Make friends with salad: seven summer sensations.

I love a bit of alliteration. I also love a salad. I have made friends with salad and there is no denying it. Whilst a good old tuna salad does fly on my radar frequently, especially for the quick lunch, I do like to mix it up.

I know it can be a struggle to get your five serves of vegies in each day, and quite frankly, if you don’t do a tuna salad properly, it can be a little boring. So I’ve collated a few of my favourite salads. A couple oldies, and some newbies.

The first five can be served as a side, or you can add some lean protein or a wholegrain like quinoa or freekah to make more of a meal out of them. The measurements are just a guide; feel free to play around with them to suit your taste buds.

All things green

This was a new one this Christmas. I threw it together and hoped for the best. Well, there was not much left of this one.


1 bunch broccolini, halved

1 bunch asparagus, trimmed & halved

250g sugar snap peas, trimmed

1 lemon

1 tbsp. flaked almonds

1 tbsp

Salt & pepper, to taste

50g Danish feta

(I find Danish feta more creamier, less hard & crumbly; goats cheese would also be outrageous)


1. Steam broccolini, asparagus and sugar snap peas lightly

2. Combine lemon juice, rind & EVOO in a jug. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Add feta to the greens, drizzle with dressing and toss.


Pear, cranberry & walnut salad

Christmas salad number 2. Except I knew I was missing something – the pear.


1 bag of rocket & spinach mix

1 avocado, diced

1 pear, sliced

1 tbsp cranberries

50g Danish fetta

1 tbsp walnuts

1 lemon

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Salt & pepper, to taste


1. Place salad ingredients in bowl

2. Combine lemon juice, rind & olive oil in a jug. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Toss to combine.

Roast pumpkin & beetroot salad

This is an old classic of mine that has features at three christmas lunches in the past. I often enjoy this one with chicken. Lamb backstrap would be outrageous.


 1/2 Jap Pumpkin, peeled & diced

2 whole beetroot

1 bag of spinach

50g feta

1 tbsp pine nuts

1 tbsp wholegrain mustard

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar


1. Roast vegetables in the oven until tender.

2. Wearing gloves, peel skin off beetroot.

3. Combine wholegrain mustard & balsamic vinegar.

4. Place roast vegetables, spinach, feta and pine nuts in a bowl.

5. Drizzle with dressing, or serve on the side.

Spiced cauliflower & brussels sprouts with feta & almonds.


 1 medium head of cauliflower, chopped into florets

8-10 brussels sprouts, halved (or quarted depending on size)

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp coriander

½ tsp chilli flakes

50g fetta

¼ cup raw almonds, roughly chopped

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

zest & juice of 1 lemon


1. Blanch cauliflower in boiling water for 1-2 minutes, drain and allow to dry

2. Preheat oven to ~180 degrees.

3. Toss cauliflower & sprouts through spices, and place on baking tray.

4. Bake in oven for approximately 10-15 minutes. When almost crispy, add the chopped almonds.

5. Make dressing with evoo, zest & juice.

6. Remove vege from oven and toss with crumbed fetta & drizzle with dressing.

Pea, avocado & broccolini salad

Recipe adapted from Healthy Food Guide December 2014.

Serves 4


250g sugar snap peas, trimmed

2 bunches broccolini, halved (the original recipe called for asparagus)

1 bunch radishes, trimmed & thinly sliced

1 small ripe avocado, diced

1 lebanese cucumber, sliced

1/3 cup pecans, chopped

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Zest & juice of 1 lemon


1. Blanch peas in boiling water for 1 minute, drain & rinse with cold water. Repeat with broccolini for 2 minutes.

2. Combine with additional salad ingredients.

3. Combine lemon & evoo, drizzle over salad, add pecans & combine.

Tofu & vegetable soba noodle salad

Recipe adapted from Healthy Food Guide October 2014.

Serves 4

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

250g snow peas

2 large zucchinis

180g soba noodles

2 large carrots

1 red capsicum

4 red radishes

200g marinated tofu (I used plain tofu –marinated in soy, sesame & sweet chilli then pan fried)

1 ½ tbsp reduced salt soy sauce

2 teaspoons sesame oil


1. Bring a large saucepan to the boil & add noodles. Cook as per instructions. Drain, rinse under cold water.

2. Thinly slice snow peas & zucchini, blanch for 20 seconds in boiling water. Refresh under cold water & drain.

3. Thinly slice carrots, capsicum, radishes, tofu

4. Combine soy sauce & sesame oil.

5. Place all salad ingredients in salad bowl, drizzle with dressing & toss to combine.


Grilled chicken & noodle salad with satay dressing.

Recipe adapted from Healthy Food Guide December 2014.

Serves 4

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

1x 440g packet shelf-fresh rice noodles

3 large bunches bok choy, sliced

2 shallots, sliced

1 red capsicum, sliced

100g snow peas, sliced

1 large carrots, peeled into ribbons

½ bunch coriander, leaves only

400g skinless chicken breast, chargrilled, shredded

Satay dressing

½ cup natural peanut butter

2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

2 tbsp white wine vinegar

1 garlic clove, crushed

A pinch of curry powder.


1. Prepare noodles as per instructions, and allow to cool.

2. Toss bok choy, snow peas, carrot, coriander capsicum, shallots in a bowl.

3. Scatter noodles on plate, top with salad and chicken.

4. Combine satay dressing ingredients in a microwavable container & microwave for 1 minute. Stir well, and drizzle on salad.

Ta da.

 Happy salading.

Emma xo


17 thoughts on “Make friends with salad: seven summer sensations.

  1. I must try that PB dressing…I might just use it as an excuse to eat peanut butter at every meal of the day.

    Kudos for jazzing up the brussels and cauliflower – such underrated and underloved vegies! x

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