One of my passions is family history and through my research I have connected with many wonderful people and shared photos and stories and details relating to our common ancestors.
One line of research brought me in contact with Aurore and Fernand and their little part of south-west France: Villebrumier. They have welcomed us into their home and we have shared many wonderful meals at their table. We love their passion for food and wine and the tradition of long lunches with seven courses.
In Australia we tend to eat to fill our bodies and there is little formality surrounding meals. We eat to live. For the French and the Catalans and the Italians, food is an integral part of the seasons, food is entwined with traditions and food is meant to be talked about and savoured. Europeans live to eat.
3 hard boiled eggs, halved
1 tin aspargus spears, drained
handful of black olives, pitted
1/2 punnet cherry or grape or small heirloom tomatoes, halved
salt and pepper to taste
oil and vinegar to taste
Plate, season and serve.
Before you think that my teenager actually eats salads, I must own up: I make salads because I know my son will eat possibly one ingredient in the bowl and I hope one day he might venture out and actually eat the green and red things on the plate as well.
I do know that in a push, when there is nothing else to eat, KJ will eat salad greens, but they are definitely not his first preference.
He does like haloumi so here are a couple of his liked haloumi recipes:
Pan Fried Haloumi with Lemon, Garlic and Thyme
2 x 180 g pkts haloumi, drained
1 tablespoon olive oil
Zest from 1 lemon (use a vegetable peeler)
2 garlic cloves, sliced
6 sprigs fresh thyme
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Serve with lemon wedges and rustic gluten free bread
Cut haloumi into 12 rectangular pieces.
Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Cook the lemon zest, garlic and thyme stirring for 2 minutes to develop the flavours.
Add the haloumi to the pan and cook for 2 minutes each side or until golden.
Drizzle with lemon juice and transfer to a large serving plate.
Season with pepper and serve immediately with sliced bread and lemon wedges.
Haloumi and Pomegranate Salad
Haloumi cheese (pan fry sliced haloumi)
Dressing: 2 tabs honey, 2 tabs lemon, 2 tabs olive oil, 1 tabs oregano leaves chopped, sea salt flakes and pepper. Whisk in bowl and drizzle over salad.
Heirloom Tomato and Haloumi Salad
140 ml olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tablespoons shiraz vinegar or red wine vinegar
50 g unsalted butter, 2 garlic cloves, crushed and 4 sliced and cubed gluten free multigrain bread (to make croutons or use Glutino Bagel Chips)
250 g haloumi, sliced, pan fried
500 g mixed heirloom tomatoes sliced (or use a colourful variety of tomatoes)
1 cup rocket, baby spinach and basil leaves
Whisk 1/3 cup oil, garlic and vinegar together in a bowl, season and set aside.
To make croutons, heat 2 tabs oil and butter in a frypan over medium heat. Cooked bread for 4 minutes until crips. Add garlic and remaining 1 tabs oil and cook for 1 – 2 minutes. Drain on paper towel. Cool.
In a serving bowl or platter, combine croutons, dressing and remaining ingredients.
(Delicious Dec 14/Jan 15)
One of my mother’s recipes, this summer salad is a winner for its simplicity and taste.
When the day is hot and I am looking for an alternative to a lettuce salad, then this is the salad I turn to.
Italian Pea Salad
1 tin canned peas
1/4 red onion, diced finely
2 – 3 Roma tomatoes diced or a handful of cherry tomatoes halved
Assemble peas, onion and tomatoes in a bowl and lightly toss.
Season with salt, pepper, olive oil and balsamic vinegar.