24 June 2017Last updated

Food | Recipes

Crunchy salads for a healthy start

Vibrant, crunchy and hearty enough to be a meal, these salad recipes will soon be your go-to comfort food

30 Oct 2016 | 11:24 am
  • Beetroot and radish carpaccio with rocket pesto and feta


Beetroot and radish carpaccio with rocket pesto and feta

Prep time 45 mins
Serves 4

80g rocket
70g raw almonds
60g Parmesan, finely grated
125ml (½ cup) olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp garlic, finely chopped
2 celery stalks
600g assorted beetroot, washed and peeled
160g radishes, washed
140g feta rounds, crumbled
1 lemon, zest of
2 tbsp almonds
Micro basil, a handful
Olive oil, to drizzle

To make pesto, place ingredients in a food processor and blend until fine. Season to taste. Refrigerate in a tupper. For the salad, peel off thin ribbons from the celery stalks. Place the ribbons in a bowl of ice water to curl up, 30 minutes.

Use a mandoline to cut the beetroot and radishes into paper-thin slices. Assemble the salad by packing the beetroot in a thin layer. Scatter radishes and celery curls on top. 
Add rocket pesto.

Sprinkle over feta, lemon zest, almonds and basil leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and serve.

Roasted fig and apple-glazed beef bacon salad


Prep time 5 mins
Cooking time 40 mins
Serves 4

400g cocktail tomatoes
2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp finely chopped garlic
200g beef bacon
2 tbsp apple sauce
200g small figs, halved
Olive oil, to drizzle
1 tbsp brown sugar
80g baby spinach
90g red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
400g tinned borlotti beans, drained
300g pears, cored and chopped
80g salted cashews
Microherbs, a handful
Lemon wedges, to serve

For the roasted tomatoes, preheat the oven to 200°C. Toss together tomatoes, olive oil and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 15 minutes. Leave the oven on for the bacon.

For the apple-glazed beef bacon, place the beef bacon strips on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 10 minutes.

Brush the apple sauce on to the beef bacon and cook for a further 2 minutes. Once cool, break them in half. Leave the oven on for the figs.

For the roasted figs, arrange the figs in a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle the sugar on to each half and roast for 10 minutes.

To assemble the salads, place some baby spinach at the bottom of each glass. Add a layer of roasted tomatoes, then scatter some red onion, beans and pears on top. Top with a layer of roasted figs and add some beef bacon pieces.

Sprinkle over the cashews and microherbs and serve with lemon wedges for squeezing on the side – the zesty lemon is the perfect balance for the sweetness of the figs and beef bacon.

Roasted beetroot, endive and chargrilled chicken salad with an orange and herb dressing


Prep time 15 mins
Cooking time 30 mins
Serves 4

½ cup orange juice
90g red onion, peeled and chopped
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp chopped chives
½ tsp Dijon mustard
½ tsp garlic, finely chopped
Fresh flat-leaf parsley, handful
500g beetroot, peeled, washed and cut into very small cubes
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp honey
1 tsp garlic, peeled and minced
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp olive oil
2 tsp white sesame seeds
2 tsp turmeric
450g skinless chicken breasts, deboned
4 endives, halved lengthways
120g Camembert, cubed
4 tbsp hazelnuts
1 tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
Microherbs, a handful
Onion sprouts, a handful

For the dressing, place everything in a food processor and purée.

For the roasted beetroot, preheat the oven to 200°C. Toss beetroot with the rest of the ingredients. Season to taste and roast in the oven, 30 minutes. Allow to cool.

For the chicken, stir together paprika, lemon juice, oil, sesame seeds and turmeric. Season and rub over the chicken. Heat a griddle pan and cook chicken until done, 2-3 minutes on each side. Slice into strips.

For the salad, arrange the endive halves on each serving plate. Scatter over some of the beetroot, chicken and Camembert. Top with hazelnuts, parsley, microherbs and onion sprouts. Drizzle with dressing and serve the rest on the side.

Mango, fig and coconut skewers served with a chocolate-coconut sauce


Prep time Overnight
Makes 8 Skewers

750ml water
4 tbsp honey or agave nectar
1½ lemongrass sticks, halved and bruised
Seeds of 1 vanilla pod
3 jasmine tea bags
300g mango chunks
200g small figs, halved
50g coconut chunks
400ml tin coconut milk
1 tsp cornflour
2 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tbsp agave nectar or honey
1 tbsp almond butter
Seeds of ½ vanilla pod
3 tbsp shelled pistachios, slivered
Handful fresh mint leaves
Handful fresh small basil leaves

For the skewers, heat water, honey or agave nectar, lemongrass and vanilla seeds in a pan. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a low and let it simmer for 5 minutes.

Add tea bags, cook, 2 minutes, then remove. Allow mixture to cool, about 1 hour. Add the fruit to the cooled syrup and refrigerate to marinate for at least 1 hour or overnight.

For the chocolate sauce, whisk together 60ml coconut milk and cornflour until smooth.

Place in a pan with the remaining coconut milk and ingredients. Stir.

Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, 5 minutes, whisking regularly to avoid lumps. Thread 2 chunks of mango and 2 fig halves, alternating, on to each skewer. End off with a coconut chunk. Sprinkle with chopped pistachios, mint and basil leaves to garnish. Serve with the sauce.

Butter-fried radish, wild mushroom and baby marrow salad stacks with a sour cream and chive dressing


Prep time 20 mins
Cooking time 10 mins
Serves 4

250ml sour cream
50g spring onions, chopped
1/3 cup pickled gherkins, chopped
2 tbsp finely chopped chives
2 tbsp red grape vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
55g butter
240g radishes, sliced
2 tsp finely chopped garlic
300g mixed wild mushrooms
500g medium baby marrows, spiralised or julienned
300g buffalo mozzarella, torn
60g croutons
Microherbs, a handful

For the dressing, place everything in a food processor and purée until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.

For the salad, place a frying pan over medium heat. Once hot, add half the butter, radishes, garlic and sauté for 5 minutes. Season to taste and remove from the pan. While the pan is still hot, add the remaining butter and fry mushrooms until tender, 2-3 minutes. Season.

Place a handful of the spiralised or julienned baby marrows on each serving plate, making a neat bed.

Add a spoonful of the mushrooms and radishes.

Top with mozzarella and croutons and scatter over some microherbs. Serve with the sour cream and chive dressing on the side.