Monday, 24 September 2012

A fresh herb salad

Rather than moan on about the weather, the fact that we lost the dog AGAIN yesterday (I was going to post about Dogsearch Soup, but there’s only so much mileage you can get out of a joke, really, isn’t there...), or anything else, I am thinking back to the lovely meal we had on Friday evening.  Bloody Mary Mussels from Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals. 

One of the things that made it so gorgeous was this herby salad that we ate with it. Often, if I serve salad with a meal, I don’t really think about what leaves are going in to it – it’s just salad...right? We usually have a couple of varieties of lettuce in the garden during the summer along with some rocket, and that does for us. And sure, a salad like that would have been fine with this meal, but the salad suggested by Jamie was a revelation in t he context of the meal as a whole. It included celery, which can sometimes be a little ‘crunchy’ – I wouldn’t normally include it in a salad with leaves – if I do use it like that, I tend to put it with apple and walnuts in a kind of Waldorf salad type thing – but using the leaves set off the celery in the sauce. The flavours of the dill and tarragon really brought out the flavours in main dish too.

I didn’t quite follow Jamie’s mix of leaves and herbs – I used a mixed salad bag rather than just rocket, because I really LOVE watercress, and I didn’t use the mint because I was really dubious about it with the other flavours, but it was so delicious that I couldn’t not pop it up here to share. I think it would be lovely with any fish really, and chicken.

A lovely herb salad

3 large tomatoes
Leaves picked from the heart of a head of celery
1 bag of watercress, rocket & spinach leaves
Small bunch each of dill, tarragon and basil (you need 5 sprigs of each so if you are buying, you don’t need much)
Good olive oil, juice of ½ a lemon, balsamic vinegar and freshly ground salt & pepper

Chop the tomatoes and scatter on a serving dish with the delicate leaves form the celery heart if using. Season and drizzle over some olive oil, a little balsamic vinegar and the lemon juice. Add the leaves from 5 sprigs each of the herbs and salad leaves. Add a little more olive oil and vinegar if you think it needs it, toss together and serve.

I’m linking up with Herbs on a Saturday  hosted by Karen at Lavender & Lovage – the use of the herbs in this dish made a brilliantly fresh and simple salad that went so well with the dish it was meant to accompany.


  1. A lovely healthy salad, makes a perfect lunch or light starter x

  2. I love herb salads, especially with dill and cilantro!

  3. LOVELY salad Sally and I am like you, I tend to serve salad with every meal, so I have bookmarked this! Please keep this under your hat until I announce it later today in the round up, but my daughter, who was the mystery judge this month, thought your salad was so fresh and filled with herbs, that she picked you as winner for the Herbs (River Cottage Handbook) book, as she thought that it was simple but elegant! Please email me your address, so I can send it to you! Karen

    1. Thank you Karen, so pleased you liked it, and even more pleased o win the River Cottage Herb handbook. I have emailed you my address - do let me know if you haven't received it


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