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Posts from the ‘Salad’ Category

Waldorf salad with notes of anise and lemon.

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You can’t beat a really good salad, as long as said salad is texturally ‘sound’ with ample crunch factor and interesting titbits to suprise you. Salads in my house tend to be a left overs graveyard where anything goes. I like to go nuts with different colours, raw & cooked ingredients, seeds, nuts…whatever. Whack it all in, mix it up, devour. Easy as. And ideally you’ll have made enough to keep aside (undressed) for tomorrow’s lunch.

Today’s salad is the perfect companion to a barbecue on a hot summers evening. Lots of cool crunchy cos lettuce, slices of crisp apple, mandatory walnuts for aforementioned crunch factor. All you need is a small blender (or a whisk in it’s absence) and a mandolin or sharp knife and off you go. Get some friends around, pop the barbecue on and pretty up your table with this festive number. I promise they’ll love it.

Waldorf Salad with notes of anise and lemon.

For the salad:
2 apples, cored and finely sliced
1 large celery stick, finely diced
1 fennel bulb, finely sliced
1 core of a cos lettuce, leaves separated

For the dressing:
1 egg yolk
1/4 cup greek, full fat yoghurt
1 tablespoon dijon or French mustard
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
Salt and pepper

1/2 cup walnuts

Prepare the salad ingredients and pop them into a bowl of iced water whilst you prepare the dressing.

For the dressing, blend the egg yolk, yoghurt, mustard, vinegar, lemon juice and salt and pepper until smooth. Combine the oil in portions, slowly blending as you do. Taste. Add more lemon juice if you prefer more lemony tang.

Combine with salad with the dressing and walnuts and mix well.

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The benefits of Kimchi, and a Kimchi recipe.

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The Benefits of Kimchi

Kimchi is a spicy and tangy fermented food originating from Korea, where it is typically eaten with every meal, thus making it is a day-long family affair. Kimchi works well in fried rice, in spicy kimchi soup, or simply as a side dish. It is a great digestive aid to get the juices flowing before dinner. And, if you have never ventured into the world of fermented foods, Kimchi is a great place to start.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, fermented foods are a very important part of our diet and have been used in many cultures to preserve foods, aid digestion and promote the balance of health bacteria within the gut. Read more about the benefits of Fermented Foods here.

It is important to note that fermented foods (eg kimchi, sauerkraut) differ from cultured foods in that they ferment by way of bacteria naturally present in the food. Cultured foods (eg yoghurt, tempeh, kombucha) add bacteria and require a starter. Both fermented and cultured foods add ‘good’ bacteria to your digestive system, they just do so through differing processes.

With all this talk of bacteria, you’re probably wondering, “…am I going to get ill from this bacteria laden kimchi?” Let me assure you, it is only good bacteria we are talking about, and this recipe is completely safe. Keep it in the fridge once prepared though, ok?!

So, as promised, here is a delicious recipe for kimchi. Adapted from a book by Sandor Ellix Katz “Wild Fermentation”, this recipe was given to me by a delightful Gwinganna Naturopath, Sarah McKenzie, during my recent visit to the extraordinary lifestyle retreat. This is a great project to consider for the weekend as the recipe takes two days to complete.

Pop some on the table as a tasty little side. This kimchi is from Peace Love & Vegetables.
Pop some on the table as a tasty little side. This kimchi is from Peace Love & Vegetables.

Spicy Kimchi Recipe

Sea Salt (or Celtic/Himalayan)
Half a large drum cabbage
12 radishes
2 carrots
1 onion
1 large chilli
1/2 bulb of garlic
3 tablespoons fresh ginger

Mix a brine of about 1 litre of filtered water and salt to taste (approximately 1 tablespoon). Taste as you go and add the salt gradually so as not to over salt. Stir to dissolve. The brine should be salty, yet palatable.

Coarsely chop the cabbage, slice the radishes and carrot (I like to use purple carrots). Let these vegetables soak in the brine overnight, covered with a plate to submerge. At this stage you may ad other vegetable if you so wish (seaweeds, green beans, beetroot etc).

The following day, prepare the herbs and spices. Grate the ginger, chop the garlic and onion, remove the seeds from the chilli and chop finely (or throw them in whole). Kimchi can absorb a lot of spice so go for it! Don’t worry to much about perfecting quantities.

