Time for salad Mr Wolf!

I love salad at any time of the year, but it’s particularly nice in the summer when you know that all the ingredients are in season and if you shop carefully they are locally grown. I usually just concoct something with whatever is to hand, and never mind putting in something strange if it seems as if it would be nice with everything else – raspberries for instance, or cold left-over vegetables… anything goes really!

However, every so often, I see a recipe and I do follow it – a cousin makes a wonderful 24-hour salad, which I have never made because it’s a party dish for lots of people. It’s layers of all sorts of things, lettuce, mayonnaise, peas, grated cheese… oh and other things I seem to have forgotten… I must ask her about it! Maybe next time we have friends round i could impress them with it!

I came across a recipe for Red Riding Hood salad… intriguing!  I think it is a Russian or Ukrainian recipe originally and the idea is to build up layers of ingredients inside a cake ring, sometimes separated by mayonnaise, sometimes not, but distinct layers so when the ring is removed it looks attractive. The Red Riding Hood idea comes from the fact that it is topped with pomegranate seeds.

One recipe I saw had these items:

  • cubed breast of chicken
  • cubed potatoes
  • sliced or cubed carrots
  • grated cheese
  • roughly chopped walnuts
  •  quartered eggs
  • mayonnaise
  • pomegranate

Another was similar:

  •  blanched and chopped onion
  • smoked cubed chicken
  • cubed potatoes
  • cooked carrots,
  • grated cheese
  • finely chopped walnuts
  • grated or finely chopped boiled eggs
  • mayinnaise
  • pomegranate

Both of these were put in layers, but I came across another where the salad was layered in a long circular round shape – like half an egg, and then the mayonnaise was spread all over it and the pomegranate was sprinkled on the top for decoration.  Once again the ingredients were similar, but beef replaced chicken:

  • beef
  • potatoes
  • eggs
  • carrots
  • onion
  • walnuts
  • mayonnaise
  • pomegranate

I found another which was not this traditional one, but just a mixed salad with  cherry tomatoes and red onion and then just other salad vegetables, herbs and mozzarella – very tasty, but to my mind not as dramatic or good as the Russian version with its crunchy nuts and pomegranate, and cheese, mayonnaise and eggs. There was also a Little R. R. cocktail – Disaronno, vodka, strawberry liqueur, prosecco, which doesn’t appeal to me at all – too sweet!

One thing I discovered, the word for pomegranate in Russian is the same as garnet the gemstone – isn’t that nice, pomegranate seeds really do look like bright little jewels!

I couldn’t find any pictures of Red Riding Hood, or pomegranates, so for my featured image I have garnet red hydrangeas.



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