Thursday, September 16, 2010

Salad City - population: my stomach.

What do you do when you wake up looking like the elephant woman? (For serious, I woke up with a lip the size of my nose!)

Well you obviously go to the doctor first and get a magical cream to fix your disfigured hideous face ... AND THEN when you can't go to work (for obvious reasons, such as scaring customers off of their food), you stay home and make about a billion salads. When you realise a billion is probably a little much to fit in your fridge, you settle on six. Just six. . . of the best salads of your life.

These are:

  • soy soba noodle salad
  • rosemary lemon potato salad
  • pesto pasta salad
  • balsamic bean salad
  • chargrilled vegetable salad
  • meditteranean cous cous salad

soy soba noodle salad:

this could easily be made super spicy, but I like to taste and enjoy the flavours of the noodles themselves. Also, hold back on over saucing the noodles as they will get sloppy < this is not good.

2 rounds soba noodles
2 T soy sauce
1 T sweet soy sauce
1 T vinegar
1 t sriracha
1 t sesame oil
1 t fresh ginger, grated
1 T toasted sesame seeds
Capsicum, 1/4 cup thinly sliced
Cabbage, 1/2 cup thinly slices

Cook soba noodles for a couple of minutes in boiling water, remove and dunk into cold water to give them their chewy slurpy texture and stop the cooking process.
Mix together all other ingredients to form the sauce. Toss noodles in sauce and leave the flavours to infuse for at least half an hour. 

rosemary lemon potato salad:

this one would be delicious with something green like spring onions, but alas I had none. I feel like the extra roasting of potatoes at the end gives them a better texture than usual mooshy potato salad, which I dislike.

10 baby potatoes, cut into bite size pieces, par boiled
2 T olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 brown onion, thinly sliced
1 T fresh rosemary, finely diced
1 T lemon juice
1 t salt
1 t pepper

Par boil the potatoes until almost cooked through. 
In a big frying pan add oil, garlic, onion and rosemary. Cook until onions are translucent. Add in potatoes, lemon juice, salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes. Transfer to a baking tray and bake in a 180C oven for about 15 mins or until slightly golden. Remove. Cool in fridge. EAT!

pesto pasta salad:

I mean honestly, is anything bad with pesto? When basil is not in season you can use rocket and save on money - and probably the taste of bad out of season herbs! 

2 cups mix of rocket, basil and spinach
2 garlic cloves
1/2 red chilli
1/2 cup cashews
good glug of olive oil
squeeze lemon juice


1 tomato, finely diced
1 avocado, finely diced

Cook 2 cups spiral pasta until al dente. Drain and while still hot add about 2 Tablespoons of the pesto, extra salt and pepper. When slightly cooled add the tomato and avocado and mix through. Serve cool.

balsamic bean salad:

This salad will bring you great joy and make you as strong as Popeye! Even though there is no spinach in it... It's simple and full of things that you can just throw in from your pantry. Excellent!

1 tin mixed beans
1 T olive oil
1 T balsamic vinegar
1 garlic clove, finely minced
1/2 t horseradish
5 marinated artichoke hearts, chopped
cucumber, 1/4 cup finely diced

Add oil, balsamic, garlic, horseradish, salt and pepper in a bowl. Rinse beans and mix through, add in artichoke and cucumber. Let flavours combine for at least half an hour.

chargrilled vegetable salad:

THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST SALADS EVER. Fo real. It sounds really strange with the sweet marinade, but it brings out the earthy flavours in the mushroom and eggplant. The Asian flavours don't come through in a strong way in the end, just the flavour of ohmagoodnessdeliciousness.

10 swiss mushrooms, small and roughly the same size
eggplant, 1 cup, diced roughly the same size as mushrooms
pumpkin, 2 cups, diced roughly the same size as mushrooms and eggplant! (see a theme?)
1 T sweet soy sauce
1 T sweet chilli sauce
1/2 t sriracha
1 t water
7 marinated green and black olives
1 cup rocket, chopped

Roast mushrooms and eggplant at 180C on a tray for about 10-15 minutes or until cooked and soft.
Roast pumpkin on a separate tray at 180C for about half an hour or until cooked and browned. 
In a bowl whisk together sweet soy, sweet chilli, sriracha and water. When mushrooms and eggplant are still hot, add to this mix and coat well. Leave them soaking in this until the pumpkin is out of the oven. In a big bowl add the rocket, olives, pumpkin, mushroom and eggplant mix. (there was some sauce left over in mine and i opted to save it to dress the salad later if it needed it.)

meditteranean cous cous salad:

Yum yum yum! The flavours in this dish are delightfully balanced and Moroccan. I love me some Moroccan flavours. You can use any dried fruit, but I tested a couple and found apricots to be the best. It really does round off the flavours nicely, and therefore I banish you from removing it!

1 cup cous cous
1 cup water
glug olive oil
1 t smoked paprika
1/2 t za'atar
1 t ground cumin
1/2 t ground coriander
1 t dried chilli flakes
1 t salt
1/2 cup grated carrot
1 handful roasted, unsalted mixed nuts
5 olives, quartered
1 T dried apricots, very finely diced
Oil for extra body

In a saucepan bring 1 cup of water, olive oil, smoked paprika, za'atar, cumin, coriander, chilli flakes
and salt to a boil. Add in cous cous, stir quickly with a fork, cover and leave for 5 minutes until cooked. Pour into a big bowl and fluff with a fork. Add in carrot, nuts, olives, apricots and extra oil if the consistency is too dry. 


This seems like a crazy amount of salad (it does make a LOT), alas, it only took me about an hour and a half to create. Stick some funky tunes on and get chopping. The crazy thing about all of these flavours is that they all work together! Nothing really overpowers anything else and it is a nice harmonious mix in the belly (and head) :D

* T = Tablespoon
t = teaspoon.
Just incase...


  1. That's a lot of salads at once! They all look good, though. I especially like the bean salad and the soba salad, but really they are all worth a try.

  2. Well, you're pretty much set for life, aren't you? :D Loving the sound of the soba salad - I've had half a pack of soba in the pantry for about six month, so I figure this recipe gives me no excuse to leave it languishing there!

  3. Jessica, the 2 salads you named were pretty much the best ones ;) Also, too too many!

    Hannah, I know! I reached a point of trying to force people to finish them off because there was so much! Soba noodles are ALWAYS left in the cupboard for around 6 months, this salad is perfect for them :D

  4. so many salads, I'm impressed. I like the idea of the horseradish in the bean salsa.

  5. This is amazing! I like this idea for quick lunches throughout the week. Mmm.


Thank you for perusing my blog, I'll try to reply to all comments :D


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