Michael Rantissi believes in finding the most beautiful ingredient – a tomato or beetroot, for example – and then making that the hero by preparing it simply and dressing it with a few other things that bring out its beautiful flavours. His salads feature simple ingredients and can be eaten as side dishes with your main course, or as a meal on their own. They also make excellent lunches, if you take yours to work.

Beetroot and salmon salad

serves 4–6 as a side dish

The beetroot and salmon really complement each other and, once the roasting is done, this is so quick to assemble. Serve this salmon salad on croutons with good-quality mayonnaise for fantastic finger food, or as part of a summer mezze plate.

400g beetroot
300g salmon fillets, skin off and pin boned
65g (1 cup) chopped spring onions (scallions)
1 small horseradish, grated (see note below)
1½ tbsp good-quality extra-virgin olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
1 tbsp coriander seeds, lightly toasted and coarsely crushed
baby beetroot leaves (beet greens), to garnish

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Wash the beetroot, wrap them individually in foil and place on a baking tray. Bake for 40 minutes, until a knife easily goes through the unwrapped beetroot. Unwrap the beetroot and allow to cool.

Once they are cool enough to handle, peel the beetroot and cut them into 1cm cubes. Put the beetroot in a large bowl.

Cut the salmon into cubes roughly the same size as the beetroot.

Add the salmon, spring onion, horseradish, olive oil, lemon juice and coriander seeds to the beetroot and gently mix to combine. Season with freshly ground black pepper and garnish with baby beetroot leaves.

Note: The horseradish will be hot, so grate a quantity according to your liking.