Lettuce can be as fancy or as boring as you want it to be. Summer is on the way and salads occupy most of our plate space, so lets put a few delicious slants on that idea.

  • San Choy Bow – delicious and crunchy with Carrot, ginger and chilli quick pickle

Use a lettuce that is crisp and will hold a shape so that you can fill with mince

Cook 500 grams of chicken or pork mince in a wok, with 1 finely chopped onion, 1 garlic clove crushed, 1 teaspoon grated ginger, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 1 teaspoon fish sauce and 1 tablespoon soy sauce. Stir together until cooked – put aside.

Grate 1 carrot, 2 cm knob ginger grated, 1 chilli chopped. Place in glass jar and pour over heated sushi vinegar – cool.

Fill the lettuce cups with the mince, top with quick carrot pickle

  • Braised Cos Lettuce with mint and peas

Heat a little butter in the pan, add finely chopped onion and saute, cut cos into wedges and place on top of the onion (leaving the base on the lettuce so it stays together), pour in 2 cups of peas & 4 tablespoons water or chicken stock, lid on and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve topped with Greek style yoghurt and generous amount of mint leaves.

  • Anchovy and Caper Dressing

Process together – 6 anchovy fillets, 2 tablespoons capers, 2 cloves garlic, 1/4 cup basil leaves, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, juice 1 lemon, 2 tablespoons brown sugar and 1 cup olive oil.

This is a delicious dressing – great tossed through salad greens or drizzled over thick tomato slices with bocconcini cheese

It stores well in the refrigerator but remember it has anchovies so it won’t store forever.