Winter Leaves with Gherkins and Mustard

Nigel Slater

Feeds 4


4 double handfuls of white chicory, frisee or other crisp, bitter winter leaves

a large bunch of watercress


For the dressing :

a large egg yolk

50gm Parmesan, finely grated

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon white wine vinegar

100ml mild olive oil

2 tablespoons, finely chopped gherkins

1 teaspoon capers, rinsed


To make the dressing, put the egg yolk into a food processor, add the grated Parmesan, mustard and wine vinegar and switch the machine on. Pour in the oil rather slowly, as if you were making mayonnaise. Stop adding it when you have a smooth sauce that is thin enough to fall slowly from a spoon. Stir in the chopped gherkins and rinsed capers. Add no salt.


Rinse and trim the salad leaves, removing any tough stalks from the watercress. Spin or shake dry. Gently toss the leaves in the dressing and pile on to plates.