Sunday, July 29, 2012

Warm Brown Rice Salad with Pomegranate Seeds and Grilled Halloumi Cheese

This is a lovely colourful salad.  Halloumi and pomegranate seeds are a classic summer combination.  The honey balances the saltiness of the halloumi and the sharpness of the red onion. 

Ingredients (serves 1)
70g brown rice (dried)
1/4 red onion (about 50g)
50g pomegranate seeds
1/2 red apple (about 50g)
60g reduced fat halloumi cheese, sliced
30g rocket/rucola leaves
1 tsp honey

  • Change into an old T-shirt and prepare the pomegranate!  Quarter the pomegranate and break away the seeds from the skin into a bowl.
  • Cook the brown rice according to instructions.  Leave to cool slightly.
  • Dice the red onion and rinse under cold water to get rid of some of the juice.
  • Dice the apple.
  • Grill the halloumi slices one side only until they turn golden in colour.
  • Put the rocket, onion, apple, pomegranate seeds, honey and rice into a large bowl and mix together.  (If the honey is the set kind, then melt it first for a few seconds in the microwave.
  • Serve on a plate and top with the grilled halloumi cheese.  Eat whilst still warm.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Sweet Chilli Marinated Tuna and Carrot salad

I guess this is a bit like a ceviche actually.  Last night I marinated some fresh cubes of raw tuna and pared carrot for tonight's salad...  The tuna certainly tasted lightly cooked but very tender, and the marinade had also tenderized the raw carrot.  Delicious!

Ingredients (serves 1)
70g fresh raw tuna steak
100g carrot (1 carrot)
30g salad mix of rocket, spinach and watercress (large handful)
juice and zest of 1 lime
1 tsp reduced salt soy sauce
1 tsp sweet chilli sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
a little cress for garnish

Nutrition Info
Calories: 187
Protein: 18.1g
Carbohydrate: 17.2g
Fat: 5.7g
Dietary Fibre: 4g

  • Cut the tuna steak into small cubes.  
  • Using a vegetable peeler, pare off ribbons of carrot.  Put the carrot ribbons and pieces of tuna into a bowl.
  • In a cup, mix the lime juice and zest, soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce and sesame oil.  Toss with the tuna and carrot until everything is well coated.  Cover with cling film and leave in the fridge overnight.
  • When ready to serve, mix with the salad on a plate and garnish with a little cress.

Honey, Lime and Balsamic Dressed Breakfast Fruit Bowl

This is my favourite time of the year for fruit in Britain, when all the berry fruits come into season and are cheapest.  Of course, they are delicious just as they are, but the marinade releases some of the strawberry juice and gives a sweet balance to the tartness of the redcurrants.

1 nectarine
a handful of strawberries
a handful of blueberries
a sprig of redcurrants
juice and zest of 1 lime
1 tsp honey
1 tsp balsamic vinegar

  • Make the fruit salad the night before.  Wash and dry the fruit. Chop the nectarine and strawberries into bite-sized pieces.  Put the strawberries, nectarine and blueberries in a large bowl.
  • In a cup, make the dressing.  Melt the honey briefly in the microwave for a few seconds if it's the set kind.  Add the juice of 1 lime and 1 tsp balsamic vinegar.  Mix together and toss together with the fruit, so that all the fruit has been covered.
  • Garnish with the sprig of redcurrants and the lime zest, cover with cling film and leave overnight.  If it's hot weather, leave it in the fridge...  If in England at the moment, you can leave it on the kitchen bench!  
  • Bring to room temperature before serving.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Mango and Tuna Sashimi Crunchy Vegetable Salad with Sweet Sesame Dressing

 This is a very refreshing summer salad.  the mango has the same melt-in-the-mouth texture as the tuna, and the flavour is brought out by the dressing.  Although it's only 300 calories, I found it quite filling.

If making this outside of Japan, you need to check that the fish is very fresh i.e. caught the same day.  The large Sainsbury's in my town stocks fish that is caught the same day.

Sesame seeds are high in calcium.  A tablespoon of sesame seeds contains about 10% of the RDA for calcium.  However, because of the hard shell, they need to be broken down to make that calcium accessible to the body.  If you can find crushed sesame, so much the better.

Ingredients (per person)
50g very fresh tuna (outside Japan you need to check it's been caught that day - large Sainsbury's in the UK sometimes (often?) do this)
100g celery (2 sticks)
100g cucumber (this is about 1/4 of a British cucumber)
100g mango (1/2 mango)
strips of nori (dried seaweed)
1 tbsp reduced salt soy sauce
1 tbsp mirin
15g ginger paste
15g horseradish sauce (or wasabi to taste)
1 tbsp (approx 10g) white sesame seeds (or better if you can get the crushed ones with more whole sesame seeds for garnish)

Nutrition Info
Calories: 300
Protein: 17.7g
Carbohydrate: 35g
Fat: 8.3g
Dietary Fibre: 6g

  • Make the dressing.  Crush the sesame seeds as much as you can in a pestle and mortar.  You probably can't crush them entirely, but that's OK.  Grinding the seeds releases the flavour and also makes the calcium more accessible to the body.
  • In a cup, mix the soy sauce, mirin, ginger paste, horseradish sauce and ground sesame seeds.  Put in the fridge.
  • Now prepare the salad.  Slice the celery sticks.  Quarter the cucumber lengthways and chop into cubes.  Chop the mango into similar sized pieces to the vegetables.  Chop the raw tuna steak into 1cm cubes.  Put everything into a bowl and mix well with the dressing.
  • You want to eat this salad cold, so if everything hasn't come out of the fridge, you should cover the bowl and put it in the fridge for an hour.  This would also be nice for marinading, for people less impatient than me!
  • Spoon onto a plate or bowl, sprinkle with strips of nori, and enjoy!