Salamagundi – An eighteenth century salad of little plates

This early salad dates back to the 1700’s and included a selection of little plates, such as:

Shredded lettuce

Minced pickled herring

Cucumber

Chopped onion with tarragon

Chopped celery

Pickled red cabbage

Hard boiled eggs, separated into white and yolk chopped

Orange and lemon slices

Chopped cooked chicken

An apple sliced thin

All strewn about with watercress, nasturtium flowers and violets.  A dressing would be placed in a little jug on the side.

English Salad Sauce Eliza Acton 1845 – with slightly less salt and sugar than the original

2 hard boiled eggs, yolks only

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp caster sugar

a pinch cayenne

either 150ml cream (or a modern version, 6 tblsp olive oil

2 tblsp wine vinegar

chopped shallot or anchovy may be added if you wish.

Boil the eggs for 15 minutes so the yolks are really hard.  Let them get completely cold.  Mix the sugar, salt and cayenne.  Mash the yolks (add a spoon of water if using cream) and mix them in.  Add the cream/olive oil by degrees and then the vinegar stirring briskly. This is also good drizzled over hot green vegetables.  KEEP IN FRIDGE, COVERED FOR MAX 2 DAYS.

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