broccoli stir fry with red rice and oriental sauce

Again old recipe inspired by Tesco magazine I used to collect when I was shopping there. I rarely buy from Tesco nowadays but this stir fry was very good. And because at the moment we are in a stage of trying different things I went back to this recipe. We eat less meat now so we’ve decided to incorporate rice and some grains into our diet. And soon we’re planing to make our own bread, so if it will be somehow successful I will post you about that.

We try not to label foods as good – keto and not good – carbs. Rather – nutritious or not nutritious. The one that actually serving us and not serving. And because recently we don’t eat so much meat as before, we need to replace it with other foods. And will see, in couple months we might come back to keto if we won’t be entirely happy with this meal plan. And as we both work full time, I try to make our diet as flexible as possible, so it meet the needs of both of us. And I would rather call it a lifestyle than a diet, because the word “diet” is associated with some kind of restrictions. And it’s more a matter of our own choice, not something imposed in advance by someone else. It seems to me that it’s just a healthier approach, that gives more freedom and does not make us feel guilty if for some reason we “go off the road”.

Our chosen type of rice is either brown, red, black or wild.

White rice is the most popular variety of rice, but the least nutritious. In the production of white rice grains, the top layers are removed along with the most valuable vitamins, minerals and fiber. As with most of the grains, the husk contains the most nutritional value, if we remove the husk, we will have pure carbohydrates. Brown rice is rich in numerous nutrients, as it is only deprived of inedible husk. Its grains remain “unclean”, and therefore contain fiber, magnesium, iron and B vitamins. They also have high fiber content. Red and black rice is paddy, medium grain, very similar to brown but with a red or black husk. It contains many valuable nutrients. Of course, it all depends on where (on what soil) the rice is grown, as the nutrient content also depends on it. And whether pesticides or other chemicals have been used in its cultivation. Unfortunately, we are not always able to check this. Most of the times we can only trust that we buy a healthy product.

If you like oriental flavours this recipe will be perfect for you – mix of sweet, spicy tangy and salty taste with amazing aroma of sesame seed oil. Sesame seed oil so flavoursome, makes the whole kitchen smell like in a oriental restaurant.

I used red bell pepper to make this stir fry, but if you’re a fan of really spicy flavours you can add chilli peppers instead. Or simply add both. Red rice was my choice, but you can either use brown or wild rice – they both will work perfectly. All of them are very aromatic with a nice nutty flavour.


broccoli stir fry with red rice and oriental sauce


NOTE: my cup is regular 250ml glass

INGREDIENTS for stir fry:

  • 1 broccoli
  • 1 red sweet pepper (you can use chilli pepper instead of sweet)
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • bunch of spring onions
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup of red rice
  • 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds

INGREDIENTS for sauce:

  • 1 tbsp of miso paste
  • 1 inch (2.5cm) fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped or pressed through a press
  • 1 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp of rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce

DIRECTIONS

Boil the rice in salted water until tender. In a bowl, combine all the sauce ingredients and let it sit for a while.

Wash your broccoli, divide it into florets. Chop spring onions, cut the pepper into thin strips, ginger in very thin slices. Heat the olive oil in a wok and add broccoli. Season with salt and fry over a large heat until golden and semi-soft, add pepper and half of spring onions. Fry for a while, then add garlic and ginger chopped into thin slices.

Mix fried vegetables with cooked rice, pour over prepared sauce, sprinkle with sesame seeds and the rest of spring onions.

Bon Appetit!

grilled aubergine and chickpeas salad with sumac dressing

I’m a sucker for a good salad. Recently salads became my go to lunch options, I just open my fridge early in the morning and I pack my luchbox with bunch of veg with occasional addition of meat, cheese or egg. Sometimes it’s even hard to call it a salad, it rather looks like someone placed randomly some foods with splash of olive oil and cream cheese on top (oh, cream cheese is like ice cream for keto-people – yummy). But at 6am that’s sometimes the pinnacle of my abilities.

If I’m more fancy and I get myself together to prepare something on the evening before, it looks more like that.

Although this one looks and tastes much better when freshly made, rather than on a next day, when aubergine becomes a bit soggy and discoloured. Grilled aubergine (and courgette…and peppers… and mushrooms…oh and onion) tastes like heaven, so before I even managed to complete preparing this salad for photos half of it was eaten by my partner (nightmare of food blogers – while you setting up a photo shoot space, your other half shouting from the kitchen: “will you need that veg? I already ate some!”)

