Potatoes, meet rapeseed oil. You guys are going to get along famously.

As much as I enjoy experimenting with food, when it comes to cooking oils, I’m utterly stuck in my ways. Sure, I’ve flirted with coconut oil and usually use sesame oil in Asian recipes, but beyond that I tend to opt for good old olive oil in practically every situation – despite knowing deep down that the low smoke point makes it better off out of the pan.

But as it turns out, there’s a whole world of cooking oils out there I’ve been ignoring – from peanut oil and palm oil to the hippie-sounding hemp oil. So when the team behind Borderfields, producers of excellent cold-pressed British rapeseed oil got in touch to see if I’d like to give their products a go, it seemed like the ideal opportunity to get out of an olive rut.

Made from the rapeseed plant, this dark yellow oil has been touted as one of the healthiest oils in the world, due to its high quantities of omega 3, 6 and 9 as well as Vitamin E. With a light flavour it can be used in everything from baking cakes to drizzling on salads, and the high smoke point means it keeps its nutritional value at munch higher temperatures than other cooking oils (I’m looking at you, olive oil).

You can find it in its pure, cold-pressed form or buy infused versions with flavours such as chilli, garlic and lemon for an extra kick in your cooking. For this recipe I went for a super simple salad to show off the oil, as well as making the most of the fact that quails eggs are oddly cheap here in France – at 2€ for 18 eggs, cheaper than the usual half-dozen of hens eggs I buy, it seemed mad not to use them! However you can also use regular hens eggs in this recipe instead of quails eggs if they are proving difficult to find.

quailseggs

Ingredients

Serves 4

  • 8 quails eggs
  • 500g baby new potatoes
  • 150 petit pois
  • 150g green beans, trimmed and sliced into thirds
  • Borderfields rapeseed oil
  • 1 lemon
  • Salt n’ Pepa

To cook the quails eggs, bring salted water to the boil and turn down to simmer. Add the eggs gently, and cook for 2.5 minutes for soft-boiled, or around 3 minutes for hard boiled. Drain, rinse with cold water, then carefully peel and slice in half once cool enough to touch.

Chop the baby new potatoes into quarters, and boil in a pan of salted water until they can easily be pricked with a fork. Add the green beans and the peas and cook for a further 2 minutes. Drain, return to the pan and gently chuff the potatoes until some begin to break apart. Drizzle with a generous amount of rapeseed oil and a large squeeze of lemon juice (you can also use lemon-infused rapeseed oil for even more flavour), add salt and pepper, and mix.

Heap the potato salad onto a plate, and place the quails eggs on top. Add a touch more salt and pepper to taste and a final drizzle of rapeseed oil before tucking in.

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