February 27, 2011


My local fruit and vegetable store is great fun to wonder around. The shelves and benches are stacked high with fresh, colourful fruit and vegetables on one side while the opposite has a massive array of local and imported cheeses. Along with theses cheeses are 101 different types of crackers, olive oils, vinegars, sugars, gourmet pastas etc.. And for all of us who love a bit of pickled herring, they have that too! Any of you who have never walked through a Harris Farm, I absolutely recommend it.

A friend of mine recently moved into the Sydney suburb of Manley, which in my opinion is one of the best places in Sydney. On one of my most recent visits I spotted the local Harris Farm and popped in for some fresh veggies for a lunch I was making.
 If I thought my local HF was impressive then this one blew my mind! I think it is one of the largest stores in Sydney. I wasn't sure if I was going to make it out on the same day as I arrived because I'd spotted an open, help yourself cheese fridge.
After trying every cheese on offer at lest three times I managed to peel myself away, stock up on the delicious Tassie Blue I was favouring then walk my way around to the freshly cut flowers and piles of fresh herbs. Whilst picking up some much needed basil I spotted a container of samphire. I have never cooked with this sea vegetable (not sure this is a real title for it?) but I have read about it often enough. I happily grabbed a container and then managed to divert my eyes to the floor until I made my way over to the cash register so I wouldn't add anymore 'extras' to my cart.

When it came to dinner the following night I was quite excited to saute the samphire with some fresh asparagus I had in the fridge. I had a roast pork in the oven and thought the salty sea flavours of the samphire would compliment it beautifully, especially if it was sauteed with a little butter and lemon.

Melting some butter in my wok I tossed in the samphire and cut asparagus. A sea fragrance permeated the air along with a lovely nut butter aroma. Once the asparagus and samphire got a little colour, I then squeezed in half a lemon, added a little cracked pepper then popped a lid on and steamed my greens for a further 5 minutes or so. I then turned the temperature off and left the lid on until I finished carving the pork and had the crisp roast potatoes on the plate.

I absolutely loved the flavour and texture. Some of the samphire was a little stringy and I should of let it steam a little more, but the overall flavour was wonderful and complimented the pork beautifully. The next time I use samphire I will cook it for a little longer and not waste any on the boys. I have to be honest and report that they didn't even try it due to the fact it was touching asparagus and if it is touching asparagus, well then, it couldn't possibly taste any good. Raw carrot and celery sticks kept them happy while Nic and I managed to eat every last bit of our greens.


Bryan said...

I enjoy picking up something new to try too, always a lot of fun, for me anyway my new dishes are usually greeted with mistrust.

I knew I had seen samphire before, it was called sea asparagus where I saw it (thanks wikipedia).

Camilla Baker said...

Love wikipedia!