More from Mrs Marshall on lettuce

Having come across a long recipe  involving many different processes to cook lettuce – blanching the poor thing, boiling it, cutting it, braising it, folding it, flattening it, glazing it and pouring gravy around it, I wondered if Mrs A.B.Marshall in her Cookery Book used it a way we would recognise, in a salad perhaps.

She offers many different salads, which seem various forms of cold vegetables – Little Salads á la Progrès which are timbales of cooked vegetables including salsify purée in aspic, Chicken Salad á la Hanson – chicken in aspic with lots of other things including olives, Salad á la Adeline which is salad vegetables with tomato mayonnaise and Little Salads á la Viennoise which is meat paste served with tomato salad… just plain dressed, seasoned tomatoes with truffle. She has one recipe involving lettuce – uncooked!!

It’s fascinating to see her using ingredients we think of as modern, fresh herbs, tarragon vinegar, chillies, paprika, olives and gherkins – plus ça change, she might have said!

Salade á la Nuremburg

  • well washed crisp lettuce or endive, picked in little pieces
  • crisp celery
  • cooked beetroot
  • Julienned strips of cucumber
  • cold cooked chicken or game
  • anchovy fillets
  • sliced Spanish olives
  • chopped eschalot (shallots)
  • tarragon and chervil, chopped
  • a few shreds of French red chillies
  • sliced gherkins
  • hard-boiled egg yolk, rubbed through a sieve
  • little bunches of beetroot
  • mignonette pepper (an equal mix of black and white peppercorns, ground)
  • dressing – 2 raw egg yolks, salt, made mustard – 1 saltspoon  each of French and English, coralline pepper (paprika), salad oil, 1 tbsp tarragon vinegar, castor sugar, ¼ pint stiffly whipped cream:- mix egg yolks, mustard, coralline pepper very well, slowly add salad oil, add tarragon vinegar slowly, pinch of sugar and fold in the whipped cream
  1. place lettuce or endive, celery, beetroot, cucumber, chicken or game, anchovy fillets and olives onto or into a dish or salad bowl (I’m guessing the vegetables have been sliced or cut into pieces, and ditto the meat)
  2. season with the mignotte pepper, pour on the dressing and mix well
  3. sprinkle over the eschalot, herbs. chillies, gherkins and egg
  4. decorate with the small bunches of beetroot

Compared to her ghastly recipe for cooked lettuce, this sounds fresh and nice, but I might be tempted to serve the dressing separately. I would also worry that the beetroot might bleed into the salad! I like the use of anchovies to give the bland chicken a lift!

I haven’t yet made this salad but the image I’m sharing is of a delicious beetroot and lime salad.

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