I Love Salads!!

Lunch, Salad

As most of you know by now, I love salads!! Favourites are always hard to choose but time and time again I find myself coming back to these two recipes so obviously I had to share them.

The bitter tang of feta with the smooth crunch of toasted hazelnuts make a simple broccoli and tomato salad sing for me. My second salad recipe offers you a taste of the Middle East with the addition of a simple tahini sauce to enliven a simple red cabbage slaw.

Both recipes will keep well in the fridge for at least 3-4 days once stored in a resealable container. I would regularly make these at the start of the week and refill my lunchbox daily from these along some simple salad greens and a protein source. Check out my food prep guide for more simple mealtime ideas.

Salads, Delalicious

Broccoli, Tomato, Feta & Hazelnut

Serves 4 as a side.

Broccoli, Tomato, Feta & Hazelnut Salad, Delalicious

  • 1/2 head of broccoli, chopped into florets
  • 8 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 50g Feta cheese, cubed
  • 2 tbsp hazelnuts
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp honey/maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  1. Bring a saucepan of salted water to the boil, remove from the heat and add the broccoli florets. Cover with the lid and allow to blanch for 8-10 minutes (you want the broccoli to still have a bite but not rock hard).
  2. Strain the broccoli and rinse under cold running water until fully cooled. Continue to strain any excess water until ready to use.
  3. Toast the hazelnuts on a frying pan or in a medium heat oven until the skin begins to loosen, remove from the pan/oven and allow to cool.
  4. Once the hazelnuts are cooled, chop in half.
  5. Whisk together the olive oil, honey, sesame oil,  apple cider vinegar and lemon juice in a large bowl.
  6. Add all the remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix well.

Middle Eastern Style Red Cabbage Slaw

Serves 5 as a side.

Middle Eastern Style Red Cabbage Slaw, Delalicious

  • 200g red cabbage
  • 2 spring onions
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 3 tsp tahini paste
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil plus 1 tsp
  • 3 tbsp water
  1. Finely slice the red cabbage and spring onion. Julienne (or finely slice) the carrots.
  2. Place all the vegetables and seeds in a large mixing bowl.
  3. Stir through 2 tbsp lemon juice and 1 tsp of olive oil.
  4. In a separate small bowl, whisk together the tahini, lemon juice, olive oil and water until you get a runny sauce (depending on the consistency of your tahini, your sauce may still be too thick or too thin – if so, just add more tahini to make it thicker and more water to make it thinner).
  5. Serve the salad in a large bowl with a drizzle of the sauce over the top.

Grated Carrot, Courgette & Pumpkin Slaw

Salad

If you haven’t figured it out already, I love salads!! It’s not just because they are healthy but I love the texture of salads, the crunch of cabbage, the burst of flavour that fresh herbs add and the juicy sweetness of sun-ripened tomatoes. This recipe is a very colourful slaw that combines lots of vegetables, seeds and a simple vinagerette that will add a serious burst of colour to your plate.

  • 200g red cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium carrot, coarsely grated
  • 1/2 medium courgette, coarsely grated
  • 2 tbsp pumpkin and sunflower seeds
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley or coriander, roughly chopped

Dressing:

  • 2 tsp honey
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp water
  1. Place all the vegetables in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the seeds and combine well.
  3. Whisk all the dressing ingredients together until well combined.
  4. Combine the dressing, lemon juice and freshly chopped herbs to the vegetables and stir together until well coated using a fork.

Quinoa & Almond Breakfast Bowl

Breakfast

If you lived with me for a day, you would realise fairly quickly food waste is one of my pet peeves. I literally find a use for every scrap of food in my fridge and constantly remind my housemates not to throw out food without asking me first; as more than likely it can be used. It actually kills me to see perfectly good food in the bin…a little part of me cries inside honestly…I know it sounds a bit mad!! At home in Tipperary, we have hens so I don’t feel so bad about food scraps as the hens get to feast on them and then supply us with eggs. Leftovers is another thing people always struggle with in the kitchen and this is where this recipe for a quick breakfast delight came about. I haven’t tried it yet but would imagine any leftover grain should do the trick here, I’m thinking brown rice could be a real winner too so get experimenting!

Serves 1.img_6832

  • 100g leftover cooked quinoa
  • 2 tsp almond butter
  • 1 tbsp milled linseed
  • 1/2 banana
  • 5 tbsp milk
  1. I would not recommend using a bowl here unless you have a lid for it, as I made the rooky mistake and had a bit of cleaning to do. So for the second batch I used a plastic resealable container and it worked perfectly.
  2. Chop the banana and place all the ingredients in the bowl/container. Mix well together and place in the microwave on high for 3-4 minutes until the milk is well absorbed.
  3. Serve with some berries and seeds.

