Helly's top tips!

We all welcome the warmer weather and with it comes an abundance of fresh, readily available produce meaning we swap winter root veggies for those hearty salads.

Session 2: Green Veg Salad

When we talk about a salad, we immediately think of lettuce. BUT get it out of your head now that salads are limited to bowls of lettuce. Sturdy vegetables like green beans, broccoli, courgette, and asparagus can all play the role of a salad foundation every bit as brilliantly as romaine or iceberg.

A great salad today is about different textures, layers, herbs all working in harmony. Testing out different flavour combinations is part of the fun

Basic principle;

Blanch each of your chosen veg for a few minutes. Be careful not to overcook them, no one likes mushy veg.  Once cooked it’s an idea to throw them in some cold water to cool them quickly so they don’t continue cooking. Once they are all cold pop them and all the other ingredients in a large bowl.  Season well and then drizzle on the dressing and mix.

Here are a few suggestions to start with;

Now it’s your turn to have a go, let me know how you get on! For extra inspiration I always look at recipes online or flick through my many books. Here are my top 3 favourites.

Our top 3 recommendations;

This is an excellent book which brings the salads to centre stage. It showcases dishes that are big on flavour, texture and impact. You’ll never see salads in the same way again.  Featuring sections on building your salad, maximising flavour and plating your salad to impress, it’s a great book to have in the kitchen.

You can buy it here

If you love Asian-style food, then East is a wonderful resource if you want to  start cooking more of it at home. A lot of the recipes are great for time-poor cooks and, although the odd recipe does ask for more specialist ingredients, it primarily caters to those who can only make it to their local shop. If you’re looking to expand your repertoire of vegetarian dishes or want to learn a bit more about how to use spices, then East will do that for you.

You can find it here

This book is perfect if you need inspiration. Ottolenghi is the king of salads. His approach to vegetable dishes is wholly original and innovative, based on strong flavours and stunning, fresh combinations. With sections devoted to cooking greens, aubergines, brassicas, rice and cereals, pasta and couscous, pulses, roots, squashes, onions, fruit, mushrooms and tomatoes, the breadth of colours, tastes and textures is extraordinary.

You can find it here

Head to our shop to fill your freezer with nutritionally balanced chef prepared meals that you can eat with your lovely side salads.