The crunch of the fried artichokes in my garden life salad gives this a wonderful texture and paired with the olive oil croutons, it is alive with flavours.
As I was plating up this salad I was all smiles knowing that my somewhat basic gardening skills had produced such a bounty of greens, eggs, herbs and basically this stunning salad. If you have other greens, herbs and leaves that you would like to add then go right ahead.
- 200 g shelling peas
- 1 zucchini peeled into ribbons
- 2 artichokes
- 1 cup olive oil for frying
- 4 cups of mixed leaves such as sorrel, endive, lettuce, nasturtiums, pineapple sage flowers, basil, parsley, rocket
- 3 organic or your own chook eggs
- 1 ½ cups chunky bread crumbs
- ¼ cup virgin olive oil
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Juice of ½ lemon
- 2 cups of mixed picked herbs such as basil, thyme, sage, oregano, parsley, mint, chives, marjoram
- 6 large green olives, deseeded
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- Salt to taste
Blanch the peas in boiling water for 2-3 minutes and refresh in cold water, drain and set aside.
Prepare the artichokes by peeling off the outer 2 layers of leaves, cut about 1/3 from the top of the artichoke and with a spoon remove the fluffy section in the middle, cut the artichoke into eighths. Have ready a bowl of water with half a lemon squeezed in as the artichokes will tend to discolour, immerse the artichoke pieces and allow to sit in the lemon water for about 5 minutes.
Drain and then fry in the hot olive oil until crispy and golden, drain on paper towel. Fry off the chunky crumbs in the same oil until golden, set aside on paper towel to drain.
Place some plastic wrap in a small ramekin or dish, crack in an egg and then tie up the plastic very tightly around the egg and immerse into simmering water for about 8-9 minutes until you see that the white and yolk are just cooked, remove and allow to cool slightly.
Arrange all of the greens, herbs and peas onto a platter. Remove the eggs from the plastic and gently break them open over the salad. Scatter over the ribbons of zucchini.
Herb and Olive Pesto
Place all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until combine and pesto looking.
Make up your dressing with 2 tbsp. of the herb and olive pesto, juice of half a lemon and a splash of olive oil, season with a little salt and pepper and drizzle this over the salad topping it off with the lemon zest, fried artichoke and crunchy croutons.