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Cucumber and poppy seed salad

9 May

Cucumber and poppy seed salad

This salad of cucumber and red chilli tossed in a zingy-sweet dressing takes minutes to prepare.

I like to give it a little time in the fridge – half an hour is enough – for the cucumber to get cool and crisp, and the chilli heat to work its way into the dressing. Continue reading

Fennel and mixed leaf salad

16 Mar

Fennel and mixed leaf salad

With its croutons and shavings of Parmesan, this simple salad is reminiscent of a Caesar, but the fennel takes it somewhere new.

It’s a much fresher affair, and one of my favourite lunches when I’m working from home.

I keep the dressing to a minimum so as not to overwhelm the tender salad leaves. Continue reading

Roast squash and chickpea salad with tahini dressing

7 Feb

Roast squash and chickpea salad

This roast squash and chickpea salad with tahini dressing is becoming a favourite winter lunch around ours.

It’s lovely served with the squash still warm from the oven, and keeps well in the fridge. I bring it back to room temperature before serving, and freshen up the seasoning. Continue reading

Romanesco apple pecan salad

31 Dec

Romanesco apple pecan salad

This healthy, Christmas-y (not so often you use those two adjectives to describe a dish) romanesco apple pecan salad makes a refreshing change from turkey soup and turkey sandwiches at this point in the festivities.

And aside from steaming the romanesco, it takes only minutes to put together – another point in its favour.

I serve the dressing on the side – once it is mixed through the salad, the romanesco florets are less delightfully tree-like. If romanesco isn’t available, broccoli works too. Continue reading

Rosolli (Finnish root vegetable salad)

14 Dec

Rosolli salad

Rosolli is a Finnish root vegetable salad traditionally served at Christmas. What I enjoy most about it is the satisfying mixture of textures, from soft potato to the crunch of gherkin.

Crème fraiche and vinegar bring a sharpness to the dressing, balancing out the natural sweetness of the beets and carrots.

Continue reading

Roast carrots with pomegranate molasses

8 Dec

roast-carrots-with-pomegranate2

In January my friend Margaret sent me a copy of the gorgeous “A Taste of Haida Gwaii” by the Canadian writer Susan Musgrave.

This wonderful collection of stories, recipes and photographs documents Musgrave’s life in the islands, where she is proprietor of The Copper Beach bed and breakfast. Continue reading

Roasted cauliflower couscous salad

5 Dec

roasted cauliflower couscous salad

I’m pretty organised with food shopping and meal planning, but even so, there are regular occasions when I just need to get something to eat on the table in minutes.

Leftovers are a lifesaver at such times, or a quick pasta like linguine with sardine pesto or pasta cacio e pepe. Eggs are good — scrambled, fried, or in an omelette or frittata.

And there’s usually a tub of salad that can be combined with some toasted pitta, hummus, olives and chopped vegetables for what we call a “lunchy dinner”. While it’s often kisir or tabbouleh, this roasted cauliflower couscous salad has recently joined the rotation.

Roasted cauliflower softens without going mushy, and has a deep, almost nutty taste. I find that the textures of the cauliflower and couscous really complement one another. Continue reading