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Sometimes Will works away during the week, and whilst I miss him when he’s not at home I use the opportunity to indulge in my favourite faux-single gal activities. Because I am cool and hip these often include cleaning until the whole house smells bleachy, watching crap TV like The Real Housewives of The OC/NYC and eating food for dinner that Will doesn’t like. Sometimes I even take a bath or wax some body parts; it can get wild.
Two foods that I don’t get to eat much are beetroot and mackerel. Will dislikes them both, though in the early days of our relationship he ate my kedgeree on more than one occasion because he is a polite boy who didn’t want to hurt my feelings. One of my favourite spring/summer recipes is a salad that contains both mackerel and beetroot and I eat it often when he is away and I am alone for lunch or dinner.
I love salads but sometimes they aren’t substantial enough for dinner – the addition of sweet potato to this one means it fills me up til morning, plus you have the added bonus of both mackerel and beetroot being so-called ‘superfoods’. Should you be on a low-carb diet the sweet potato can also be substituted for roast butternut squash.
As if the mackerel and beetroot wasn’t enough brilliance on its own, this salad is also served with a side of horseradish cream. I love horseradish. I love cream. I love mackerel. I love beetroot. This is basically heaven on a plate.
Lest you think that all mackerel is created equal (it isn’t), think carefully before purchasing your fillets. I always make a special effort to buy Tesco’s Sweetcure Mackerel fillets which are cured with sugar and then smoked over hickory logs. It gives the mackerel a delicious sweet taste that I think is better than plain old smoked mackerel.
- 2 mackerel fillets
- 1 sweet potato
- 4 small cooked beetroots
- A few sprigs of thyme
- 2 tbsp creme fraiche (I have also used sour cream in this recipe which worked fine)
- 1 teaspoon horseradish
- A quarter of a bag of rocket salad
- Peel and chop the sweet potato into cubes; place in a baking tray with the fresh thyme and a slug of olive oil. Cook in the oven at 180 degrees for around 40 minutes, or until soft.
- Meanwhile shred the mackerel fillets and discard the skins. Cube the beetroot and wash your hands right afterwards!
- Throw the mackerel, beetroot and salad leaves into a large bowl. Add the sweet potato as soon as it's cooked with the oil it was cooked in. Mix well.
- In a small dish mix the creme fraiche with the horseradish and serve.