Simple feast for 10 – it’s not ‘Rocket’ Science…

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I’m in the midst of a theme of wanting to eat more veg, as a bit of carb junky I need this and the early summer is a great opportunity to do that.

As part of a lunch on Sunday, we were really keen to spend time chatting to our friends and not slaving in the kitchen so  we did a few different platters. This makes a change and takes away a bit of an issue in terms of making exact portions – it allows me to cater to a range of dietary requirements, as people can just help themselves. It also means we used some creativity and prep but also a few cheats for speed.

We got hold of some beautiful Scottish salmon, poached it lightly with a bouquet garni, a little onion and some pepper corns. Once ‘just’ cooked so as to be a deeper pink still in the centre we set it aside to cool.

Next we made the dressing which is 2 tablespoons of mayo let down to a pouring consistency with chicken stock ( veg stock if you are not meat eaters). a tablespoon of freshly chopped dill, and sea salt.

Next we prepared the salad vegetables, the choice is yours. We used, little gem lettuces, quartered and lightly griddled for colour and caramelisation, ribbons of cucumber done with a peeler, batons of salad onions, slivers of radish for a peppery crunch.  Finally we took the skin off the poached salmon and flaked it into large pieces, be careful not to end up with tiny crumbles, moist pieces are better for this. The skin of the salmon outer side down was placed in a frying pan over a medium heat and cook until it is crisp and golden.  The veggies and salmon were laid out on a large serving platter, drizzled  with the dressing, and then garnished with the salmon skin crisps.

The variety created and attractive feast. We served some spicy chickpeas, a couple of cans drained rinsed and thrown together with some red onion softened in harissa, lemon juice and olive oil. We added some smoked paprika, black pepper and a small jar of those lovely roasted peppers you can buy in the supermarket – simply cut into strips. Next we added some small tomatoes quartered.  The peas were turned through in the dressing and served in a pretty dish, just as well warm or cold….

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We took half a small jar of Belazu Tomato and smoked paprika paste and mixed with butter. Fed the butter mixture under the skin of the chicken and smothered the outside with the remainder. Next we roasted the chicken and allowed it to rest in it’s juices before pulling to pieces. Finally we poured the liquid from the roast over the pulled chicken.

In a large bowl we put a mix of rocket and watercress which we lightly dressed with a honey, olive oil and lemon juice vinaigrette. Nest we turned the leaves over in the dressing and placed onto a  serving plate.  Scattering the greens with sunblush tomatoes and the torn chicken, and finished with some lovely large crunchy croutons and garnish.

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We added a tray of roast spuds, some decent bread and a cheats dessert of store bought brownies cut into bite sized pieces with some early summer English strawberries.IMG_0405

Lunch for ten, pretty much done before anyone arrived, so simple and so tasty.

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