I watch a fair whack of food programmes on TV and – instead of keeping a notebook handy to jot things down – I rely on my memory to come through when I eventually decide to cook the dish. Not a good idea.
I saw someone (most likely Ina Garten) make a warm pasta salad with smoked bacon and I had a beautiful package of Wiltshire back bacon, so – when Tandy issued rocket as her latest seasonal ingredient challenge – I knew exactly what I wanted to make.
2 cups cooked fusilli
6 rashers smoked bacon crisply fried and diced
1 can of chickpeas, drained
1 handful of mixed Tuscan herbs (I used Watercress, mizuna, rocket and red spinach)
Salt & pepper to taste
Juice of 1 lemon and a drizzle of olive oil
As is always the case, the simplest dishes always come out tops. We loved this salad, the bite of the rocket was a perfect playmate for the other ingredients.
Eruca sativa (syn. E. vesicaria subsp. sativa (Miller) Thell., Brassica eruca L.), is an edible annual plant, commonly known as rocket, roquette, rucola or arugula, not to be confused with Wild rocket. It is a species of Eruca native to the Mediterranean region, from Morocco and Portugal east to Lebanon and Turkey.
And here are my answers to Mandy ‘s latest ‘Getting To Know You Challenge’:
1. Who would you be honoured to have cook in your kitchen?
Anthony Bourdain … naked.
2. What have you always wanted to cook or eat but never have?
3. What is your favourite part of a chicken?
That little fillet of soft meat in the back.
4. Do you use a knife or a vegetable peeler to peel potatoes?
Most of a potato’s fibre is in the skin, peeling it is just silly.
5. What one item do you keep in the kitchen you know you shouldn’t use but do?
Ready-rolled frozen puff pastry. So sue me!
6. Do you like using the new culinary foam with your meals?
I don’t know anything about the product.
7. What 3 meals would you take to a friend who is sick in bed?
And catch their germs, are you crazy???