Getting ahead and prepping a few things gives you more time and headspace to get on with everything else in your life.
It also means you are less likely to grab something unhealthy or ‘off-plan’ in a rush.
This salad is a brilliant summer go-to for me during the week when time is tight and I need to know I have something delicious and healthy on hand. It’s a brilliant base that you can turn into lots of other things too – so you’ll never get bored.
Again there is no cooking required here – just a bit of chopping and combining – as this is essentially just a salad of robust vegetables and beans with a really punchy kick from vinegar, capers and freshchilli. As it will sit in your fridge you want to avoid adding any soft leaves or herbs that will wilt or spoil inthe dressing. Instead keep these separately and add them to each plate as you serve.
The dressing is heavy on vinegar (I like a ratio of at least 3:1 with olive oil) so it’s the complete reversal ofyour usual salad dressing. As such, it’s worth seeking out a really good flavorful vinegar like Willy’s Live Apple Cider Vinegar with Honey and Turmeric, Aspall’s Apple Balsamic or a 5 year+ aged sherry vinegar.Beyond this (as ever) the quality of the salad relies on the quality of your ingredients – so get the best and freshest you can get hold of.
Makes enough for at least 3 lunches with add ons. Best eaten at room temperature.
Courtesy of Cook Folk
2 cups of Cooked Beans (any good quality jarred or canned beans will do but I like a mix)
Half a Cucumber, halved lengthways and seeds removed (reserve any pulp and seeds for the Cucumber and Mint water)
1 cup Tomatoes, quartered if small or chopped (Isle of Wight are wonderful at this time of year)
1 Red Pepper, sliced into thin batons (I like the thin skinned Romano peppers)
1 tbs Capers
1 fresh Red or Green Chilli, finely chopped
1 tbs Pickles (I usually make a batch of quick pickled radishes or daikon to keep in the fridge but shop bought ones do just as well)
1-2 tbs Olive Oil (best quality cold pressed and unfiltered if you can)
3-6 tbs Vinegar (a really flavourful one)
Combine all the ingredients together in a bowl and allow to mingle at room temperature before eating
Make a big batch to use as a base for lunches and suppers and store leftovers in an airtight container in your fridge
A jar or can of good quality line caught tuna
Sliced leftover grilled chicken breast
Flaked leftover roast salmon/trout
Julienned raw carrots
Chopped raw cauliflower
Any salad leaves
Any soft herbs you fancy; parsley, mint, basil, tarragon (I usually have a tray of microherbs growing on the windowsill to snip from – terribly easy if you’ve never tried!)
Sauerkraut or Kimchi
Toasted chopped nuts
Cooked wholegrains; freekeh, pearl barley, quinoa, wild rice