Salad, but not as you know it
THE new year, for most of us, is about starting afresh whether it be with life, a new job, looking at our health and fitness or just stepping outside the box and trying something new. This recipe uses some of my favourite ingredients and although they may sound a little strange they are all readily available either online or through your local health food shop.
Kelp noodle salad
INGREDIENTS: ◗ 1 packet of kelp noodles (450g)
◗ 2 bunches of asparagus, trimmed of the woody end and blanched ◗ 200g green beans, trimmed and blanched
◗ Small bunch of coriander (one big handful), chopped ◗ 2 avocados ◗ 1 tblsp black sesame seeds ◗ ¼ cup of dried seaweed, soaked in warm water until softened and drained
◗ 400g water melon, sliced
DRESSING: ◗ 1 tblsp ginger, minced ◗ 1 fresh chilli, minced (according to how hot you like it, you may want to leave the seeds in) ◗ 3⁄4 cup crushed peanuts ◗ 3 tblsp tamari
◗ 1 heaped tblsp tahini ◗ 1⁄4 cup toasted sesame oil ◗ Juice of half a lemon ◗ Salt to taste
METHOD: Remove the noodles from the packet and refresh with cold water, drain and let them sit over the sink to remove all the excess water. To blanch the asparagus and the beans, bring a pot of water to the boil large enough to hold the greens. Have a bowl of very cold/iced water at hand and a colander. Once the water has boiled, add in the beans and the asparagus and cook for 2 minutes until bright green, drain immediately and then refresh in the icy water to stop the cooking process. Drain off the excess water and set them aside.
In a jar, combine all dressing ingredients and give it a good shake. Into your salad bowls, add in the drained kelp noodles, evenly distribute the asparagus, green beans and give each person half an avocado. Scatter over the soaked seaweed and black sesame seeds and garnish with a piece of melon and roughly chopped coriander. Serve the dressing either poured over the top or in little dishes on the side.
◗ Kelp noodles can be purchased from health food websites online and in some selected health and Japanese food stores. They will keep in the fridge for up to a couple of weeks covered in fresh water. Refresh the water every two to three days. They are a fantastic alternative to rice.
Kelp noodle salad with blanched asparagus, melon, black sesame and a ginger and soy dressing.