Sitting in a cafe in St Remy, Provence, one afternoon, dappled late summer sunlight on the old stone walls, I discovered a beautiful light salad that was so tasty and scrumptious that i want to share it with you. It is the perfect Provence Summer Salad.
When i reflect on eating this delicious leafy meal, it was the subtleness of the herbs combined with the most beautiful olive oil. Shallots melded with the pine nuts the crusty bread washed down with a light wine and mineral water.
Provence Summer Salad
Three large handfuls to create a mesclun salad mix – rocket, English spinach, arugula, red chard for example
Table spoon of pine nuts
Handful of topped and tailed French beans
Sprinkle of fennel and thyme
About 12 vine ripened or buffalo tomatoes cut in half, sprinkled with salt
Shaved parmesan cheese
1/3 cup virgin fragrant good quality olive oil
Pinch of salt crystals
Heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius, place tomatoes and shallots together (not mixed) in a baking tray, sprinkle with oil and place in oven. Reduce heat to 100 degrees Celsius and bake for about 30 minutes.
Heat a saucepan of water. Wash and trim French beans, add to boiling water. Blanche for about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and wash in cold water to keep the beans firm.
Wash lettuces, shake off excess water.
Remove the tomatoes and shallots. Add the pine nuts to the baking tray and bake for about five to seven minutes.
Mix all of the ingredients together including the herbs.
Drizzle over the olive oil, squeeze over a little lemon. Add parmesan, season with salt and pepper if desired.
Add a crusty baguette or crusty bread, wine or mineral water.
Do you have a favourite summer salad recipe you would like to share? Please feel free to post in comments.