Spring garden salad

Serves 4

I love not having to jump in the car and drive off to the local shop or supermarket for boring salad leaves. I haven't got much of a garden but what I do have is a few pots, a small herb garden and some good hedgerows that yield some great leaves and shoots for an interesting and tasty salad. I even use sedum in my salads – which most people grow in their flower beds – but there are dozens of varieties which all have interesting flavours and textures for the salad bowl.

Pennywort, the lovely round-leaved wild plant, also makes a good addition and the great thing with all these leaves is that they are free.

2-3 handfuls of interesting salad, plant and herb leaves, washed and dried

For the dressing

1tbsp chardonnay or moscatel vinegar
tbsp Dijon or Tewkesbury mustard
A handful of mint leaves, chopped
A few sprigs of tarragon, chopped
2tbsp rapeseed oil
2tbsp vegetable or corn oil
1tbsp water
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

A few hours before serving, make the dressing by whisking all of the ingredients together or shaking them together in a jar. Leave to infuse, then strain through a fine sieve.

To serve, toss the leaves in half of the dressing, season to taste and serve the rest of the dressing separately.

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