Damien Pignolet

Salad of cauliflower remoulade baby beetrot and cucumber

These recipes are classics. Not of haute cuisine but of bistro fare, which means they come from kitchens run by families or with limited staff. Bistro dishes should not require a battery of pots and pans, exotic ingredients and complex technical skills. They do, however, require an understanding of how things should taste. The origins of bistro cooking are French home cooking at its best, follow these carefully and with allowance in time and ingredients for trial and error, they should be successful at home.

Serves 6

Ingredients

400-500g cauliflower
18 baby beetroots, scrubbed
2 small to medium Lebanese cucumbers
baby beetroot leaves or roquette leaves
2-3 tablespoons creme fraiche
1 egg yolk
1 tablespoons Dijon mustard
30-50ml lemon juice
180ml olive oil
1 small garlic clove
salt and freshly ground black pepper

Method

Trim the cauliflower to neat flowers.

Cook in boiling salted water for a few minutes until firm but tender.

Drain and chill briefly in iced or cold running water. Drain for 30 minutes.

Trim the beetroot stems about 2-3 cm from the bulb, wrap each in foil and bake at 180 degrees for 30-40 minutes.

When they pierce tender with a skewer, peel and trim the top and tail.

Wash the cucumber, quarter lengthwise and dice neatly.

Wash and spin dry the leaves.

This dressing is a variation on the classic sauce remoulade and consists of a mustardy mayonnaise acidulated with lemon juice and finished with creme fraiche.

Rub the bowl with the lightly crushed garlic and discard the clove.

Mix the yolk and mustard with a good pinch of salt and gradually add the oil until the sauce thickens using a wooden spoon preferably.

Don't add more oil until the previous addition is emulsified.

Acidulate with lemon juice and finish with crme fraiche and pepper.

The consistency should be thickish but pourable.

Combine all the ingredients with some dressing and toss well. Arrange in bowls or on plates and coat the cauliflower with a little remoulade.

Salad of cauliflower remoulade baby beetrot and cucumber

Preamble
These recipes are classics. Not of haute cuisine but of bistro fare, which means they come from kitchens run by families or with limited staff. Bistro dishes should not require a battery of pots and pans, exotic ingredients and complex technical skills. They do, however, require an understanding of how things should taste. The origins of bistro cooking are French home cooking at its best, follow these carefully and with allowance in time and ingredients for trial and error, they should be successful at home.