Today has just been a bit surreal and I’m feeling a little weirded out. Today I walked past the amazing Molly Wizenberg of Orangette fame! It’s not often you happen to pop out for a walk and a baguette and bump into someone you totally admire/kinda want to be on a side street a mere two minutes from your home. It was very exciting but all I could muster was a smile and crimson cheeks. No words would come out but in a way I’m glad. I don’t think I would have been able to talk much sense. The boyfriend who was completely oblivious as to who had just pasted us thought I had experienced a small stroke due to my ever-reddening face. He proceeded to tease my blushing throughout the day. Charming.
I’m not entirely sure why I felt such a strong reaction. I think it may have been because I had just walked passed a person who’s blog posts have touched and moved me, who’s photos have inspired me and who’s humanity has humbled me. The amazing thing was she looked so down to earth and friendly. We were almost in matching outfits for Pete’s sake. We were just two girls, out with friends, taking a walk in the New Town. I guess, maybe in that moment, I felt my aspirations were more achievable. Maybe given enough time I could try to be as creative as her? Maybe given enough effort.
On a completely unrelated note I’ve wanted to share this recipe for chef’s salad for a week or two now. I had it as a starter for our anniversary meal and it was perfectly balanced, wonderfully simple and relied on awesome ingredients. It is a recipe just up my street, just like Molly!
Chef’s Salad – serves 2
1 echalion shallot – very finely cut
50ml vegetable oil
300g new potatoes
100g smoked bacon lardons
100g comte – cut into 2cm by 1cm (ish) cubes
One head of little gem – cut into 2-3cm slices
50g mixed salad leaves – herby, flavourful leaves work best
2 eggs at room temperature
5 dsp extra virgin olive oil
1 dsp white wine vinegar
1 dsp dijon mustard
salt and pepper
oil for frying
Add the shallot to the vegetable oil with 1tsp of salt, stir firmly and leave to stand.
Add the potatoes to a pan of salted, boiling water and leave to cook over a moderately high heat.
Fry off the lardons over a high heat until very crispy. Set aside on kitchen towel until later.
Add the eggs to a pan of warm water and bring up to the boil, cook for 6 minutes, drain and leave to stand in cold water until later.
Slice the cooked new potatoes and add them to the pan used to cook the lardons, season well and cook until the edges are crispy then set aside.
In a jam jar, add the extra virgin olive oil, white wine vinegar, dijon mustard and seasoning to taste, shake well.
Remove the shallots from the vegetable oil and add them to a large bowl with the sliced little gem, salad leaves, lardons, comte and fried potato slices.
Add the salad dressing to this bowl and mix though.
Peel the eggs and arrange on top.