Chargrilled chicken, crispy prosciutto and nectarine salad

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Now I’m not usually a fan of salads with fruit in them but this little beauty has converted me! This chicken, prosciutto and nectarine salad is sure to become one of your staple summer salads when evenings are balmy, time is short perhaps or you’re entertaining and want a lighter option. The ingredients in this have been chosen to give balance; the salty prosciutto, the savoury cheese, sweet nectarine and some added texture from the toasted walnuts and it is all brought together with a dressing that could not be more straightforward so raid the supermarket and get cooking!

Ingredients- serves 2-3
Olive oil
2 large skinless chicken breasts
4 slices of prosciutto
Handful of walnut halves
2 ripe nectarines- stone removed and sliced into wedges
Small log of soft goat cheese
Mixed salad leaves such as sweet lettuce, watercress and rocket

For the dressing
2 tbsps olive oil
2 tsps Dijon mustard
1 tsp runny honey
2 tbsps lemon juice
Salt and pepper to season

1. If you want to get ahead you can make the dressing in advance simply combining all the dressing ingredients and mixing together well; chill until needed. Next up crisp the prosciutto by dry frying the slices in a frying pan over a medium heat. Remove from the heat when the prosciutto is crisp and slightly golden and set aside. Pop in the walnuts and toast for a couple of minutes before also setting aside.

2. Wrap the chicken in clingfilm and use a meat tenderiser or rolling pin to hit it out so each breast is around the same thickness so they cook evenly. Rub the chicken in a glug of olive oil and season well. Heat a griddle pan to medium- high and cook each breast for around 4 minutes on each side until you cooked through and the juices run clear. Set aside and allow to rest.

3. Add another glug of oil in the frying pan that you had cooked the prosciutto in. Heat to medium and add the nectarine wedges; fry until caramelised but still holding their shape.

4. Take a large mixing bowl and toss the salad leaves with a little of the dressing so the leaves are evenly coated. Add the prosciutto, nectarines, prosciutto and walnuts and combine well. Slice the chargrilled chicken and add. Serve on a platter so everyone can help themselves and finish by dotting the cheese over the salad; drizzle with a little more of the dressing and serve.

Chargrilled chicken, crispy prosciutto and nectarine salad- because sweet and savoury are a match made in heaven!

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Comforting creamy potato, cabbage and onion bake

I made this dish as an accompaniment to a recent St Patrick’s day dinner with a gammon joint on the side but the beauty of this recipe is that it is good for any occasion. This is a great way of also using up any odds and ends you may have.

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Ingredients-serves 4
500g potato such as Maris Piper- peeled and cubed into inch chunks
1 large onion- sliced
2 garlic cloves- sliced or crushed
Leaves from 4 sprigs of fresh thyme
Small cabbage such as celtic or savoy- sliced
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
100ml double cream
100ml vegetable stock
100g Taleggio
Salt and pepper to season

1. Start off by parboiling the potatoes in lightly salted water before draining well. Preheat the oven to 180c/ 160fan. While this is happening, take a large frying pan and heat a little vegetable oil before frying the onion, garlic and thyme for a couple of minutes.

2. Next up goes the cabbage slices which need to cook down for another couple of minutes so they soften. Remember to remove any hard veins in the cabbage as you cut it as nobody wants to end up chewing on one of those all evening. Drizzle over the cream and stock before adding the mustard and stirring well to combine. Simmer for a minute before seasoning well and do always check the seasoning. Pop in half of the Taleggio by cutting into small pieces.

3. Toss the potato chunks through and ensure all the ingredients are well combined. Place the whole lot in an ovenproof baking dish and top with the remaining cheese, and dots of butter if you like, before baking for around half an hour until lightly golden and bubbling.

Serve with meat such as gammon or enjoy by itself. Place in the centre of the table and watch everyone dig in- just make sure there’s some left for you!

Potato, cabbage and onion bake- a great way to celebrate humble vegetables in the most delicious way!