Definitely I need to remember that I love grilled aubergine, and use more often my grilling pan that lives on the bottom of the cupboard – forgotten. Apart from being delicious, aubergine is simply beautiful with it’s shiny dark purple firm skin, I’m always amazed by their look. Technically aubergine is a fruit, but I guess apart from bunch of pen-pushers thinking about how to classify a plant or at what angle should the banana curve, no one cares. Aubergine is versatile – it can be baked, mashed into a dip, roast, grilled and cooked – as it easily absorbs other flavours, so it works great in meals rich in spices – like curry’s and stews. Aubergines have a high water content with almost no cholesterol or fat and are a source of vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, dietary fiber, folic acid, potassium, and manganese.

They are though a part of the nightshade family – which also include tomato and bell peppers – and in some cases are known to cause severe allergic reactions. So if you’ve never tried aubergine before and you have a history of food allergies , keep it in mind.

For the lucky ones that can eat aubergine without limits here’s a delicious recipe 🙂


grilled aubergine and chickpeas salad with sumac dressing


INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 small aubergine
  • 150g can of chickpeas
  • baby salad leaves (spinach, different types of lettuce)
  • handful of cherry tomatoes
  • piece of feta cheese
  • 1 tsp sumac
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of black pepper
  • juice from 1/2 lemon
  • couple tbsp olive oil

DIRECTIONS

Heat up a grill pan, drizzle a little bit of olive oil. Cut aubergine in about half inch (1-1.5cm) slices and grill couple minutes on each side. Set aside to cool down.

Prepare dressing: finely chop garlic (or use garlic press), crush it with pinch of salt, add lemon juice, olive oil, black pepper and sumac.

In a large bowl place a bunch of baby salad leaves, arrange slices of aubergine (you can chop them in smaller pieces), halves of cherry tomatoes and chickpeas. Crumble some feta cheese on top and drizzle with sumac dressing. Serve fresh.

You can store it in the fridge for up to two days, but it tastes the best when fresh.

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Indian style vegetable curry

This Indian style veggie curry recently became one of our favourite meals. What’s great about it is that it’s extremely easy and quick to make. Perfect when you don’t have much time to cook, but you still want something nourishing and hearty. It’s full of flavour one pot meal you can prepare, using different veggies you have in your fridge. Mushrooms are the most important though. You can swap cauliflower with broccoli, courgettes and aubergine with other veggies (root veg for example). I chose the one that are most low carb.

Choose closed cup baby mushrooms – they are the best for this recipe. They are small, so there’s no need to chop them, they won’t become soggy while cooking. Baby mushrooms will remain firm and juicy, perfect for one bite. There’s no need to add any meat to this curry.

I chose mild curry powder – feel like mild flavour goes better with veggies, but I you like more spicy curry, try adding hot curry powder or sprinkle your curry with chilli flakes. Also I wouldn’t be myself if I wouldn’t add garlic for even more delicious flavour. But if you don’t like smell or taste of garlic you can skip it in the recipe.

Also choose good quality coconut milk. There’s plenty of choices, but various coconut milk can differ a lot. Look for the simplest list of ingredients: coconut extract and water. If you can, try to stay away from the ones that contains emulgators, stabilisers, starches and emulsifiers. Also look what’s the percentage of coconut extract it contains – the more the better.

You can serve your curry with multiple additions like rice, quinoa, bulgur wheat or on its own, or with piece of naan bread.


vegetable curry


INGREDIENTS:

  • 500 g baby mushrooms
  • 1 small cauliflower
  • 1 small courgette
  • 1 small aubergine
  • handful of cherry tomatoes
  • spring onion for garnish
  • 450 ml coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • about 2 tsp mild curry powder (or hot curry powder if you like)
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • salt to taste

DIRECTIONS

Thoroughly wash all veggies. Divide cauliflower in small florets. Chop courgette and aubergine. Heat large, deep frying pan (or wok) adding one tablespoon of coconut oil. Fry cauliflower first, on high heat, until slightly golden, then add baby mushrooms. Fry for couple minutes, then add courgette, aubergine, curry powder, turmeric, chopped garlic and sprinkle with salt.

Add coconut milk and lower the heat, let it simmer for couple minutes – mushroom should be still firm and juicy. At the end of cooking add halves of cherry tomatoes. Garnish with spring onions before serving.