Beetroot, Feta & Kale Salad

Lunch, Salad

I have a serious obsession with beetroot, simply can’t get enough of it. About three years ago, I wouldn’t of touched one with a barge pole but at the moment it seems to end up on most of my plates or lunchboxes. Beetroot and a strong flavour like goat’s cheese or Feta are a great tasting combination. If you are bringing this for lunch to work, I’d recommend you bring the dressing separate in a little jar and mix through just before eating.

Serves 2 as a starter or side-salad.

  • 2 handfuls kale
  • 1 handful rocket leaves
  • 1/5 of cucumber
  • 1 medium freshly cooked or vacuum packed cooked beetroot
  • 1/2 pear
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin & sunflower seeds
  • 1 tbsp crumbled Feta cheese

Dressing:

  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  1. Roughly tear the kale into bite size pieces.
  2. Cut the cucumber in half length-ways, spoon out the soft center and thinly slice into half moons.
  3. Finely grate or Julienne the pear.
  4. Place the pear and vegetables in a bowl.
  5. Mix together all the dressing ingredients and stir through the salad ingredients.
  6. Transfer to a serving plate and spoon over the seeds and cheese.

Fruit & Nut Caramel Squares

Treats

These little beauties are irresistible, perfect for your mid-morning break or a treat at any hour. I used activated nuts and seeds (soaked and gently roasted at a low temperature, the proposed health benefits are similar to sprouting) but feel free to use regular nuts. They also freeze really well so don’t feel like you need to gobble them all in one go but they certainly won’t last long!

Makes 30 squares. 
Activated Nuts & Seeds:

  • 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 50g almonds
  • 50g cashews
  • 50g walnuts

Caramel:

  • 1 large ripe banana
  • 300g chopped dates
  • 2 tbsp peanut or almond butter
  • 3 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 5 tbsp hot water
  • 75g oats

Filling:

  • 100g dessicated coconut
  • 3 tbsp milled linseed
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 4 tbsp diced dried apricots and raisins
  • 75g oats

Chocolate Topping:

  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 1 tbsp solid coconut oil
  1. Place all the activated nuts and seeds mix into a bowl, cover with water and allow to soak overnight. 
  2. Pre-heat an oven to 100°C. Drain and rinse the activated mix and evenly spread in a large baking tray. Gently roast for 2 hours or until crispy. Turn the mix every 30 minutes to ensure they evenly crisp. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. 
  3. For the caramel: place all the ingredients excluding the nut butter into a food processor and blend until a smooth, runny texture is reached. Spoon in the nut butter and blend for another 2 minutes. Reserve 1.5 tablespoons of the caramel for the topping. 
  4. Halve the cooled cashews and almonds. Using your hands, break the walnuts into rough pieces.
  5. Add the filling mix and activated nuts and seeds to the caramel and mix thoroughly until well combined (I find a fork is the best thing to ensure all the caramel is used). 
  6. Line a baking tray with parchment and evenly spread the caramel mix. Use the back of a spoon to flatten the mixture down. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes to set. 
  7. Melt the chocolate and coconut oil together in a bowl over a pot of boiled water until you get a glossy chocolate.
  8. Remove the tray from the fridge and pour over the chocolate. Roll the baking tray from side to side to evenly spread the chocolate. 
  9. Add 3 teaspoons of hot water to the reserved caramel and mix together until you get a runny mixture. 
  10. Using the tip of a teaspoon, draw lines with the caramel across the chocolate. 
  11. Place in the fridge to set for at least 1 hour. Remove from the fridge 10 minutes prior to cutting to allow the chocolate soften and not crack as you cut into squares.

Oat & Spelt Seed Scones

Breakfast, Lunch, Snack, Treats

Spelt can be a bit messy to work with, so be prepared to get your hands full of dough whilst shaping these scones but they are well worth it! Simply serve with soup, salad or else simply top with jam, hummus or nut butter.

  Makes 15 scones.

  • 200g oats
  • 500ml buttermilk
  • 2 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 200g spelt wholemeal flour
  • 3 tbsp milled linseed
  • 1 heaped tsp bread soda
  • 1 tbsp pumpkin seeds
  • 1 tbsp sunflower seeds
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Add the oats to a large mixing bowl and stir through the oil and 300ml of the milk. Cover and place in the fridge for at least 2 hours. 
  2. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Grease and line with parchment 2 baking trays.
  3. Add the flour, linseed, seeds, bread soda and salt to the oats and mix together whilst gradually adding the remaining buttermilk until it forms a loose dough. 
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and evenly flatten the dough to about 1 inch thick. Cut into squares using a knife and place onto the baking trays. 
  5. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes or until golden brown. 
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.