Raw power: Mark Hix gets fresh for summer

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

When fresh ingredients have this much flavour, there's no need even to cook them

As the weather finally starts to become warmer, slaving over a hot stove can lose its appeal – and this is the time of year when raw food really comes into its own. You don't need actually to cook food to create interesting and tasty dishes; just look at the Japanese, who seem to have mastered the art pretty well. Another thing to bear in mind more generally is that when you are using top-notch uncooked ingredients, you need do very little to them to enjoy their full flavour. Raw food is also richer in proteins and vitamins than cooked food, so you win both ways.

Shaved asparagus and goat's cheese salad

Serves 4

Raw asparagus might seem a little odd, but it's actually delicious, and offers a vastly different eating experience to the cooked variety.

A couple of handfuls of small salad leaves
12 or so stems of thick asparagus, woody stalks trimmed
120-150g soft goat's cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the dressing

The juice of 1 lemon
3-4tbsp extra-virgin rapeseed oil

With a sharp mandolin or with a very sharp knife, slice the asparagus as thinly as possible on the angle and place in a bowl. Mix all of the ingredients for the dressing, season well and mix with the asparagus and leave for 10 minutes.

Toss the asparagus with the leaves and arrange on plates. Crumble the goat's cheese over the salad and serve immediately.

Pineapple with Sichuan peppercorn sorbet

Serves 4

Pineapple is a great after-dinner fruit because it helps to digest your food. This is a kind of sorbet granita which can be made without an ice-cream maker, and Sichuan peppercorns have a lovely tingling quality, which adds a nice twist.

1 large sweet pineapple
1tsp Sichuan peppercorns, lightly crushed

Top and tail the pineapple (I've left mine with the skin on here, but peel it if you wish). Cut four slices from the pineapple then peel, chop and blend the rest with the Sichuan peppercorns. Transfer to a plastic or non-reactive container and place in the freezer. Leave in the freezer for 4-6 hours, stirring every so often until frozen. Quarter each pineapple slice and arrange on plates with the sorbet.

Sashimi salad

Serves 4

I've eaten salads such as this at London's Nobu restaurant and it's essential to use really fresh fish. Ponzu is a kind of ready-made citrus dressing that can be bought from Japanese supermarkets as well as good delis and supermarkets.

150-200g very fresh white fish such as bass, bream, halibut etc
A small handful of small tasty salad leaves and herbs such as coriander, mizuna, celery, silver sorrel, rocket etc
1 medium carrot, peeled and shredded into matchstick-sized pieces
6-8 mangetout, trimmed and shredded
4-5cm piece of mooli, peeled and shredded into matchstick-sized pieces
4 spring onions, finely shredded on the angle
50-60g inoki mushrooms, trimmed
10g black fungus, soaked in cold water for a couple of hours
120-150ml Ponzu

Drain the black fungus and shred as finely as possible; place in a bowl with the inoki mushrooms and Ponzu and leave for about 30 minutes.

Slice the fish with a sharp knife as thinly as possible and lay out on a tray. Toss the mushrooms with the salad leaves, shredded vegetables and spring onions, reserving a couple of spoonfuls of the liquid and season.

Spoon the reserved Ponzu over the fish. Arrange the salad on plates with the slices of fish and spoon over any excess Ponzu.

Beef with white radish and pomegranate molasses

Serves 4

Eating raw beef is an essential part of many cuisines around the world – we've all heard about carpaccio and steak tartare, and the Japanese specialise in many dishes with either raw or seared beef such as tataki.

You need to use very fresh beef for this recipe, and you can use fillet or sirloin.

Pomegranate molasses is a thick sweet and sour syrup used in many middle Eastern recipes; you can buy it from Turkish or Middle Eastern shops and good delis.

400g raw fillet or sirloin, trimmed of fat and sinew
A 12cm-piece of mooli (white radish or daikon), peeled
2-3tbsp pomegranate molasses

With a sharp knife, cut the beef into thin slices (place it in the freezer half an hour before to ease slicing); arrange on serving plates. Cut the mooli into matchstick-sized pieces, wash and dry on kitchen paper. Spoon the pomegranate molasses over the beef and scatter over the mooli.

News
The Banksy image in Folkestone before it was vandalised
people
Life and Style
tech

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts

Sport
football West Brom vs Man Utd match report: Blind grabs point, but away form a problem for Van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
Gotham is coming to UK shores this autumn
tvGotham, episode 2, review
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Bloom Time: Mira Sorvino
tvMira Sorvino on leaving movie roles for 'The Intruders'
News
First woman: Valentina Tereshkova
peopleNASA guinea pig Kate Greene thinks it might fly
News
Brian Harvey turned up at Downing Street today demanding to speak to the Prime Minister
news

Met Police confirm there was a 'minor disturbance' and that no-one was arrested

Arts and Entertainment
George Lucas poses with a group of Star Wars-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2010
films

George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios

Voices
Chris Grayling, Justice Secretary: 'There are pressures which we are facing but there is not a crisis'
voices

Does Chris Grayling realise what a vague concept he is dealing with?

Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Life and Style
The charity Sands reports that 11 babies are stillborn everyday in the UK
lifeEleven babies are stillborn every day in the UK, yet no one speaks about this silent tragedy
News
Blackpool is expected to become one of the first places to introduce the Government’s controversial new Public Space Protection Orders (PSPOs)
news

Parties threaten resort's image as a family destination

Life and Style
Northern soul mecca the Wigan Casino
fashionGone are the punks, casuals, new romantics, ravers, skaters, crusties. Now all kids look the same
Life and Style
gaming

I Am Bread could actually be a challenging and nuanced title

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    SCRUM Master

    £30 - 50k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a SCRUM Master to joi...

    Franchise Support Assistant

    £13,520: Recruitment Genius: As this role can be customer facing at times, the...

    Financial Controller

    £50000 - £60000 per annum: Sauce Recruitment: A successful entertainment, even...

    Direct Marketing Executive - Offline - SW London

    £25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A fantastic opportunity h...

    Day In a Page

    Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

    Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

    Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
    British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

    British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

    Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
    Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

    Salisbury ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities

    The city is home to one of the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta, along with the world’s oldest mechanical clock
    Let's talk about loss

    We need to talk about loss

    Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
    Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

    Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

    Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
    Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

    'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

    If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
    James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

    Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
    Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

    Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

    Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
    Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

    Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

    Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
    How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

    How to dress with authority

    Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
    New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

    New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

    'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

    The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
    Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

    Tim Minchin interview

    For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
    Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

    Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
    Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

    Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

    Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album