There has been a lack of vegetable recipes on this site lately, the reason is that we were on holiday in the Czech Republic and while we had access to lots of seasonal, wonderfully ripe fruit from my parents’ garden, other people’s gardens, the woods and the roadside, the situation on the vegetable front was bad. I mean we had to buy vegetables from the supermarket. And they were not great.
I know I am spoiled. I am especially spoiled when it comes to lettuce. I think I have not bought a lettuce in years, eating lots of it during the growing season and then missing it when the season is over (and growing other greens).
I grow lettuce in every garden I have access to:
On my allotment:
In a tub close to our back door
In our community garden:
More often than not, I just separate the leaves, wash them thoroughly and we eat them like that, without any dressing. Because super fresh lettuse is sweet and crunchy and does not need anything.
But sometimes I feel like making a real salad.
This salad is about 180 degrees from eating lettuce as is. It is what I can only describe as gutsy. Radishes, capers, semi-dried tomatoes and spring onions plus the garlic in the dressing make it the opposite of bland.
My husband laughed at me because I started eating the lettuce the minute I took a picture. It was difficult but I managed to share with my family.
Adapted (only slightly) from Plenty: Vibrant Recipes from London’s Ottolenghi
1 large Romaine lettuce
2 spring onions, sliced thinly on a sharp angle
1 bunch radishes (about 20), sliced thinly
100 g semi-dried tomatoes, whole or roughly torn
2 tbsp capers, whole if small or very roughly chopped
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 ½ tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp rape seed oil, pumpkin seed oil, or use more olive oil
salt and pepper
Separate the lettuce leaves and wash them carefully. Dry them in a salad spinner. Keep smaller leaves whole and tear big ones into large pieces. Place the leaves in a large mixing bowl and add onions, radishes and tomatoes.
In a small bowl (or a jam jar) mix together the dressing ingredients and season quite generously. Just before serving pour the dressing over the salad and toss gently. Place on a serving bowl and sprinkle with capers.