28 May 2020

My Go-To Healthy Summer Salads

Girl from North London, food, blogger, lifestyle, lunch ideas

The key to my ideal summer lunch is something healthy with a crunch (ideally raw veg), light enough to prevent a post-lunch slump but satisfying enough to keep me going until dinner. But most importantly, quick and easy to throw together the night before work or when ravenous at 1pm. In today's post, I share with you two salads that fulfil this brief and are also vegetarian, protein-rich and tasty. Perfect for eating at home as a quick lunch, packed in tupperware for a picnic or the office or as part of a summer buffet spread when entertaining (when all of these things are possible again).

QUINOA SALAD
(pictured above)
Serves one

Ingredients:
- Half a cup of quinoa or quinoa & bulgur wheat mix
- 8 baby plum tomatoes
- 2 inch piece of cucumber
- Handful of rocket
- Handful of olives
- 40g of Feta
For the dressing:
- 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp of white wine vinegar
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- Generous grind of salt & pepper

Directions:
Cook the quinoa according to the packet instructions, pour into the mixing bowl and leave to cool.

While the quinoa is cooling, chop up the tomatoes and cucumber and slice the olives in half. Mix the dressing ingredients in a small bowl or jug.

Add the tomatoes, cucumber, olives, rocket and dressing to the quinoa and mix to combine. Taste and add extra seasoning or vinegar if needed. Finish by crumbling the feta over the top of the salad.

Options:
- Any salad vegetables that you have lying around can be added to this - try baby spinach, shredded baby gem lettuce or spring onion.
- Swap the feta for grilled halloumi. Tear the halloumi into bite-sized pieces and throw over the salad whilst still warm
- Roasted or grilled veg, such as red pepper, is a great addition. In the picture above, I've added courgette, aubergine and red pepper that have been barbecued and marinated in advance. If you are interested in the recipe for the marinated veg, let me know in the comments below as they are damn good on bread too.

lunch ideas, food blogger, girl from north london, lifestyle

THREE BEAN SALAD
Serves two

Ingredients:
- 400g tin of 3 bean salad mix (I like this one
- 16 cherry or baby plum tomatoes
- 4 inch piece of cucumber
- Handful of rocket
- Generous handful of olives
- 60g of Feta

For the dressing:
- 1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp of white wine vinegar
- 1 spring onion, finely sliced
- Generous grind of salt & pepper

Directions:
Drain the beans, then stir with the dressing in a bowl.

Chop the cucumber, tomato and feta. Add to the bean mixture, along with the olives and rocket and stir well.

Taste to check the seasoning and add more salt or pepper if required.

Options:
- The beans can be drained and dressed up to a day or two in advance. I'll often dress the beans, eat one half in today's salad and pop the other half in a tupperware to use in tomorrow's salad.
- For vegans, swap the cubes of Feta for chunks of avocado.
- Carrot ribbons are a great crunchy addition to this salad - use a peeler to carve long ribbons of raw carrot and add to the salad.
- Sundried tomatoes (the type in oil in a jar) are a lovely addition as they add a bit of texture and sweetness

Leave a comment below if you try any of the recipes! I'd love to know your take on my favourite salads.

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