I am trying to recover from a heat wave that has lasted almost two weeks. Two weeks of temperatures that do not dip below the 30˚C mark at dusk and rarely below 36˚C in the afternoon. Two weeks of sweat dripping down unmentionable areas. Two weeks of drowning in three to twelve liters of water a day; the forced consumption of which has been driven solely by the primal self-preservation instinct against death by dehydration.
My afternoons have consisted mainly of ensuring that pink cheeked kiddos who arrive home smelling boldly of the child version of sweat, regain a more favourable disposition by cooling off in the swimming pool. During that time, I try to plan dinner. However, by 4 30 pm I too have lost my sense of humour with the torridity that is my back yard, and this decision often requires a significant effort.
My ideal go to recipe in a heat wave is one which would require me to be in the kitchen for about ten minutes, or less. There are few dinner recipes that would meet that criterion, goodness even Jamie needs 30. As a rule, I would say that we stick to salads alongside grilled meat or chicken; light and simple fare being the main objective.
When it comes to salads though, nothing can draw tears from my eyes faster than what I like to call the “Restaurant Greek Salad”. You have seen this abomination before I am certain: half an iceberg lettuce, a quarter of a tomato and a slice of cucumber bravely holding up two thick sliced brown onion rings, two olives and a block of hard feta. I weep, not only for the loss of flavour and creativity, but also because of the sad vilification of salad it represents.
I am always on the lookout for a new stunning salad recipe to try and today’s recipe for a Broccoli Salad with Yoghurt Dressing has a wonderful little story attached.
One summer tennis evening get together, my friend Karen made this Broccoli Salad with Yoghurt Dressing. Karen’s cooking is always both health conscious and delicious and this salad with its crunch and garlicky dressing was no exception.
The original recipe for this salad belongs to the proprietors of Oudrif; an environmentally friendly lodge located on the perennial Doring River in the foothills of the Cederberg. Karen enjoyed a weekend at the lodge and sings the praises of both the lodge and the delicious bounty from the lodge’s kitchen. Whilst there Karen requested and subsequently bought this recipe from Jeanine, by way of a donation to the farm’s dog sterilization program.
Jeanine has very kindly agreed to allow me to share her recipe here on the blog. I have given the recipe just as it was given to me, and hope for her sake that I have done it justice. Thank you so very much Jeanine!
To make a reservation at Oudrif (hint hint Dear Husband) you can contact Bill or Jeanine Mitchell on (027) 482 2397 or e-mail them at oudrif(at)telkomsa(dot)net .
Karen’s health conscious cooking has much to do with the fact that she penned this book, ‘The Lean Aubergine – A South African Guide to Low-fat Shopping, Cooking and Eating Out’.
Healthy eating is the order of the day at this time of year and Karen suggests that you can lighten this salad even further by using light mayonnaise and low-fat yoghurt.
You can order Karen’s book which costs R 240 (including postage in SA) directly through her via email on karenrd(at)mweb(dot)co(dot)za.
- 1 large head of broccoli, snipped into florets
- 10 ml (2 t) butter
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 65 ml (¼ C) dry white wine
- 65 ml (¼ C) marjoram leaves
- 30 ml (2 T) mayonnaise (Hellman’s)
- 125 ml (½ C) plain yoghurt (Greek)
- Steam the broccoli florets until tender. Refresh under cold water and cool.
- Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the garlic, wine and marjoram. Simmer over medium heat for one minute or until the sauce is slightly creamy.
- Mix together the mayonnaise and the yoghurt.
- Add the butter reduction to the mayonnaise dressing and mix well.
- Pour the dressing over the broccoli and serve immediately.