The British Larder Waldorf Salad
Finally summer has arrived. Out with stodgy hearty meals and in with light but punchy salads. I love classic recipes and this Waldorf salad is a good old classic but in the flesh it’s modern, pretty and looks incredibly sexy. Well technically speaking this Waldorf salad has been British Lardered and is not the traditional version.
Instead I have added a delicious creamy Oxford Blue to the mayonnaise base to add a touch of zing, difference and excitement to this old classic.
Well I never thought that I would ever hear myself saying a Waldorf salad looks sexy but this one does. This salad does not only look fantastic but also tastes wonderful. I have chosen to use Oxford Blue cheese, I like the perfect balance of the creaminess, acid and the fragrance of the blue. You could substitute the Oxford Blue for any creamy blue cheese of your choice, such as Roquefort, Gorgonzola or Suffolk Blue.
This Waldorf version works for me on all levels, it’s got a diverse range of textures from the crisp crunch of the granny Smith apples, celery and the roasted walnuts to the soft texture of the crumbly Oxford Blue and finally the creaminess of the Oxford Blue dressing.
It’s not only the textures that deliver and make this salad exciting but also the flavours. The strength of the blue cheese stands up against the tang of the granny Smith apple and the pepperiness of the watercress. All the flavours and textures work well together and make this salad interesting and delicious, or shall I say memorable and exciting.
I have chosen to use Granny Smith apples as I wanted the tangy sharpness that this variety of apple brings to this dish. You can customise your Waldorf salad to suit your own tastes, choose an apple of your choice, or even change the walnuts for others such as cobnuts, pecan nuts or hazelnuts.
Oxford Blue Dressing
- 2 free range egg yolks
- 1tsp Dijon mustard
- 100g Oxford Blue cheese
- Pinch of sugar
- Salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- 2tbs lemon juice
- 100ml olive oil
- 200ml sunflower oil
- 2 tbs warm water
Cream the egg yolk, mustard, cheese, lemon juice, sugar and seasoning until smooth. Slowly add the two oils while slowly whisking the mayonnaise to form an emulsion, if the mayonnaise become thick half way through add the water and continue adding the oil while whisking.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Chill the mayonnaise for 30 minutes, this will help the flavours to develop.
- 4 granny Smith apples
- 2 celery sticks
- 100g walnuts
- 50g Oxford Blue cheese
- Oxford Blue cheese dressing
Wash and peel the celery, cut into 5cm long batons x 2 -3 mm thick, keep them covered with damp kitchen paper until needed.
Lightly roast the walnuts in a preheated oven, cool completely.
Wash the watercress and apples.
When you are ready to serve, remove the core with an apple corer, then use a mandolin to slice the apples into 2 -3mm thick slices, keep the apples together to make them look as if they are whole again. Lightly dress each slice with the dressing and place the apple in it's natural shape in the centre of the chosen plate. Arrange the celery batons, roasted walnuts and watercress round the apple, crumb the cheese and divide it between the plates and spoon on drops of the dressing and serve immediately.