Serve on its own, it will also taste great with rice, couscous, bulgur wheat or quinoa.

Store in the fridge for about 2-3 days.

Enjoy!

red slaw with wasabi & avocado dressing

Recently red slaw is my go to side salad, I just add different spices or dressings. It’s so quick and easy to make. And cabbage stays fresh for quite a long time, so I can keep it in my fridge for a while without the risk that after one or two days it will go off.

I love the crunchiness of this slaw mixed with creamy avocado dressing. It’s so good that my partner ate all of it even though he’s not really a fan of avocado. Addition of wasabi gives lots of tangy flavour to gentle and nutty avocado. Mayo is always good, there’s no point for discussion 😉 But if somehow you don’t like mayonnaise, I think if you add Greek yogurt would work as well.

This dressing would also work as a dip for crackers, chips, veggies, it’s nicely thick and creamy. Not that I would encourage you to eat chips or crackers, but if it happens, keep in mind that mix of mayo, avocado and wasabi is delicious. Smeared generously over the freshly toasted ciabatta bread with couple cherry tomatoes also sounds amazing, but I didn’t say that 😉

You see, plenty of ideas already how to use this avocado and wasabi dressing, you might never get bored with your food.

red slaw with wasabi & avocado dressing

INGREDIENTS for red slaw:

  • quarter of a small red cabbage
  • 1 small brown onion
  • 1 small carrot
  • pinch of salt

INGREDIENTS for dressing:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • about 2-3 tsp wasabi
  • about 1 tbsp mayonnaise
  • pinch of lemon pepper
  • couple drops of lemon or lime juice

DIRECTIONS

Shred the cabbage, finely chop onion and grate the carrot. Combine all veggies together, sprinkle with pinch of salt and set aside.

Smash avocado using a fork or a blender if you want extra smooth texture. Add mayonnaise, pepper, couple drops of lemon juice and spice it up with wasabi. Add as much wasabi as you like – to make it more or less spicy.

Combine your dressing with red slaw just before serving. Avocado oxidise strongly, so with time your dip becomes rather greyish colour (addition of lemon juice helps but it will not remain nicely green for long time). So always keep it in air tight container and mix with slaw before serving.

If you don’t mind muddy colour you can mix it all straight away.

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lazy oat and carrot bake

I saw this baked oats dessert idea so many times on Instagram that I could not resist and finally tried it as well. It’s a kind of TikTok recipe, where you put together couple ingredients, that sometimes doesn’t really go together, and prepare in a way you usually wouldn’t choose (like making mash potatoes from potato crisps). And I didn’t even plan to post this recipe (it’s even hard to call this a recipe), especially that I really dislike the photos I’ve made. But came out that this dessert or breakfast idea is actually quite tasty and we’ve ate all in one and a half day.

So if you’d need to choose between buying a pack of oat bars (or pack of doughnuts), and making a little bit more healthy (and definitely cheaper) choice, I think this kind of oat bake is perfect. Especially that you can add whatever you like to this combination: nuts, raisins, peanut butter, fruits, chocolate, you can either use any plant milk you like or cow’s milk if that your choice. And it literally took me couple minutes to mix all ingredients in a baking dish. So even though it’s not my “go to” food choice, as I try to avoid lots of carbs, if I would like to treat myself with some home baked goodies I would choose this one.

I chose a mix of carrot and cinnamon, and all my sweetness comes from carrots, one banana and raisins that were already in my oat mix. For me that was just enough and I didn’t need any addition of any sort of sugar or sugar replacement. For you though it might be different, so don’t feel restricted by that. You can either add more banana or after baking drizzle it with some honey. Seriously this recipe gives you so many options, that each time you can make absolutely new taste with changing only one or two ingredients.

Because this kind of “recipes” usually doesn’t tell you the exact amounts of ingredients, I was just eye-balling the amounts of milk and oats. So feel free to experiment. From the amounts I’ve added my oats were quite dry – more like an soft oat bar, than actual porridge. But it was nice and crispy on top – especially when hot straight from the oven. If you add much more milk, you’ll get more loose and moisture texture.

