The Rising Popularity of Gourmet Salads
We know here at The Fenny Kitchen, that salads are big news and if you are on social media you will have noticed more and more images being shared of delicious salad leaves entwined with flowers; as gourmet salads have increased in popularity over the last couple of years.
More than 130,000 images of food are shared on Instagram every day and this along with Facebook and Pinterest has influenced the demand for botanicals; as people want their dishes to look as pretty as possible when sharing their food images. Social media along with numerous restaurants have shown that salads can take centre place at dinner time and are no longer the poor relation to meat and fish.
Edible flowers in your salad is not a new trend though as it goes back at least 2,000 years, but is now having a revival with modern cooks once again discovering the delights of the herbaceous border. In Roman times, it was common to use flowers in cooking, with them flavouring wine with roses and violets and the Greeks also used flowers and herbs for medicinal purposes. Now many years later the British have woken up to their versatility and they are in huge demand from foodies because of the powerful flavours and colours they are able to create with them.
The trend was popularised by shows such as the 'Great British Bake Off' and edible flowers have also featured in the dishes of many celebrity chefs. The supermarkets have noticed the trend and also come on board including Sainsbury’s who stock several edible flower varieties, including tagete marigold, monkey flowers, viola and dianthus alongside traditional fresh herbs.
With the Fenny Kitchen being a restaurant that likes to keep up with the current trends; we constantly try to offer new dishes alongside our popular customer favourites; therefore, we were excited recently to introduce gourmet salads as part of our new range of choose your own salad options.
We are aware that when customers order a salad, they all have differing tastes and mainstream salad in many restaurants doesn’t always contain the options that customers would necessarily choose themselves at home. Many restaurants tend to offer very safe options and therefore, we decided to put the decision into our customers hands to let them choose for themselves. This was shortly followed by the introduction of our edible flowers and leaves which together make a stunning salad that is almost too beautiful to eat.
As a restaurant that uses fresh tasty ingredients in all our dishes, we are pleased to be using very fresh produce from Oakfield Organics and the wonderful salad and edible flowers are grown in the fertile soil of North Wales by Leigh Ayland in his beautiful small holding overlooking the Seven River. Having tried the produce of many salad producers since we opened in August 2018, we can safely say that Leigh's taste the best we have tried for a long time and our customers have seconded this.
Our gourmet salads are very popular and we have found more people are introducing meat or fish to accompany the salad to make it more filling and therefore, a main dish.
Customers can start with a base of gourmet seasonal leaves and edible flowers for £4.00 with a choice of three items from the following: cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumber, spring onion, beetroot, sweetcorn, sliced peppers, sliced olives, sun-dried tomato, artichokes, jalapenos, mixed seeds, roasted peppers in oil or sliced gherkin. They can then add additional salad items from this list for an extra 50p each.
For those who would like a more filling salad; for an extra charge you can add a topping of your choice, from these options: Aberdeen Angus steak slices, chicken breast, tuna flakes, salmon flakes, king prawns, cockles and mussels, bacon or grilled halloumi. Additional toppings are available for a small cost each which include long stem broccoli, boiled egg, poached egg, ham, grated mixed cheese or parmesan. We also recommend a side of potato gratin to accompany our salads.
We hope our customers are enjoying the new range and are always open to any feedback on our gourmet salads or other dishes as the customer is always right!