Char-Grilled Lettuce Salad (with Asparagus and Black Pudding)
An inviting salad recipe by Luke Thomas. This char-grilled lettuce salad brings together crunchy asparagus with rich black pudding and a honey mustard dressing.
Cooking lettuce gives it a really interesting texture. Here it’s char-grilled very lightly, so it just starts to caramelize underneath but stays crunchy in the middle. This is a great one-pan meal – and you can easily double up the ingredients for more people. The dressing is quite punchy, but you need it a bit fierce to cut through the richness of the black pudding and bring all the flavours together.
|thick slices of black pudding (about 50g)
|freshly ground black pepper
|large Gem lettuce, cut into quarters, lengthways a large handful of watercress
|large handful of watercress
|For the dressing:
|white wine vinegar
|salt and freshly ground black pepper
Slice 8 of the asparagus spears in half, lengthways. Using a vegetable peeler, create asparagus shavings from the remaining 4 spears and set them aside for later.
Bring a small pan of water to the boil and gently poach the eggs. You want the yolks to be nice and runny.
Heat a griddle pan over a medium heat, drizzle the black pudding with a little oil and cook it for 2-3 minutes on each side, until cooked through and a little crunchy around the edges.
As soon as you put the black pudding on the griddle, drizzle the asparagus lengths with oil and season with black pepper. Add them to the griddle pan and cook for about 3-4 minutes until lightly browned and they have those lovely criss-cross markings. After a couple of minutes, drizzle the lettuce quarters with oil and place them cut-side down next to the asparagus. Cook for a few minutes, until the lettuce has started to wilt and colour on its cooked side but is still crunchy in the middle. For the dressing, place all the ingredients in a lidded jar and give it a good shake.
When everything is ready, arrange the char-grilled lettuce, the asparagus spears and shavings and the watercress on a large serving platter or board. Toss gently then crumble over the black pudding. Drizzle with dressing and top with the poached eggs.