Winter salad with poached eggs and roasted bits

We tend to veer towards slow-braised soups and stews in the winter, but I also love warm salads, blending crisp and green with warm and comforting, all in the one bowl…

Fresh from the garden: salad leaves, eggs, lemon, parsley, marjoram, thyme, coriander, chives
Recipe source: Melissa
Serves: 6 or 24 at home


  • Mixing bowls
  • Colander
  • Paper towel, tea towel
  • Chopping boards & knives
  • Measures:1/3 cup, tablespoon
  • 2 large baking trays
  • 2 salad spinners
  • Mortar & pestle
  • Citrus juicer
  • Mezzaluna
  • Whisk, tongs
  • Medium frying pan
  • Slotted spoon
  • Serving bowls



  • A handful Brussels sprouts leaves
  • A handful cauliflower florets
  • A big bunch salad leaves: mache, mizuna, rocket, lettuce
  • A large handful of herbs
  • A few garnishing flowers
  • 4 eggs
  • Ground coriander and cumin

Herby vinaigrette dressing

  • 1 clove garlic
  • Flaked salt & black pepper
  • 1 lemon
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • A small handful mixed herbs: parsley, marjoram, thyme, coriander, chives

What to do:

  • Preheat the oven the 180C.Wash the Brussels sprout leaves and cauliflower in a bowl of cold water, refilling if needed. Drain and pat dry with paper towel. Strip the leaves from the stalks and cut into ribbons. Cut the cauli into smaller florets. Turn the cauliflower into a clean dry bowl and sprinkle over a tablespoon of olive oil, a sprinkle of salt, ground coriander and ground cumin and mix to combine. Place on the baking tray and then add the Brussels sprout leaves, add another tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle of salt etc. to the bowl. Lay the leaves out on a separate baking tray.
  • Roast the cauliflower for 20 minutes, then slide the tray of Brussels sprout leaves into the oven and roast for a further 5 to 10 minutes, removing when crispy.
  • Fill up 2 big bowls with cold water & wash the salad leaves in several changes of water. Spin dry and wipe the bowls dry. 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.
  • Fill up a medium bowl with water and wash the herbs and small garnishing leaves. Spin dry and pick leaves, discarding stalks into compost. Pick the petals from the flowers and reserve in a small bowl with the garnishing leaves. Chop the herbs finely and keep separate in their own small bowl.
  • 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 pips) then stir the lot with a teaspoon and scrape it into a clean bowl. Stir in the oil and grind some pepper, then whisk the dressing lightly. Wash and spin dry the herbs, pick off the leaves and chop finely in the mezzaluna. Add to the dressing.
  • Meanwhile, to poach eggs, fill the medium sized frying pan with water and bring to a simmer. Carefully crack each egg into its own small bowl without breaking it and then carefully slide into the water. Let the pan sit for 4 minutes on the barest simmer until done.
  • Carefully remove oven tray of veggies with oven mitts and leave to cool for a few minutes.
  • Unwrap the parcel of salad leaves & tip them into the bowl with the herbs and the dressing. Add in the roasted cauliflower & sprout leaves and gently turn the leaves in the dressing using a clean hand or tongs.
  • Pile up the dressed leaves into the serving bowls, carefully drain an egg using a slotted spoon and place in the centre of each bowl of salad with garnishing petals or leaves and serve immediately.

Notes: What else could you add to a warm winter salad? What is the best way of using a mortar and pestle? What does ground coriander smell like? How is it made?

Categories: Kitchen Garden, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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