It feels odd to be writing this on a very gloomy and rainy Saturday here in Auckland, but the weather is (slowly) heating up and I’m feeling the urge to crank up the BBQ and relax into a season of easy salads and lazy dinners outside.
I enjoyed these three amazing salads at a lunch last week introducing media to Diabetes Action Month 2015. Next Saturday (Nov 28th) is FitBit MoveMeant Day when nearly 40 gyms and recreational facilities will be opening their doors FOR FREE to encourage their local communities to take control of their health through fun, accessible exercise. This is SO important in helping to reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes or helping you manage your diabetes. Find out what’s happening in your region by clicking here.
These delicious salads were prepared by Claire Turnbull at the Fitbit event in support of Diabetes Action Month and I pretty much haven’t stopped thinking about them since – no joke they are stunning! Plus they’re super easy and cheap. (Shared with permission).
Lebanese Brown Rice Salad
(Serves 4–6 as a main or 8–10 as a side)
1/4 pumpkin (approx. 600g), peeled and cut into cubes
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp brown sugar (optional)
2–3 tsp ground cumin
2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
3 cups cooked and cooled brown rice
1 punnet cherry tomatoes (approx. 200g), cut in half
1/2 cup sun ower seeds
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1 red onion, very finely sliced
1 handful coriander or parsley, chopped
Flesh of 1 avocado, cut into chunks
Juice of 2 large lemons
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 180°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Lay out the chopped pumpkin on the tray and sprinkle with olive oil, brown sugar (if using), cumin and crushed garlic.
Roast in the oven for 20–30 minutes or until soft (the time will depend on the size of your pumpkin pieces). When the pumpkin is cooked, remove from the oven and cool.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, place the brown rice, tomato halves, seeds, red onion and herbs. Mix together and put to one side.
To make the dressing, simply place the lemon juice and olive oil in a clean jam jar, put the lid on and shake.
Add the cooled pumpkin to the brown rice mix and stir through. Add the chopped avocado and pour over the dressing.
• You can use cooked quinoa, buckwheat or bulgar wheat as an alternative to brown rice, if you prefer.
• Add extra lemon juice, if you like.
Nutritional information per serve (based on 6 serves)
kJ = 2392 kcals = 570 Carbs = 58g Protein = 15g Fat = 31g Fibre = 5g
Rainbow Power Salad
(Serves 4–6 as a main, 8–10 as a side)
A fresh, colourful salad packed with goodness.
2 medium beetroot, peeled and grated
3 large carrots, peeled and grated
2 courgettes, grated
1/2 punnet cherry tomatoes (approx. 100g), cut in half
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1 handful parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp runny honey
Juice of 1 large orange
1 tsp sesame oil
On a large platter or plate, lay out the grated beetroot. Sprinkle the grated carrot on top to create a layer that is slightly smaller than the first. Add a layer of grated courgette – again, making it smaller than the carrot layer so you can see the rainbow effect. Place the sliced tomatoes on the top and sprinkle with seeds and parsley. To make the dressing, simply mix all the ingredients together and serve with the salad.
Mix the salad up just before you eat it, if you like, or leave it all layered up; whatever works for you! Enjoy as a main for lunch or dinner with grilled chicken, lean meat, fish, tofu, a boiled egg or pulses, or serve as a side salad with a main meal.
Nutritional information per serve (without dressing, based on 6 serves) kJ = 518 kcals = 123 Carbs = 7g Protein = 6g Fat = 8g Fibre = 4g
Nutritional information per serve (dressing only, based on 6 serves) kJ = 183 kcals = 44 Carbs = 9g Protein = <1g Fat = 1g Fibre = <1g
(Serves 4 as a main or 8 as a side). Healthy, crunchy and delicious.
2 cups shredded red cabbage
2 cups shredded white cabbage
2 cups grated carrot 1 red capsicum, finely sliced
1 cup shelled, cooked and cooled edamame beans
4 spring onions, finely sliced
1/2 cup peanuts (may be chopped)
1 handful coriander, chopped
4 tbsp rice wine vinegar or sushi vinegar
1 tbsp neutral flavoured oil (e.g. canola)
2 tbsp runny honey
1 tbsp reduced-salt soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp smooth peanut butter
1 chilli, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
In a large bowl, mix together the cabbage, carrot, capsicum, beans, spring onion, peanuts and coriander. To make the dressing, simply mix all the ingredients together in a bowl or put them in a clean jam jar, put the lid on and shake thoroughly until the peanut butter is completely mixed in. Pour the dressing over the salad. Perfect served with grilled or shredded chicken, tofu or fish. Add an extra sprinkle of nuts before serving if you like!
- You can use white wine vinegar if you don’t have sushi or rice vinegar.
- If you want to take some to work the next day, don’t add dressing to the whole mixture. It is best to add the dressing just before you serve it.
- You can buy edamame beans from the frozen section of most supermarkets – ideally choose those which have already had the shells removed.
Nutritional information per serve (slaw without dressing, based on 4 serves) kJ = 457 kcals = 109 Carbs = 9g Protein = 10g Fat = 4g Fibre = 8g
Nutritional information on per serve (dressing only, based on 4 serves) kJ = 391 kcals = 93 Carbs = 9g Protein = 1g Fat = 6g Fibre = <1g