Spring Salads

I always feel a bit of a fraud posting salad recipes as most of us conjure up salads from what we have in the fridge most of the time. Well, it makes sense.  But sometimes there are some really tasty combinations of ingredients just work so well together, it’s worth searching them out to make them specially.

The first one was inspired by a conversation with my parents at Christmas. We were eating some particularly good smoked salmon and they were reminiscing about their work in London in the 1970s and 1980s when they used to run some very funky nightclubs. I was the envy of the class having a young mum who wore silver platform boots and Green Mary Quant nail varnish to go to work but in typical fashion always wanted to be round visiting best pal Ria’s mum who baked cakes. There’s no pleasing young folk, as I am sure many of you will agree!

Their memory was of Ella Fitzgerald (oh yes, I’m shamelessly name dropping here) asking for English mustard to go with her smoked salmon, so of course we got out the mustard and I have to say, Ella certainly knew what she was asking for!

Smoked Salmon Salad (1)

Asparagus and Smoked Salmon Salad with a Mustard Mayonnaise

(Quantities are up to you, we ate this as a starter between 2)

  • Rocket leaves, asparagus spears (blanch the chopped stems first for a few minutes then add the tips for the last minute or so) slices of smoked salmon arranged to your liking on one of your favourite plates.
  • Drizzle a little olive oil over and a squeeze of lemon juice, a sprinkle of salt and a few grinds of black pepper.
  • Serve with a dipping mayonnaise (homemade or otherwise) mixed in a ratio of about 5:1 with English mustard. Put on your favourite Disco collection cd and get on down.

If you enjoy asparagus, try this recipe out and see what you think.

Back in Spain here it’s orange season and we can’t get enough of them. They’re being sold at outrageously cheap prices for massive bags of them so we’re juicing them, eating them au naturel and in fruit salads and savoury salads. Here’s a favourite which we serve with grilled pork – the flavour of the sweet and sour oranges, the sharp onion and the creamy avocado contrast really well with the richness of the meat.

Orange & Avocado Salad (4)

Orange and Avocado Salad

  • Per person a peeled and chopped orange, half a peeled and chopped avocado, some thinly sliced sweet onion and a sprinkle of finely chopped parsley,
  • Sprinkle some coarse sea salt over and a drizzle of olive oil. If the oranges are particularly sweet squeeze over a little lemon juice and finish with a splash of balsamic vinegar. I used a Balsamic vinegar reduction which is not only pretty to look at as you can get all cheffy with it, it also has a very delicious intense flavour.

Go on, Spring into Spring and start to throw off those warming winter hotpots and give your favourite salads a chance again!


50 thoughts on “Spring Salads

  1. How cool am I – I know somebody who’s folks knew Ella Fitzgerald. Awesome! 🙂
    Absolutely love both your salads. SCRUMPTIOUS!
    Have a beautiful weekend Tanya.
    🙂 Mandy xo

    1. Well, “knowing” might be pushing it a bit, but I know they had a pretty amazing time back then! Glad you liked the salads, although for you, it’s time for more warming dishes. Have a great weekend too!

  2. Just wonderful, I am dying for salads! and name drop away we LOVE it! Did you score the silver platform shoes? Maybe your Mum still has them.. c

    1. Glad you liked the salads! Sadly, although we were the same size for clothes, my mum wore about 3 sixes bigger than me in shoes so whilst I could stagger round in her bedroom (getting told off in case I turned an ankle and broke the heels!) I could never wear her shoes L

  3. Look, you might be back up the mountain and enjoying salads, oranges and sunshine, but the rest of us back here may still need the hotpot etc.

  4. That’s true, who hasn’t invented a new salade , gathering the fridge leftovers ?…….
    But your “creations”stand alone!
    Ciao, Tania!

      1. I know “MUUUUM could you pulEEZE stay in the car when you come and pick us up and DON’T TALK TO MY FRIENDS!” 😉

  5. So, you inherited some of this “cool” from your folks, I see! What a great story and I’m now going to have to try English mustard with smoked salmon… which I happen to have in the pantry. Oranges and avocado is one of my fave combos. I like to add some kalamata olives to mine, just for good measure. Lovely salads, Tanya.

  6. Love the salads, love the mention of the ‘funky nightclubs’ 🙂 ! OMG ~ that was my main ‘time’ spent in London and I probably have been to some of theirs!! Nah, the boots and the varnish I would have envied but not been allowed!! Lucky you!!!!!!

  7. What a lovely memory that inspired this recipe! We love smoked salmon, and mustard is a great match, so I’m trying this. My auntie used to make an orange and onion salad for New Year’s eve (summer in Argentina) that the family youngest didn’t appreciate, but my taste improved and widened with age and just the other day I asked her to e-mail me the recipe! Avocado seems like a great idea to make it even better! 🙂

  8. Beautiful. I love salads, there can never be too many salad recipes to add to the collection! It’s autumn over here now but I want to try both of these lovely combinations to add to my repertoire. Yum xx

  9. I’m a salad girl and think one should be part of an evening meal if possible. Both of your salads would be very poplar in our home.

  10. Mustard mayo and salmon sounds like a match made in heaven with smoked salmon. You’re right about your mum being the trendy parent of the class – my mum was always in her pinny or sometimes her housecoat!! x

  11. Ella is one heckuva name to drop, Tanya. I had a few pairs of shoes that may have rivaled your Mum’s. Walking about wasn’t bad but going up stairs was another thing completely. 🙂
    I’d gladly sit down to either of these salads. Asparagus and smoked salmon work so well together. Even so, I love seeing orange in salads. They brighten up the salad in every way possible.

    1. Well, if you’re going to drop a name, you might as well make it a good one 😉 Can’t wait until the day arrives where we finally get to sit down over a bottle of wine (or two) and talk (and that day will come, I know it!). Can you imagine the things we’d have to talk about!

  12. I’m particularly loving the idea of orange and avocado. I’ve just used up the last of the oranges for hot cross buns (well I ate the orange after zesting it!) so will have to save this taste combo until next orange proximity alert. Yum.

  13. Yes!! Let’s spring into spring!! I made a salad this evening, but not as lovely as yours:) We have a tiny bit of spring in the air, plus 10 today and sun! It’s not much but we’ll take it!

I love to hear what you think, please leave me a comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s