I’ve popped couple pieces of organic raw chocolate – they’ve melted nicely over the hot oats. Also added some pumpkin and sunflower seeds to make it more nutritious and filling. I had a mix of oats, nuts and raisins, but if you have plain porridge oats they will work as well. Enjoy making your own mix of your favourite flavours.

lazy oat and carrot bake

NOTE: my measuring cup is 250ml regular glass

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 cups of oats (mix of oats, nuts and raisins)
  • 2 cups of plant milk of your choice (I had almond)
  • 1 banana
  • 3 small carrots
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • coconut oil or butter to grease the baking dish
  • optionally: pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, dark chocolate (I used 85% organic cacao chocolate)

DIRECTIONS

Grate the carrots, finely chop banana. Smear coconut oil or butter all over your baking dish. Add oats, grated carrots, banana, cinnamon and seeds if you have them. Give it a good stir, so all ingredients will combine and spread evenly in a baking dish. Pour over with plant milk. Texture of my bake was quite dry – like soft oat bar, if you’d like more porridge like consistency add more milk.

Preheat the oven to about 170-180°C, bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, add pieces of chocolate. Serve hot or cold. Although I think tests the best when hot and crunchy on top.

Enjoy!

chocolate chia pudding

Really low carb themed dessert today, not sweet for most of the people, for me sweet enough to be a dessert 🙂 Obviously you can alter this recipe to your liking and needs. Personally I love combination of chocolate (cacao) and raspberries, and warmth of pudding mixed with frozen fruits, that’s melting over it. Add some chocolate on top and you don’t need anything else.

You can use various types of milk to prepare it, I had almond, but I think hazelnut would taste delicious, kind of nutella flavour. If you don’t mind regular cow’s milk, you can use it as well. The same with sweetener. I use xylitol, but if you have other sugar substitutes you like, feel free to add as much as you like.

I also used raw cacao powder, which in my opinion is much less bitter than regular cocoa powder, so you don’t need to add as much sugar or sweetener to balance the bitterness.

From this amounts of ingredients I got two quite large portions, but you can easily make four smaller ones.

Chia seeds are full of Omega-3 fatty acids, and also other nutrients, so if you’d like to balance your intake of Omega-6 fatty acids, chia is a great source. If chia seeds are not available to you, flaxeeds or linseeds are great substitute. Although I feel like soaked linseeds make slightly different consistency, more gel-like, kind of slimy. If you don’t mind (and I know lots of people do) you can use linseed to make this pudding. It’s also full of Omega-3 fatty acids, and one of the best foods that reduces inflammation in your body according to the researchers.

I would recommend eating your pudding when it’s still warm, with piece of dark chocolate melted on top. Sound good, isn’t it? 🙂

chocolate chia pudding

INGREDIENTS:

  • about 500 ml plant milk of your choice (or cow’s milk if you like)
  • 4 tsp raw cacao
  • 8 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tsp xylitol or other sugar replacement of your choice
  • handful of raspberries (I had frozen)
  • couple bits of dark chocolate

DIRECTIONS

Heat up the milk in a saucepan adding cacao powder and sweetener. Combine using a whisk. When milk heats up add chia seeds and whisk again until it starts to boil. Lower the heat and simmer for about 3 minutes stirring repeatedly. Switch off the heat and set aside to cool down.

Transfer your chia pudding to smaller bowls or other dishes, place some raspberries on top, and couple bits of dark chocolate. You can either eat it warm or cold. I like it warm with chocolate melting on top.

You can store your chia pudding in the fridge for 2 days.

Enjoy! 🙂

Asian inspired red slaw

I love these kind of salads – quick and easy to prepare, crunchy and colourful, and they goes with all sorts of meats or fish. They can easily be a morning salad you can serve with fried eggs (if you’re on low carb foods), or on its own in the evening, if you want to munch on while watching Netflix.

I like experimenting with different spices and this time I had a taste for something Asian inspired, so I dug in my spice drawer and composed this tangy dressing. I really enjoy the taste of apple cider vinegar combined with sweetness of cabbage and carrot. If you like vinegar taste you can add even more to this dressing. If you don’t have hoisin sauce, that’s fine, you can add a bit of dark soy sauce. I think a pinch of chilli flakes could also work great if you like it on the more spicy side. For me is fine as it is.

Red cabbage is a great source of vitamin C (even more than oranges!), vitamin A and Potassium. It also contains vitamin K (very important for our bones), and B vitamins, also full of antioxidants. Red cabbage is also noted as one of the fruits and vegetables with the lowest amount of pesticide residues. So you definitely include lots of cabbage into your diet, if you like it obviously!

