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Warm Salad of New Potato, Pea and Trout with Poached Egg

Warm Salad  of New Potato, Pea and Trout with Poached EggA lovely spring-into-summer warm salad to look forward to when you harvest your first crop of little new potatoes (very different from those all-year ‘baby’potatoes masquerading as ‘new’), and perhaps your own fresh peas (or mangetout), which are easily grown in small spaces if you choose dwarf varieties; out of season, frozen peas can be used instead as they freeze very well. American land cress is easily grown and can be used instead of watercress, if wished; likewise spinach beet (perpetual spinach) is easier to grow than true spinach.  

Serves 4

350g/12oz small new potatoes, halved
about 200g/7oz freshly podded peas, or mangetout (strings removed, then snapped or sliced)
4 spring onions, finely sliced
30ml/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
zest and juice 1 lemon
2 tbsp freshly chopped parsley
1 pack (190g/6 oz) hot smoked trout
Mixture (140g approx) of watercress, spinach and rocket leaves, as available, washed and dried
4 free range eggs

1. Boil the potatoes with a sprig of mint for 5-8 minutes, or until just tender (a mixture of milk and water is especially good). Add the peas and boil for a further 2 minutes. Drain in a colander, then place in a large bowl.

2. Add the spring onions, olive oil, lemon zest and juice and parsley and toss together. Season to taste with crunchy sea salt (Maldon or Cornish) and a grinding of black pepper. Add the trout and set aside.

3. Fill a frying pan with water, salt lightly and bring to the boil. Reduce to simmering point, then carefully crack the eggs in and poach for 3-4 minutes, depending how you like your eggs.

4. While the eggs are cooking, add the leaves to the warm salad and lightly toss together. Divide between four plates. Remove the eggs from the hot water with a slotted spoon and place on top of the salad. Serve immediately, with some fresh crusty bread.

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