Monday 8 August 2011

Bargain finds at KOA and Honeysuckle Salad

I know summer's here when the KOA shop is open in the village. This year the money is being raised to help young people in Ghana. I found these baking pans there including a nice bunt pan; and some garden vegetables, perfect for summer salads. Thankfully not everything got eaten on the walk home...I can't resist those tiny baby courgettes...

(oh and a cute little fish knife...I know it's not much use alone but I like it and I'm sure it'll come to good use for something...)

I used the courgettes to make a garden salad with baby spinach leaves, cooked sweet potato, walnuts and tangy Persian feta cheese. Dressed with pumpkin seed oil and Balsamic vinegar it was a perfect balance of sweet and savoury...mmm...

I was really pleased to get the green beans at just 30p a bunch, as you can see mine are still too tiny to pick. They were delicious in a mixed salad with baby cos lettuce leaves, radishes, spring and red onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, boiled egg, carrot shavings, honeysuckle flowers and dill from my rubbish bin bed! This time I made a dressing with honey, grainy Dijon mustard, olive oil, a little sea salt and Balsamic vinegar.

I'm obsessively reading Jekka's Complete Herb Book (the revised edition) written by Jamie Oliver's friend, Jekka McVicar and discovered that not only are honeysuckle flowers edible but you can also make tea from them that tastes fragrantly delicious, is used for treating coughs, catarrh and asthma, as a lotion is good for skin infections; and "has an outstanding curative action in cases of colitis." ...well blow me... hence the use of flowers in the salad...and the copious mugs of honeysuckle tea I'm consuming...

you can see other peoples finds this week here


  1. Sounds like a fantastic little shop for a very worthy cause. Those salads look so colourful and healthy - good luck with the honeysuckle flowers - you'll be a new woman soon by the sounds of it!

  2. Those salads look wonderful. Thanks for the tip about the honeysuckle too. When I was growing up we had an enormous honeysuckle plant covering the side of Dad's bungalow (his retreat where he kept most of his books). We used to pick off the flowers and suck the sweet ends. I don't have any honeysuckle around at the moment but I do need a new creeper for the side fence as the new bathroom has a big window looking out on a picket fence!

  3. I had no idea that honeysuckle was edible Caz, until reading Jekka's herbs...I always thought that like the berries the flowers were poisonous. I would have fainted if I'd seen Hannah sucking seems your parents where much more up to scratch with their knowledge of local flora...shame she was missing out on all that goodness.

    I love the sent of honeysuckle ours have gone wild and need to be cut right back in the autumn. They would make a beautiful view from your window, perfect against the picket fence, and just imagine the sent in the summer with the bathroom window open. They would bring back such lovely memories for you too.