Did you know that the colour of the cabbage will be different depending on the pH balance of the soil it grows in? For example on pH 2 (which is very acidic), the cabbage would reflect bright red-pink colour. At pH4, the colour becomes light purple, on pH6, we get the dark-purple to red. When the pH reaches 8 (that’s alkaline), the hue becomes more blue.

Asian inspired red slaw

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 small red cabbage
  • 1 small red onion
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tsp hoisin sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp lemon pepper
  • pinch of salt

DIRECTIONS

Very thinly slice red cabbage. You can also use a peeler to slice the cabbage – it will slice very thinly. Just be careful with your fingers when you use a peeler to slice it. Chop one onion, grate the carrot. Place them all in a large container and give it a good stir.

In a small bowl combine together: olive oil, sesame oil, apple cider vinegar, hoisin sauce, lemon pepper, pinch of salt and half of the sesame seeds. Pour it over the veggies and stir thoroughly. Cover with lid and place in the fridge for about 30-60 minutes. Before serving transfer to a bowl and sprinkle on top with the remaining sesame seeds.

Enjoy with or sorts of meat, fish or on its own 🙂

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An if you liked this red cabbage slaw take a look at this recipe as well:

peanut butter and sunflower seed fat bombs

Peanut butter is often a “go to” snack when you are on a keto diet. Let those who have not spent the evening with a jar of peanut butter raise their hand.

There are some misconceptions about peanut butter – some people say it’s a healthy snack, other that peanut butter isn’t beneficial for us. And both are right. As with lots of foods the are two key words: source and moderation. Peanuts grow on the ground if not taking care properly they might get mouldy, if this kind of peanuts will be used for peanut butter, it can cause allergies and inflammatory reactions. Also some manufacturers adds some other ingredients to peanut butter that we don’t want. So always keep it in in mind when shopping peanut butter. It’s the best to buy from proven manufacturers or certified brands.

Other thing is moderation: peanut butter contains lots of Omega-6 fatty acids, which your body needs but no too much, because if we eat too much Omega-6 it can cause inflammation in the body. So if we eat Omega-6, we should balance it with lots of Omega-3that prevents and heals inflammation. According to this study Western diet is very high in Omega-6 and very low in Omega-3. So actually opposite that our body needs. High amounts of Omega-6 causes plenty of health issues: cardiovascular disease, cancer, autoimmune disease etc. So most probably spending a night with a jar of peanut butter is not the best what you can do for yourself. But it doesn’t mean that you can’t have it at all. Everything is fine in moderation, and my today’s recipe is a great way to have some peanut butter but not too much 😉

Some of the types of peanuts contain monounsaturated fats that lower triglycerides, and they have all nine essential amino acids and the antioxidant resveratrol (antioxidant). They are also full of protein, which is important if you not really fan of meat.

In this case, peanut butter mixed with coconut oil and coated with sunflower seeds is a powerful snack – I can assure you you will eat one or two cubes and you won’t be able to eat more. This way you will eat less peanut butter than you would straight from the jar.

Sunflower seeds also contains lots of Omega-6, therefore keep it in mind as well. Although they contain some Omega-3 but not enough to balance Omega-6. But they have other great benefits: lots of Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorum, Pottasium, Manganese, Selenium, Folate, Vitamin B6, Niacin, Thiamin, and lots of Vitamin E.

To balance these two out we have coconut oil – to reduce inflammation, kill bad bacteria in your stomach and boost your energy levels. According to this study coconut oil, which is the most easily obtained source of MCT (healthy type of saturated fatty acid), improves (in synergy with exercise) the cardiometabolic and physical measures of people with obesity. Coconut oil also contains other compounds such as antioxidant polyphenols, known to improve metabolic profile by lowering LDL and VLDL while increasing HDL.

Coconut oil as health oil was recognized in Ayurvedic medicine almost 4000 years ago. The medium chain fatty acids and monoglycerides found primarily in coconut oil have antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal benefits. Either topically applied or ingested, coconut oil gets broken down to release Lauric Acid and Monolaurin – known anti-microbial agents. So it’s not only good for the inside of our body and our skin and hair.

Isn’t it remarkable that couple simple foods and they contain such a complicated and mysterious effect on our body?

