This is a lovely salad to pair with heavily flavoured dishes and is fun to prepare – try not to gobble all the strawberries first!
Herby vinaigrette dressing
What to do:
- Chop off the beetroot leaves, keeping any small leaves. Scrub the beets and place them whole into the medium saucepan and fill with cold water. Set to boil for about 20 minutes.
- Fill up the 2 big bowls with cold water & wash the salad leaves, gently dunking them a handful at a time into the water, then pulling out to see if any dirt is left behind. Repeat in fresh water until no dirt remains. Spin the leaves dry and then wipe the bowls dry.
- Wash the flowers separately and drain on a piece of paper towel. Keep the flowers reserved, picking off the petals to use.
- Wash and spin dry the herbs, and pick off the leaves. Wash and hull the strawberries and slice.
- Lay out the tea towel and line it with kitchen paper. Spread the salad leaves over the paper and roll the whole lot up like a log. Keep the rolled parcel of leaves in the fridge until needed.
- When the beetroot are tender, drain them and place under running cold water until cool. Slip the skins off with your fingers and slice up.
To make the dressing:
- Peel the garlic clove and put it in the mortar with a large pinch of salt. Pound to a paste.
- Juice the lemon and add the juice to the mortar (without the pips) then stir the lot with the teaspoon and scrape it into a large bowl.
- Stir in the olive oil and grind a little pepper, then whisk the dressing lightly. Add the herbs, chopping any large leaves in the mezzaluna if needed. Add to the dressing in the large bowl.
- Unwrap the parcel of salad leaves & tip them into the bowl with the flower petals, herbs, strawberries, beetroot and the dressing. Gently turn the leaves in the dressing using your hands or tongs.
- Transfer the salad to the serving bowls and serve immediately with little tongs.