Tomato and Avocado Salad with Lemon Basil Vinaigrette (4)

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Growing up in England in the 60’s and 70’s the idea of a salad was a far cry from the salads of of today. The English salad was a handy dish because it was cold. It was sometimes served on Sunday evenings after the woman of the house had slaved over preparing Sunday lunch for the family often when the man of the house decided a few pints at the local pub was in order and he returned home only in time to take his place at the head of the table and demonstrate his carving skills. On Sunday evening a no-fuss meal of salad might be provided and of course it was a good way of using up the cold, left-over meat from lunch. A salad could also be left for the man of the house to eat if his wife had to be out in the evening. Said man didn’t have to heatĀ  anything up as he was left a plate with some lettuce and slices of tomato, hard-boiled egg, cucumber and beetroot from a jar and a couple of slices of cold meat. The dressing was Heinz Salad Cream – still to be found today and, indeed, when there was talk of this product being discontinued a nostalgic furore ensued – today Heinz is still making Salad Cream!

When I came across mention of this vinaigrette the combination of flavors instantly appealed and the dressing didn’t let me down when I tossed tomato slices and chunks of avocado in it.

2 x beef tomatoes – sliced and each slice cut into quarters

1 x avocado – diced

For the dressing:

3 tbsp. olive oil seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper

Juice and zest of 1/2 a lemon

1 largish garlic clove – grated

1 tbsp. of chopped basil

Place the dressing ingredients in a largish bowl and whisk together so that they emulsify.

Add tomatoes and avocado and toss well together.

 

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Salmon Poached with Garlic, Shallot, Lemon, Parsley and White Wine (4)

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Very simple to prepare and very tasty to eat served alongside roasted asparagus and new potatoes. It is a light healthy dish and dinner party worthy.

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees

4 x salmon fillets

1 cloves of garlic – grated

1 shallot – finely chopped

1 tbsp. olive oil

1/4 cup dry white wine

Juice of half a lemon

1 tbsp. parsley – finely chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place a piece of aluminum foil (large enough to wrap the pieces of salmon in) in a roasting tinĀ  and pop the salmon fillets on top.

Share the garlic and shallot equally between the salmon pieces.

Slowly drizzle the salmon slices with the oil and, again slowly, pour over the white wine and lemon juice.

Finally, sprinkle with parsley and salt and pepper.

Cook in oven for 20 minutes or so, depending on how you like your salmon cooked.