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Salad Leaves

A wide variety of lettuces and herbs with different coloured and flavoured leaves are the main constituents of salad. Leaves can be used for looks, flavour, or both. For example, red leaves have a bitter flavour, and like peppery green rocket, need to be offset by more delicate flavours. To make a mixed salad, you need a good combination of textures and flavours. Lamb’s lettuce (corn salad or mache), is slightly nutty in flavour. Purslane has a slightly sour, peppery taste. Young beet leaves (buy attached to the root) have a good green colour and earthy flavour and mizuna has dark green, feathery and glossy leaves. Mustard leaves are pungent, and crisp lettuce leaves like cos add crunch. Both the flower and the peppery leaf of the nasturtium can be used in salad, as well as herbs such as mint, chervil and basil.