Just in case you started thinking about Omega-3 rich foods a contrary to these peanut butter fat bombs, they are: fat fish (sardines, mackerel, anchovies), linseed/flaxeed, chia seed, walnuts, soybeans, hemp seeds, spinach, Brussels sprouts.

Did I mention that these fat bombs are easy and effortless to prepare? 🙂

peanut butter and sunflower seed fat bombs

INGREDIENTS:

  • smooth peanut butter
  • raw extra virgin coconut oil
  • sunflower seeds
  • optional: sea salt flakes

DIRECTIONS

Combine together coconut oil and peanut butter in proportion 1:1. For example 3 tablespoons of peanut butter and 3 tablespoons of coconut oil. If you haven’t tried fat bombs before, it’s better to make smaller portion. Simple melt coconut oil on a very low heat (it just need to melt, don’t heat it up too much) and thoroughly combine with peanut butter.

Line a glass or plastic container with a baking paper or cling film – it will help you to take out and slice fat bombs. Pour in combined peanut butter, level and place in the fridge or freezer until it sets. You have to remember that all fat bombs based on coconut oil will need to be stored in the fridge, because they will melt in the room temperature.

While it’ s setting in a cool place. Toast some sunflower seeds on a clear pan. Low heat and stirring frequently, not to burn them. Toasting will add lots of flavour, so I encourage you not to skip this step. Let it aside to cool down completely.

When the peanut butter is set, take it out of the container and cut in cubes. Coat each cube with toasted seeds (warmth of your fingers will melt slightly each cube so seeds will stick easily). It doesn’t need to be perfect but don’t mess with it for too long. They melt quicker than you might think, especially if you hold them in your fingers for too long 🙂

Optionally you can sprinkle couple uncoated cubes with sea salt flakes.

When all cubes are covered with seeds place them back into the fridge for another 30 minutes or so. If you feel like evening cravings are coming at you, grab one or two cubes. Enjoy chewing! 🙂

https://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/nut-and-seed-products/3076/2

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12442909/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4882694/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32602684/

waiting for Spring – green salad with linseed dressing

I know it’s end of January, but there are days when the Scottish aura outside the window tries to convince me that spring is near. I’m not the Winter person, after Christmas Holidays I can’t wait when the Spring comes, to get rid of these layers, hats and dark mornings. Birds starts to sing little bit more, the sun is nicely warming my living room, though when the wind blows it’s nice to pull the hat over my ears when I run errands.

I slowly start craving for fresh crunchy veggies and to stop cooking meaty stews, but it still will takes a two months or so until we see more signs of Spring and days without puffer jackets.

In the waiting time I can have a sniff of the cucumber in my salad (I don’t know how about you, but for me fresh cucumber smells like Spring) enjoying some sun in my living room. At least inside is warm and cosy 😉

You can actually prepare this a salad from your favourite vegetables, because all the goodness is hidden in the sauce. The base is extra-virgin olive oil, dark green and bitter in taste, but rich in omega 6 and 9 as well as vitamins E and K. Soften its taste with a teaspoon of heather honey and a little lukewarm water. Add little pink Himalayan salt, which, unlike regular table salt, is said to be rich in minerals. Himalayan salt has a slightly different salty taste than regular salt and I think that it is perfect for salads. And finally linseeds which are good for your skin, hair and digestion and nuts which they are tasty and healthy any time, anywhere. The finished sauce is delicious and I was basically tempted to eat it alone without the salad.

It’s a very simple salad, dressing makes it more special. You can prepare it for your lunch and take to work, or have it for supper. These types of salads require a lot of chewing, so if you get hungry in the evening or have cravings, such a crispy salad will successfully satisfy it. You can use various veggies and salads leaves you currently have in your kitchen. Simply prepare bigger batch of dressing that you can store in the jar and keep in the fridge for 2-3 days.

green salad with linseed dressing

INGREDIENTS:

  • salad mix: red chicory, oak leaf salad, mache salad/cornsalad
  • couple red baby peppers
  • ½ cucumber
  • piece of mild cheddar cheese
  • handful of capers
  • ½ small red onion
  • couple tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • couple tablespoons of lukewarm water
  • pinch of lemon pepper (or regular coarse pepper)
  • pinch of pink Himalayan salt
  • 1 tsp heather honey
  • 2 tsp linseeds/flaxseeds
  • couple drops of lemon juice
  • ½ tsp dried parsley or fresh finely chopped parsley leaves
  • handful of mixed nuts

DIRECTIONS

First prepare the dressing. Combine olive oil with all the spices, honey and a little lukewarm water. You can put all ingredients to a small jar, close the lid tightly and give it a good shake so that the honey dissolves well. Add linseeds and set aside for a while. During this time, prepare vegetables for the salad.