Drain the vegetables that were soaking, and reserve the brine, If the vegetables taste too salty you can give them a quick rinse with cold water. If not salty enough, add more salt and give a good stir.

Mix the vegetables with the ginger/garlic/chilli/onion paste, then pack into clean glass jars (500ml or 1 litre). Pack tightly and press down on the vegetables until the brine rises. If necessary, add a little of the reserved brine to submerge the vegetables. If you chose to screw on the lid at this stage you may want to open it every few days in order to let out some pressure. Or you may chose to cover the top of the jar with a muslin cloth and affix with a rubber band.

Ferment in your kitchen or other warm place. Taste the kimchi every day. After about a week of fermentation, and when the mix tastes ‘ripe’, affix the lid and store in the fridge. Done! This recipe will keep for a couple of months, but let’s face it, it’s quite unlikely to last that long.

Spicy Sprouted Quinoa, Apple & Kale Salad.

Well as many ‘instagrammers’ would know I’ve recently acquainted myself with sprouting. I’ve put the process off for so long having no idea where to start (as my friend Sappho can attest – thank you Sappho for being my question target!).
Firstly though, why to sprout? There are three very good reasons that you too should start this very satisfying little exercise:
  • It activates the enzymes in the food
  • It increases vitamin content and;
  • It neutralizes anti-nutrients which are otherwise very difficult for us to digest.

That’s all you need to know for now because this is not a “how to..” or “why to..” sprout post. But maybe that’s an idea for another day. Here’s a photo of my happily sprouted quinoa in any case.

Yesterday I made up a brand new recipe to make the most of the truckloads of sprouted goodness in the fridge. It was seriously tasty, full of all sorts of superfood goodness and a crunch factor to boot (essential in almost any meal I make).

Spicy Sprouted Quinoa, Apple & Kale Salad.
Serves 1 large salad, or two smaller sides.

1/2 cup sprouted quinoa
1/4 to 1/2 grated apple
1 big handful of shredded raw kale
1 dsp activated raw & ideally activated almonds (roughly chopped)
1 dsp pumpkin seeds
1 dsp sunflower seeds
1 dsp ground flaxseed or LSA
1 dsp goji berries
1 crushed garlic clove
1/4 tsp powdered ginger
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 dsp macadamia or olive oil
1 dsp lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

In a small cup mix the ginger, cayenne, garlic, salt and pepper, lemon juice and oil. Throw all other ingredients into a bowl and drizzle over the dressing, combining well. Great as a side salad or simply on its own. I can imagine grilled haloumi or chicken would be a very tasty addition. Enjoy! x

How to make my version of a salad ‘wrap’. Easy as.

I honestly think the one meal I miss the MOST since being diagnosed with a wheat intolerance about 7 years ago  is a beautiful fresh salad roll or sandwich. The whole combo of fresh multi-grain bread and beautiful fresh salad (and ham off the bone if at Christmas time) was hard to beat. But when ingredients are omitted from your diet there is always a silver lining…if you just take the time to think outside the bread bin/box. I have become very sensitive to my body’s daily fuel requirements and it’s clear to me that I need good quality protein in at least 2 of my meals each day. Eggs (or ‘magic bullets’) and I have a very close relationship and are my very favourite protein source. So I would like to share the recipe for my anti-bread salad wrap. Don’t blink or you really will miss it.

Egg Salad Wrap
Give 2 eggs a really good whisk or beat. Finely chop a heaped teaspoon of parsley and mix into the eggs with a little salt and pepper. Heat oil (I use coconut oil) in a small omelette pan. Once the pan is hot pour in the eggy mixture and whirl it around the pan. As the edges are just drying, with your spatula drag the mixture into the centre allowing the wet egg mixture to fall to the sides. Do this around the pan until it looks almost cooked. Then flip the omelette over and cook the other side, for about 1-2 minutes. Turn onto a plate and lay along one end your chopped salad ingredients. Then very carefully roll your wrap up, cut in half and hey presto – an eggy wrap!

You can add whatever salad ingredients you like but I suggest the following are essential additions: chopped cherry tomatoes, avocado, herbs (heaps and any!), rocket or spinach.

Enjoy x