A Great Big Lunchtime Salad Bowl

Clea Grady

Vegan salad

OK, so it’s true… vegans do eat salad! But we’re not talking a few sad looking lettuce leaves and half a tomato on the side of your plate. This is big, and flavourful, and filling! Chuck it all in a bowl and dig right on in. Couldn’t be easier.

  1. 2 x baby gem lettuce
  2. Half a (large) bag of kale
  3. 1 x red pepper
  4. 1 x green pepper
  5. 3 x celery stalks
  6. About 10cm of cucumber
  7. 2 x gherkins
  8. A good handful of kalamata and green olives
  9. Half a bag of ready-to-eat puy lentils
  10. 1 x packet of Cauldron marinated tofu (or similar by another brand)
  11. Balsamic vinegar
  12. Olive oil
  13. Sunflower seeds (toasted)
  14. Salt and pepper to taste

Serves 2 as a big lunch, or 4 if having something with it – like bread and (more) olives, and other tapas-y things.

You can really do this in any particular order. Ultimately it all gets mixed up!

  • In a fry pan chuck a good handful or two of sunflower seeds and dry fry. You want them slightly browned, so they have a lovely nutty taste. Put them to the side while you do the rest
  • Rip up the lettuce heads into a colander and wash. Then add the kale and wash, massaging as you go. (Massaging kale seems hilarious at first, but it does help it to soften, and basically you’re just rubbing it between your fingers. When I first started eating raw kale I found it quite tough, so the more you massage it then softer it gets. If the kale is very fresh you may hardly need to do this. It really is a case of personal taste. I don’t notice the toughness of kale in the same way I used to, because I eat it such a lot.) Rip the kale and lettuce into smaller pieces, and discard any woody kale stalks
  • Chop up your peppers, celery, cucumber, gherkins, olives and chuck in a big bowl
  • Add the puy lentils and marinated tofu and mix well
  • Add the lettuce and kale bit by bit, mixing as you go. A good salad is one where you get a bit of everything, so try to evenly distribute
  • Add the sunflower seeds, a good splash of olive oil and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar
  • Crack pepper over the top and a little salt if you think it needs it
  • Serve in big bowls and enjoy!

Additions: Crusty bread, hummus, more olives, guacamole, aubergine dip or a tomato, red onion and basil salad all go well with this. Create a table of colour with the salad as the centre piece! Also perfect picnic grub on a lovely summer day. This is a filling salad though, and delicious just as it is.

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