Saturday 29 September 2012

September 29 - A neat trick for salads

Next time you're making a fresh veggie salad for a crowd, try this... take some red onion and slice very thinly. Place the fresh onion slices into a bowl and add fresh lemon juice. There should be enough juice for the onion to completely soak in. Put in the fridge and leave it to marinate anywhere from four hours to overnight. Both the juice and the onions will turn completely pink. The acid in the lemon juice mellows the heat from the onion and replaces it with a fresh, lemony flavour. 

Take the lemon-marinated onions and add them to your salad. Whatever other veggies you choose are entirely up to you. Then, with the remaining pink lemon juice, add three times as much extra virgin olive oil (or pumpkin seed oil if you can find it) and whisk. Season to your liking. There's your dressing!

You could even add a small spoonful of a nice Dijon mustard to the pink lemon juice and whisk it into a solution. Then slowly add all the olive oil in a steady stream while whisking constantly. The mustard will add another dimension of flavour and keep the bits of oil and acid "suspended" and emulsified. 

This is really easy and makes a boring, old salad really interesting. Sorry for the lack of amounts. That depends entirely on how big your servings of salad will be and/or how many people you're feeding. Not to mention how many onions you want in the salad (remember, they don't taste overwhelmingly oniony so you can get away with much more than usual). I recommend that you play around with this basic method until you can do it just to your liking.

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