a filling meal all on its' own!
~I have really learned a lot by reading through and following these recipes. I thought I had a pretty good understanding of basic cooking and putting meals together and usually take a look at a recipe that interests me , gather the basic ingredients and proceed on my own, winging it. Since I accepted my husbands' challenge to make one of JAMIE"S recipes every week and blog about it I have had to follow the recipe as precisely as possible, after all , these are HIS recipes. What I have learned is that there are so many subtle things in recipes I never paid attention to ( such as procedures, herbs and flavorings) that completely transform a meal or dish from" O.K. and tasty" to " delicious, interesting and tasty"! Now I know why many of my husband's lovingly prepared meals go beyond the ordinary. Guess there is a good reason to be storing all those herbs, sauces, oils,vinegars, etc, in the cupboards, pantry and refrigerator. NOTE:Creme Fraiche, this is used in a LOT of recipes that originate outside the U.S. We can buy it at Trader Joe's which is not close or convenient to us.I have searched for it in all our local ( local being within 25 miles) supermarkets and have not found it. You can make a substitute for it. Just Google "Substitutes for Creme Fraiche". I would give you the substitute for it here but found several and if you google it yourself you will find the best one for you. Anyone out there feel strongly about the best substitute for it? Let us know, please!


Julie Harward said...

This is kind of like Julie's experience with Julia...only yours is with Jamie's. I have never heard of this man, but your experiment is very cool! The salad looks so divine, nothing beats the taste of fresh out of the garden. I'll bet some cooked chicken breasts would be nummy with the salad also. Thanks for sharing..are you getting as many comments as Julie did in the movie?
Come say hi :D

Anonymous said...

Hi Kathy, I am enjoying your Friday posts very much. The salad seems like it would be delicious, especially with your own fresh ingredients. I hope you have a good weekend. GA is supposed to have its coldest temps thus far - lows in the mid 30's over the weekend.

KathyB. said...

Julie, I can't remember how many comments Julie got, but her movie inspired my husband to suggest this experiment. We loved the movie and intend to buy and re-watch it when it comes out in DVD. I don't think I will be making ALL Jamie's recipes though and his book is well worth buying! He has a show on the Food Network, 'Jamie At Home', and his older show was 'The Naked Chef'.I enjoy him and his show so much I requested his cookbook for my birthday and our daughter and son-in-law gave it to me!

Mildred, that is really cold for Georgia, you might get snow. I was just outside and it is a balmy 60-some degrees outside..we're in for rainstorms the weatherman says.

noble pig said...

This sounds like a heavenly addition to any dinner. Love the shallots and all the different types of lettuce. And the cheese, wow, I'm drooling here!

Mary said...

Hello Kathy. I have been a bit busier than normal recently...trying not to miss my friend's blog posts.

I love the ingredients in this recipe.

Did you find it difficult to cook for yourself? I always do.

I am the type that throws in a little of this and that, no measuring...but I realize that I could learn a lot too. You are blessed to have a husband that has the gift to cook!

God bless, Mary

KathyB. said...

Noble Pig, the cheese is what tempted me to make this and it is yummy.

Mary, I do find it difficult to cook for myself. I only did this because I made a commitment to post a recipe every Friday, and since I had to I also set a small table for myself and added a champagne-cranberry juice drink with cranberries floating in it for eye-appeal. Usually when I am alone I eat left-overs or Ramen. Not especially inspiring or delicious, but easy because if there is nothing in the fridge I tend to forget to eat.

Susie said...

This is another delicious sounding recipe Kathy. I love to eat salads with lots of different types of things in them. I don't mind onions at all.

easy recipes said...

I love to eat vegetables from my garden, it taste the best.

Anonymous said...

Nice pictures and sounds like a yummy recipe!



Mary said...

I love JO and this recipe sounds wonderful. Thanks for sharing it with us.

Andrea said...

Sounds so absolutely delicious! I haven't been cooking much lately, but I certainly need try this recipe! My husband and I love salads!

Your blog is very beautiful. I saw your title while on Deanna's, an it grabbed my attention. I am not disappointed in the least. It is so full of family comfort and beauty.

May God bless you.


Vickie said...

Kathy that salad not only looks wonderful and tasty, but it's nice to look at, too, with all the different textures and colors. Good job! I know those home grown lettuces are so tasty - I had some back in the spring and I'm going to do some more next year. Maybe even diversify - I got mine in the ground a little late and they bolted rather quickly. Of course, it IS hot in Texas.

That's a neat experiment you're doing each week. I wish I had more time to try new stuff on my family!

Eggs In My Pocket / Yesteryear Embroideries said...

You reming me of the Julie/Julia project and I just love it! The lettuce garden is so lovely! And the salad looks wonderful. Thanks for sharing! blessings,Kathleen

KathyB. said...

Susie,do you grow a lot of salad greens in your garden?

Easy Recipes, the veggies from the garden do taste the best and I think the slugs around here agree! Really though, Western WA is a good place for lettuce crops and we keep it growing from spring to fall.

Amy ( goatpod) Thank-you!

Mary, I seem to be cooking and baking my way through your recipes too.Thank-YOU!

Andrea, I consider your comment a high compliment, thank-you very much!

Vickie, I just read your account of visiting your son in Nashville, I can see why you don't have any extra time.

Kathleen, thank-you very much.

Jennifer said...

Oh I bet that does taste as good as it looks! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Your salad looks grand, wish I had some right here, right now! The photos to the side are wonderful, love seeing your grands. Hope it's a wonderful week for you and yours.

Farm Chick Paula said...

Mmmm that sounds wonderful!!!

Daisy said...

I like your idea of adding pasta to this salad, Kathy. I've been enjoying hearing about these recipes you are sharing.