Beef salad-Salade de Boeuf

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A great salad that is usually found on all Romanian tables during Christmas, but not only.

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Although it bears a French name, this salad is entirely Romanian. The French prepare something similar but with a different sauce and only with vegetables, while the Romanians add to it beef. The French call their mixture Macedoine. The Germans mix as well meat, pickles and boiled vegetables and they call it Berliner. The Slavs call it A la Russe and they don't add meat at all. So, here is the original pure Romanian Salade de Boeuf (even Romanians use the French name)- Notes from Radu Anton Roman- "Foods, wines and Romanian traditions".

Ingredients:

* 700 gr meat
* 700 gr potatoes
* 300 gr pickled (in vinegar not salty water) cucumbers
* 500 gr carrots (or pease)
* 3 pickled bellpeppers
* 500 ml mayonnaise
* salt, mustard, oil

Preparation:

Boil the meat until soften. Also boil the carrots, potatoes, pease (if not canned) separately until they soften a bit. Peel and let them cool down.

Cut the meat, cucumbers, bellpeppers, potatoes, carrots in very small cubes of the size of a dice. In a big bowl, mix all the ingredients with 3/4 of mayonnaise, a spoon of oil, 2 of mustard, a bit of lemon juice, salt, pepper. Place the mixture on a large plate and level it to look like a birthday cake. Spread the remaining mayonnaise and use your imagination to decorate it. Use as decoration pieces of hard boiled egg whites, olives, pickled red bellpeppers, parsli etc. Hint: You can use other type of meat: chicken, turkey or white fish (no salmon). If you add couple of apples, the taste will become really fine and exquisite. Also mushrooms (crude or canned) or hot spices are an extra option.

To be served as an appetizer with Chardonnay, Sauvignon.

(The Romanian name of the dish: Salata de Boeuf)

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