Horta on Toast
This fresh and delicious recipe for greens on toast with a sweet pepper and chilli jam is perfect for an easy lunch, but also works well as a light vegan supper. For a vegetarian option, just add a poached egg or top with crumbled feta.
Horta (or khorta) is a Greek catch-all term for greens, usually braised or boiled with plenty of olive oil and lemon. Use any mixture of robust greens you like, wild or not; anything from the first asparagus, to chard or large spinach leaves, to peppery watercress will be superb. A softly poached or fried egg, or a crumble of feta, on top is an excellent addition… but ruins the recipe’s current vegan credentials.
|2||plump garlic cloves, preferably mild, spring garlic|
|750g||mixed green leaves and shoots, such as large spinach leaves, kale, chard, sprue asparagus, mustard leaves, wild garlic, hop shoots, watercress and so on|
|3 tbsp||olive oil|
|1||mild red chilli, finely sliced|
|Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper|
|4||large slices of rye or sourdough bread|
|Extra virgin olive oil, to serve|
Finely slice 1 garlic clove and halve the other. Wash well and trim all the greens, removing any coarse stalks and slicing leaves.
Warm the regular olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the sliced garlic and chilli and cook over a medium heat for a minute. Throw in the greens and stir-fry for 3–4 minutes over a medium-high heat, tossing the pan often, until the greens are wilted but still retain a bit of bite. Season well with salt and pepper.
Toast or grill the bread until slightly charred, then rub a side of each slice with the cut sides of the halved garlic clove.
Divide the greens between the toasted bread slices – piling them high – with a few drops of extra virgin olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice and a good spoonful of pepper and chilli jam.
Serve with: Sweet Pepper and Chilli Jam (The New Vegetarian, page 307)