Its spring -sort of- but even if its not totally here you can see it right around the corner and it is the season for all things fresh and colorful…So many dishes could be altered to be happier, prettier and so much more exciting using slightly different ingredients here is one idea I implemented rather recently :) It is sort of a salad or a side dish or an appetizer or a snack or whatever you want it to be:
Purple potatoes -boiled, pureed with butter & salt, chilled.
Avocados – food processor or fork mashed with a bit of salt and lemon juice to brighten the flavor and prevent it from discoloring.
Radishes – regular or even watermelon ones.
Quail eggs – hard boiled.
Just take a ring/rectangular mold or a cookie cutter and create the layers…If it is an appetizer add some boiled shrimp or smoked salmon on top or as an extra layer. You don’t have or do not like quail eggs – boil regular eggs. separate the yolk from the white and grate on a fine grater – this will create extra two colorful layers and it will be fluffy and pretty :)
Same thing could be done soon with the heirloom tomatoes, cut red, yellow, orange, rosso-bruno and green tomatoes, alternate the slices with bocconcini, basil leaves and a drizzle of olive oil – so pretty and lively right away!
Another colorful thing is this simple bean and pine nut salad – cook the beans like you normally would and while they are still warm add a good amount of pine nuts, minced garlic, a good amount of olive oil, some chopped cilantro or parsley and salt & freshly ground pepper; let cool to at least room temperature…
and if you pair it with baked salmon (just a brush of butter, salt and pepper and into the oven on 450F for about 15 minutes for a small piece for two) covered in a tomato Mediterranean style salsa – the smell will get you to drop right there and then. By the way the salsa is super simple – cut your tomatoes into fine dice, add minced garlic, a small shallot, lemon zest, fresh chives and basil, olive oil and a tiny bit of red wine vinegar, salt and pepper to taste and let stand in the fridge overnight (use cold).