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Why salad doesn’t have to be boring

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You don’t make friends with salad, right?

Well not if it’s made of kale, chia seeds and rainbow chard (sorry hipsters!). The good news is there are plenty of delicious ingredients you can throw together to make a salad that’s so much more than just a garnish for a piece of meat.

The first signs of spring are (finally) here. The blossoms are out. The air smells fresh. The body parts you leave outside the blanket don’t freeze overnight and you know what that means… it’s time to shed the dressing gown, step away from the self-saucing pudding and put the slow-cooker back in the cupboard.

It’s time to start eating like you don’t want to spend the rest of the year in a caftan.

Salad really doesn’t have to be boring. I think the key is to use ingredients that you’d actually eat on their own. Think cheeses, eggs, vegetables, grains, fish, fruit, nuts, chicken, pork. Use your imagination! Don’t be afraid to get a little creative.

Don’t think of it as ‘making a salad’ so much as getting a bunch of your favourite ingredients together for a party.

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You want a variety of different colours and textures – some softness, some firmness, some crunch, and a good balance of flavours: A touch of salt. A hint of sweetness. A little acidity.

Don’t limit yourself to your stock standard old salad dressings either. Experiment with different combinations. Use olive oil, citrus, honey, syrup, flavoured vinegars, spices.

It’s also a great way to use any leftover ingredients you have lying around.

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This Haloumi, Pomegranate and Pine Nut Salad came about after I chucked together a bunch of ingredients I had left from other meals (including a random collection of vegetables from the fridge). It’s quick, easy and delicious. And the perfect dish to pull out if you’re having people over and want something pretty and vibrant that brightens up the table. 

Haloumi, Pomegranate and Pine Nut Salad Recipe

Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 20 mins
Serves: 6



180g haloumi, cut to 1cm thickness and then sliced diagonally
1 eggplant, sliced thinly
½ green capsicum, sliced into thin squares
½ red or orange capsicum, sliced into thin squares
½ zucchini, sliced into thin ribbons
¼ cup pomegranate seeds
1 tbsp parsley, roughly chopped
¼ cup of pine nuts, toasted
Lemon wedges to serve

1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
¼ tsp freshly ground pepper
¼ tsp sea salt

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Toast the pine nuts in a dry fry pan over medium heat, moving around regularly for about 5 mins or until golden.

Cook the eggplant, zucchini and capsicum on a griddle pan with a little olive oil til golden brown and a little charred (around 3 mins per side).

Pan fry the halmoumi in a little olive oil over medium heat until golden brown (about 2-3 mins each side).

Mix all the salad dressing ingredients together and shake well to combine.

Assemble your salad in layers with the haloumi on top of the vegetables. Drizzle some dressing over the top and scatter with pomegranate seeds, pine nuts and parsley before serving with lemon wedges.

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