Bryony's Blog

Late summer salad nosebag


This was a dish I hurriedly knocked up after having been out all morning. No need to be precise about ingredients - it's up to you and how many you are feeding. You will need (for one person) as a main course:

1 freshly picked corn on the cob
3-4 rashers of smoked pancetta
cupful of bulb fennel, finely sliced
cupful of peeled and chopped cucumber
1 small red onion, peeled and chopped
chopped fresh herbs if you wish - or have any to hand (optional)
1 little gem lettuce
oil, vinegar, juice of half a lemon, salt and pepper, and a dash of wine vinegar

Before you pick you corn (if you are lucky enough to grow it) put on the kettle. Walk to the veg plot, pick your cob and RUN back to the kitchen! The quicker you are, the sweeter and more tender the corn. If you aren't lucky enough to grow them yourself, try and buy the best quality on offer. Cook in UNSALTED boiling water for five or six minutes, take off the heat and drain, cool immediately in cold running water.
Using a sharp knife, hold the cob upright and run the blade down the cob, thus removing the kernels.

Heat a pan and cook the pancetta until crispy. Remove from heat and roughly chop.

Wash and tear the lettuce into a bowl.

Wash and thinly slice the fennel and add to the above

Peel and chop the onion and cucumber and add.

Scatter the (probably still warm) chopped pancetta and corn kernels over the salad and pour on your vinaigrette dressing. You can always bulk this salad with some pumpkin or sunflower seeds and chopped walnuts. Maybe even a hard boiled egg… or some sardines or tuna in oil… or prawns. There is no limit, so it's over to you!

Serve at once and enjoy!

PS There wasn't time to take a photograph - I ate it straight away! B