Suffolk’s Joey O’Hare and Katy Taylor have a turbo-charged salad for us.
Joey O’Hare and Katy Taylor from Suffolk are recipe writers and describe themselves as vegcentric. Joey, who studied at Ballymaloe Cookery School in Ireland, appeared on Masterchef the Professionals in 2015 and has worked as a chef in restaurants, private homes and food start ups. Together with Katy, they offer Zoom masterclasses, cookery videos, wine tutorials and more!
Find Joey and Katy on Instagram
Nobody loves cherry season more than Joey. She’s out of control and devours punnets of them daily. This summery recipe is a firm favourite from the archives, originally written for Great British Chefs in 2017, and it’s one we’ve enjoyed every summer since. Needless to say we are already ticking off the days in anticipation of cherry season – that’s late June until the end of August here in the UK. Not long to wait!
This salad is sweet and tangy thanks to the cherries and pomegranate molasses, crunchy and refreshing thanks to the cucumber and fresh herbs, and wholesome and satiating thanks to the wholegrain rice. It’s the perfect match for a chilled Beaujolais.
This is a great recipe to serve as part of a summer spread if you are having guests over as it can be fully made in advance.
1 red onion
250g of cherries
2 baby cucumber (or 1 regular)
20g of mint
20g of dill
20g of flat leaf parsley
50g of pine nuts, toasted
8tbsp of olive oil
1tsp of sumac
If time, soak the rice for 2 hours in cold water. Drain and rinse well.
Cover the rice with cold water, add a pinch of salt, and bring to a gentle simmer. Simmer for 22-30 minutes, or until cooked through.
Drain the rice through a sieve or colander and rinse with a little cold water. Allow the steam to billow off as much as possible, to avoid a wet, heavy salad.
While the rice is cooling, peel, half and finely sliced onion into wafer thin half-moons – the thinner the better! – then toss with the sumac, red wine vinegar and a pinch of salt to macerate.
Halve and de-stone the cherries; chop the cucumber into thin rounds (if you are using a regular cucumber quarter it first and remove its watery core); and finely chop all the herbs.
Toast the pine nuts in a dry pan over a very low heat; watch your pan like a hawk and shimmy these around often. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until golden.
To make the dressing stir together the pomegranate molasses, olive oil and sea salt.
Combine all your prepped ingredients in a large mixing bowl, toss well with the pomegranate dressing, then transfer into a serving dish.
Garnish with a few extra herbs, some za’atar, and a generous squeeze of fresh lemon juice to brighten that first mouthful.
This salad is wonderful served with creamy hummus, dukkah, flatbreads and seasonal crudités.