Rinse the lettuce, shred it and put it into a large bowl. Dice pepper and cucumber. Also cut the yellow cheese into small cubes. Chop the red onion finely. Drain the capers from the brine and add them to lettuce. Mix everything together. Pour with the prepared dressing and sprinkle with a handful of nuts.

summer radish salad with avocado and radish leaf dressing

Look at the colour of these beautiful leaves, don’t you think they look amazing on a plate? It’s a festival of textures and colours. They are almost velvety in touch and have deep purple hue. To complement the purples we have green and purple mustard greens with their beautiful frayed leaves. And last but not least spiky, green radish leaves. That’s something new – I used to put them to rubbish, but as you might know radish leaves are edible and you should not be afraid to add them to your salads.

I got this beautiful purple leaves in my weekly veggie box and I fell in love with their texture and colour. Quick research and looks like it’s edible wild plant called Orach also known as Saltbush, Garden Orache, Red Orache, Mountain Spinach, or French Spinach – plant of many names. They are found along North America’s coasts and on the shores of alkaline lakes inland. They are also found along seashores from the Mediterranean countries to inland areas in North Africa and eastward to Turkey and central Siberia. Some species prefer dry, salty soils and can be found in desert areas. The entire plant is edible raw or boiled. Young leaves and shoots have a mild chard-like flavour with added salt. They can be eaten raw in salads, or cooked by steaming or stir frying. They are also used to make a slightly sour soup and can be boiled with pasta to turn it pink.

For me in comparison to mustard greens and radish leaves they are gentle and velvety, very pleasurable to eat. Now let’s talk about radish leaves for a second. Their hairy and prickly texture don’t seem to be attractive for your mouth, and eating their spiky leaves might be a little bit weird. But they didn’t harmed me 🙂 And they are full of essential vitamins and minerals.

If you’re afraid to eat them in a salad they can also be sautéed with garlic and used as a side dish, chopped up and used as toppings for soups, noodles and sandwiches. You can also use them as a base for dressings, blended and mixed with olive oil, like I did in this recipe.

To finish up this salad I added boiled egg (the yellow-orange colour goes perfectly with purple) and dressing made with avocado – that’s for some fat content that will keeps me full for longer, as it was my breakfast salad.

I think it’s a great idea if you’re expecting guests who likes veggies, because orach and mustard greens look great on the plate arranged with other veggies, can look amazing on summer party table. I can imagine having this salad in a sunny garden on a lazy Sunday morning.

summer radish salad

with avocado and radish leaf dressing

INGREDIENTS:

  • Purple Orach leaves (also known as arrach, mountain spinach and saltbush)
  • mustard greens or rocket
  • radish with leaves
  • eggs
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • pinch of natural rock salt
  • lemon pepper or freshly ground black pepper
  • pinch of nigella seeds
  • optionally to spice up your dressing: chilli flakes, minced garlic or sweet chilli sauce/sriracha

DIRECTIONS

First boil the eggs. I cooked mine for about 4 minutes as I like them soft. Then cool them down.

Wash all your greens and radish to get rid of any remains of soil. Slice radishes, do not bin the leaves. Leave the nicest looking leaves to put to the salad, the rest place in a blender. Place also half of avocado to a blender adding lemon juice, pinch of salt, lemon pepper, 2 tbsp of olive oil ald about 1-2 tbsp of cold water. Water will thin the sauce making it more dressing like. Blend it all together until you get nice and smooth texture, add some more water if you feel like. You can spice up your dressing adding chilli flakes, minced garlic, or leave it as it is and add a splash of sweet chilli sauce or sriracha on top of your salad.

Arrange all the leaves on the plate, also adding some of the radish leaves. Add sliced radish and egg. Drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil. Put some avocado and radish leaf dressing and serve. I also added some nigella seeds for extra flavour and as visual interest.

Enjoy!

Source of knowledge:

https://www.organicgardener.com.au/blogs/satisfying-saltbush-orach

https://www.wildernessarena.com/food-water-shelter/food-food-water-shelter/food-procurement/edible-wild-plants/orach