Mark Hix is the celebrity chef writing for The Independent in their weekly magazine, and most weeks, you’d want to roll up said magazine and whack it around Mark’s head and ears. He delights in the little number of lettuce and parmesan cheese shavings, or a fresh goats cheese with relish and ripe peaches, or another nice-looking, healthy and marvellous creation that barely deserves a place in a cooking column.
It’s just too easy.
While simplicity matters and while cooking mustn’t be complicated or overwhelming, I find he ought to show some real cooking too. You can’t impress many dinner parties with endless repetitions of a light little salad.
But, I do love the impressive salads, of course, and this is just the right time of the year.
A little number with cucumbers for crunch, mixed leaves, fresh raspberries and blueberries from the garden, and a small fried goat’s cheese makes a perfect and stunning starter.
A more complicated number with asparagus, chicken liver, swiss chard, crispy bacon and a cracked egg makes for a complex, delicious and quite perfect meal. (Shown here.)
A roasted onion and fennel base with goat’s cheese, grapes, sharp radish sprouts and pea shoots.
Fresh roasted peppers, fresh artichokes (fried with lime and olive oil), grilled aubergines, a pinch of thyme and lime.
Or just a good old and ever so popular Salade Lyonnais.
Lovely, easy to incorporate whatever the garden produces, easy to personalize, easy to impress with. Rarely a little Mark Hix number though. At least I now know what we’ll be cooking next week…