When is a salad not a salad? When it comes from The A-Z of Cooking. There is no way in the world that I would call this a salad. It’s much more of a dip. But The A-Z calls it a salad so, Walnut and Avocado Salad it is. Even if we all secretly know it’s a dip.
This was kind of….meh. And you know what? I strongly recommend that you make guac instead. Because a good guac is awesome! But first, there is an elephant in the room and it needs to be addressed. You may be thinking that because we have labelled something a salad when it is quite clearly a dip that we have reached S. Not so fast there Speedy. We’re actually still at R. How so? Refreshing Salads. Yeah, I know I should have ceased to be surprised at the randomness of The A-Z by now. But it’s ONE letter..it’s at the back of the Chapter, right next to the start of the S’s. Couldn’t they have? Shouldn’t they have? Why didn’t they?
But wait, there’s more. When I turned the page over to “Refreshing Salads” my eye was caught by the words Greek Salata. Now, I LOVE a Greek Salad. Feta, olives, tomatoes….bring it on! My mouth was already watering as I contemplated
making eating one. In my mind, a Greek Salad should look exactly like this one from the Food Network:
So imagine my horror when my eyes were what can only be described as assaulted by this disgrace:
Oh. My. Lord. Have you ever seen anything quite so hideous in your life? Sadly, I have. Because even as I was recoiling in horror, I realised I had seen something quite so hideous before. In fact I had seen something exactly as fugly before because I had not only seen but posted on that very picture. Right here.
WTF? To paraphrase Lady Bracknell, to use this picture in one book may be regarded as misfortune; to use it in two looks like a blatant disregard for the eyes of one’s readers. But then I was intrigued. So, I went back to The Hot Weather Cookbook and flicked through it and there were six other photos IDENTICAL to those in The A-Z of Cooking! They share a publisher, Octopus Books but neither book acknowledges that content previously appeared in the other.
Now, it also just so happens that one of the photos that was replicated in both books was the mysterious Mango Mousse which I spoke about here.
Now I know that the mystery of what that is a picture of, seeing as it is quite clearly NOT a mango mousse has been keeping all of us awake since I first posted it back in March of 2015 (and yikes, has it really taken me over two years to cook through this book?). And who knew that I had the key to the mystery within my grasp the entire time? Because, if you look at page 113 of the Hot Weather Cookbook where the same recipe for Mango Mousse appears, there is a reference at the bottom of the page to the pictures contained overleaf – Orange Soufflé (page 114). Which is our mango mousse picture.
And, if we flick back to the recipe of Orange Soufflé? Oranges, passionfruit, cream eggs….I’m totally ignoring the random bananas but I think we have a contender!
Mystery solved. I feel like a culinary Mulder and Scully. I have been tossing up as to whether I should take up one of those Hunt A Killer subscriptions I keep hearing about on all my podcasts. After this bit of sleuthing I am a step closer to putting my detective skills to the test. It’s damn expensive to get it shipped to Australia though! Is anyone else doing it? If you are, please let me know!
BTW, just to take us back to the Avocado and Walnut Salad? The bread shown with it is the Cheddar and Apple Foccacia from The Hot Bread Kitchen Cookbook by Jessamyn Waldman Rodriguez. And it was delicious! This is a wonderful book too!
Have a wonderful week! Next up, I’m taking a bit of a break from The A-Z and making some lovely old-fashioned biscuits, perfect for afternoon tea! Why not pour yourself an Earl Grey and join me?