Being a private chef, I love all of the travelling I am able to do. This year, I have already visited Scotland, Switzerland, France and the Caribbean. It’s such a tough job, I know! On the contrary, there is no place like home so I was really pleased that I had been asked to cook for a party in nearby Wiltshire.
My job can often involve laying and setting out the table very nicely which, perhaps surprisingly, I enjoy doing! Depending on the occasion, the flower arrangements differ in style. Sometimes they can be stiff and formal or contrastingly rustic and natural. As this was more of a relaxed family gathering, I had the opportunity to pop on my battered Barbour and venture out into the garden to see if there was anything I could forage to decorate the table with.
As I ventured down the path, I found the gardener hard at work, digging up the end of the curly kale that had gone to flower.
“Stop”! I yelped as politely as I could from across the veg patch.
Bright yellow flowers were being dumped and wasted on the wheel barrow, but I had a better idea.
Admittedly, they would not make a great flower display as, although they are beautiful, they emit a cabbage scent which may not go down too well at a party. The flowers, however, would taste absolutely delicious in my ‘Jersey Royal and Toasted Almond Salad, with Fried Sage, Mayonnaise and Curly Kale Flowers’.
– 500 g Jersey Royal Potatoes
– 15 Sage Leaves
– 200ml Sunflower Oil
For the Mayonnaise:
– 2 Free Range Egg Yolks
– Juice from 1/2 a Lemon
– 1 tsp White Wine Vinegar
– 125 ml Olive Oil
– 125 ml Vegetable Oil
– 100 g toasted flaked almonds
– a handful of picked curly kale flowers
Wash them but never peel or over-scrub these tasty potatoes. Cover them in cold, lightly salted water with a few sprigs of mint and bring it to the boil. Turn down the heat and simmer until cooked through (about 15 – 20 mins). Drain and leave to cool.
It is so frustrating to be told something is easy when you’ve had difficulties with it. I know many people avoid making mayonnaise because it tends to split on them. The best piece of advice that I can give to you is to get the beginning stage right because after that, there should be no problems.
Whisk together the egg yolks, lemon juice, and vinegar until pale and thick (at least 4 minutes in a mix, longer by hand).
Only at the stage where the mix has lightened in color and turned into a thick emulsion can you start to slowly pour the oils in.
Once you have added all of the oil, check the seasoning and then cover it and store in the fridge until you’re ready to use it.
Fried Sage Leaves
Heat the sunflower oil in a small frying pan. Once it’s hot, drop in a few sage leaves at a time and fry them until crispy. Remove the sage leaves from the oil and leave them to drain on kitchen paper until you are ready to serve your salad.
Mix together the cold jersey royal potatoes in with the mayonnaise, toasted almonds, fried sage and your freshly picked curly kale flowers. Most importantly, enjoy!
Food Blogs UK say thank you to Phillipa for this mouth-watering salad recipe.
Philippa is a private chef and passionate lover of food, who has kindly contributed this delightful recipe to Food Blogs UK! To read more about her wonderful work and postcard recipes from her travels, please visit www.philippadavis.com or follow her on twitter @phollowphilippa