How far away from your house can you go in the current lockdown before incurring a fine? Last Sunday we cancelled our walk in Kew Gardens because we could not justify the drive, although we are members and the gardens are open. This week there was a piece of entertaining news when a man was fined £200 for driving 14 miles to play Pokémon Go in a different town.
Mr Gochugaru loves his Pokémon but knows better than to wander outside of our immediate area. On my part I rely on supermarket home deliveries as the government advice is to Stay At Home.
The problem with shopping for groceries online is that by the time the delivery arrives 10 days later (there is a struggle to place orders and limited slots) I have largely forgotten what it was that I had intended to cook with the vegetables I ordered.
So I looked at the mushrooms and radishes quite intently and thought it would be best to try making a salad. Normally I would make Mushroom Soup and slice the radishes into a mixed salad.
The salad is very easy to make. Although there are several parts to it, they are prepared simultaneously: the mushrooms and almonds go in the oven whilst the the radishes are pickling, and you slice the celery, spring onions and herbs in the meantime. Because the radishes are pickled and the mushrooms are roasted in oil, there is no need to even make a dressing to coat the salad. The salad is served at room temperature so you could prepare the separate elements in advance. It could not be simpler.
For the Salad:
200 g radishes, sliced
100 g rice vinegar
40 g water
35 ml unrefined caster sugar
350 g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
3 large cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ teaspoon salt
50 g whole almonds, toasted then roughly chopped
2 stalks spring onion
2 stalks celery
4 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped
2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, chopped
How to Make:
Start by pickling the radishes. Place the rice vinegar, water and sugar in a small pan and heat gently until warm. Pour over the sliced radishes and leave to pickle until the salad is ready to assemble.
Place the mushrooms in small a roasting pan. Add the oil, garlic and salt and roast for 20 minutes in a hot oven (mine was at 230 C as I was also baking bread). The idea is to let the mushrooms lose most of its water to intensify the flavour.
When the mushrooms have finished cooking, remove them from the oven. Switch off the heat and place the almonds in the oven to toast for 5 minutes as the oven is cooling down. This is all you need as nuts are oily and burn easily.
Slice the celery and spring onions very thinly on the diagonal.
When you are ready to assemble the salad, drain the radishes of its pickling liquid. Place the mushrooms, radishes, spring onion, celery and herbs in a large mixing bowl. Mix everything together then plate onto a serving dish.
Sprinkle over the chopped almonds and a bit of Maldon sea salt flakes before serving.
We ate the salad for lunch with some cheese and ham rolls