Grilled Paneer Salad with Edible Flowers
I love cooking for friends. They bring out the best dishes from my kitchen. Ajit Nandini are always generous with their praise for my salads, often telling me to either open a salad bar or start taking salad making classes. While I’ve done neither, I love to up my game when I’m making salads for them. You see the effect of positive reinforcement right there 🙂
Last weekend, they were planning to get an Asian starter and main course for dinner, so I promised to make an Asian inspired salad. I had made up my mind to use the edible flowers from my garden. Edible flowers are quite the current culinary rage with chefs using them as garnishes in salads, drinks to making whole dishes using them. I wanted to use the beans flowers, rocket flowers, basil flowers along with the baby leaves of Malabar spinach, cinnamon basil (tastes similar to Thai basil), regular spinach and baby bok choy leaves.
I collected the flowers in a little bowl, soaked them in cold water to refresh them and dried them on a tea towel. The baby leaves were washed delicately in cold water and dried on towels. The bigger lettuce, rocket leaves were washed, chopped into bite sized pieces and dried on towels. So yes, salads mean more work than other dishes. Leaves need to be carefully washed and dried, which is half the battle won. You could say that a salad spinner could simply this process so much. I whole heartedly agree, but somehow I haven’t got myself one yet. I guess this is why salads are so overpriced in fine dining restaurants – the work that goes into the leaves.
And yes, I used paneer in this salad. Purists can turn up their noses saying “HUH Paneer in an Asian salad”! But hey, it’s better to use paneer instead of not-so-good tofu and marinated in Asian flavours, it could beat the pants off any tofu.
Grilled paneer salad with edible flowers