Chefs and bloggers Joey & Katy show us how to put a rustle up a delectable gribiche salad.
Simple, outrageously tasty, and bang in season. Here’s a rather fancy – though speedy to prepare – Spring lunch we’re enjoying again and again.
The creamy tarragon dressing is double what you need for 2; try stirring it through white beans and blanched leeks the next day for an exceptional twist on leeks vinaigrette.
Asparagus – the holy grail when of a seasonal diet – is in season in the UK from Mid-April to Mid-June. Two cruelly short months, and that’s your lot. During these weeks we chomp it on the daily (purse strings permitting) and you can expect to see a lot more asparagus recipes cropping up in the coming weeks. Thank you Riverford for these very first delightful spears of the season; they were magic.
Gribiche? Gribiche is a classic of old-school French cuisine. It’s a cold sauce made with boiled eggs (the yolks are blended with neutral oil and the whites are finely chopped), and flavoured with mustard, chopped gherkins, capers, parsley and tarragon. We’ve taken these ingredients and reimagined them into this speedy salad. Enjoy!
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 6 mins
This recipe serves 2.
- 3 organic, free-range eggs (4 if you’re hungry)
- 1 bunch asparagus
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp baby capers
- 10-12 cornichons
For the dressing:
- 2 tbsp mayonnaise
- 2 tbsp kefir
- 1 tbsp white wine vinegar
- Pinch salt
- 10 g tarragon leaves (1 supermarket pack once leaves have been stripped from stalks)
- 10 g parsley leaves (½ supermarket pack)
- Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil over a medium heat with the lid on. Once simmering, submerge the eggs and set a timer for 5 minutes.
- Remove the tough final inch off the end of the asparagus spears, and once the timer goes off add the asparagus to the simmering water for 1 minute only.
- After 1 minute drain the eggs and the asparagus together (the eggs will have had their ideal 6 minutes) and all the steam to billow off well.
- Peel the eggs under gentle running water for a neater finish.
- Put all the dressing ingredients in a blender or nutribullet and whizz until smooth and creamy. Note, if your blender is very large try doubling the recipe so there’s enough bulk for the blender to do its job. Leftover dressing will last 4 days in the fridge and we’ve popped some extra recipe ideas below. Alternatively, prepare by hand.
- Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in your smallest saucepan. Give your baby capers a good squeeze in kitchen paper to remove excess moisture then fry on a high heat for 3 minutes until puffed-up and crispy. These will add fantastic texture to the overall salad.
- Chop your cornichons into thin rounds and roughly chop your eggs.
- To assemble the salad, scatter the asparagus on a serving plate and top with the chopped eggs. Scatter over the diced cornichons and flood everything with the creamy tarragon dressing. Finally, scatter over those delightfully crispy fried capers. A few extra herbs look pretty on top if you wish, but flavour wise these aren’t needed – it’s all there! Tuck in!
We love this one with toasted rye bread and a drizzle of olive oil.
What to rustle up with extra tarragon dressing?
White bean & tarragon leek vinaigrette – drain and rinse white beans and mixed with well-cooked leeks (slice and boil for 8 minutes then drain well and allow all steam to billow off). Perhaps toss with seasonal watercress too?
Tarragon & asparagus pasta salad – cook, drain and cool some white pasta (or better yet use some left-overs) and toss with rocket, toasted pine nuts and blanched peas.
A spring jacket potato – this creamy, mayo-based dressing is magic mashed into the fluffy middle of a jacket potato; boiled eggs, some tuna or goat’s cheese all make lovely accompaniments here.