Pork, caper and heartsease salad with mustard dressing

A tasty Sunday salad lunch for two.

Mmmm, flowery goodness.

I adore capers. I love them best when pickled so they have a sharp, sweet, salty flavour. Capers are the bud of the caper bush (Capparis spinosa) which grows widely in the Mediterranean region and is also known in Australia as the Flinders Rose. The flower looks nothing like a rose but is very beautiful none-the-less.

Caper Bush flower and buds
By Bernadette Simpson (Flickr)

This recipe combines the delicious caper bud with some beautiful heartsease flowers, pork and a mustardy dressing. I’ve served it on baby cos leaves, laid out in a flower shape.  It made a lovely Sunday lunch and got the big D seal of approval. It would be lovely with some fresh crusty bread or kumara/sweet potatoes on the side.

Serves 2


  • 1 free range pork sirloin steak
  • 1 t dripping or lard
  • 1 baby cos lettuce
  • 2 radishes
  • 1 T capers
  • 14 fresh heartsease flowers
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 T apple cider vinegar
  • 1 t rapadura or soft brown sugar
  • 3 T extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper


  • Heat a heavy frying pan over a high heat and melt some dripping or lard in it.
  • Season pork steak with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Place the steak in the pan and fry until brown on one side. Season.  Turn the heat down to medium low.
  • Turn over and fry until the juices start rising through the meat.

Pork steak sizzling in the pan.

  • Turn over and fry for one more minute. Set aside
  • Wash and dry your baby cos lettuce and separate out eight large leaves.
  • Arrange on a plate.
  • Slice the radishes very finely with a sharp knife or mandoline.
  • Chop up the heart of the lettuce and mix with the radish.
  • Place in the centre of the plate.

Cos lettuce leaves and sliced radish arranged on the plate

  • Season and sprinkle over the capers.
  • Place the oil, vinegar, sugar, mustard and some salt and pepper in a jar with a lid
  • Shake until mixed.
  • Slice your steak into at least eight pieces.
  • Place on the plate, sprinkle over the heartsease flowers and drizzle with dressing.
  • Eat and swoon at the flowery, piggy goodness (not a common phrase but one that should be used more often).

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