I love SALAD!!


It’s most definitely salad season here in Japan… Yipeee!!! Absolutely one of my most enjoyed foods.
The joy with salad is, you can go as simple or complex as you like, there are no limits!! Time to get creative…

What type of salad makes your mouth water? I want to try them all!!  Please post your comments 😀

Today, despite the gray dull rainy weather, I never lost my appetite for preparing tonight’s salad.
Perhaps that’s the reason the sun shone for the first and only time today when I decided to photograph my creation…hhhmmmm, maybe 🙂

Recipe:

  • Around 2 cups of spinach
  • 1 shredded carrot
  • 1 shredded small cucumber
  • 1 chopped small red pepper
  • 6 chopped green olives
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1 cup pasta
  • 1/4 cup bulgur wheat
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 9 cherry tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp sunflower seeds
  • A hand full of chopped basil
  • Roughly 2 tbsp chopped coriander
  • 1/2 cup celery leaves
  • 1/2 can tuna(drained)

Dressing:

  • 1 tsp wasabi
  • 1 tbsp Mayo(light)
  • 3 tbsp soy milk

Directions:

  1. Boil your pasta and bulgur in separate pans according to the package instructions.
  2. In the mean time, Wash and chop your veg.
  3. As soon as your pasta and bulgur have finished cooking, rinse with cold water, simply to avoid over cooking and wilting your fresh greens.
  4. Assemble your salad, keeping aside the avocado, tomatoes and sunflower seeds as these are to garnish the salad. Squeeze the lemon juice over and mix through,
  5. For the dressing, combine all ingredients and set aside. I love my wasabi strong, so carefully add and taste, add and taste until you reach your desired strength. Even if you feel it’s still a little over powering, you will find the flavour will mellow out when mixed into your salad.
  6. Drizzle a little of the dressing over each serving.
  7. Finally  garnish with the avocado, seeds and tomatoes.

Enjoy 😛

Edamame Salad with Wasabi Dressing


This weekend was off to a rocky start from Friday night.  Coming home with a head full of stress then waking up at 4.30 am on a Saturday morning worrying about work is something I don’t want repeated.  To top it all off, all the dishes I made completely flopped too.  Definitely something to do with my energy imbalance, I think.  Luckily for me the sun has been on my side and shining beautifully in my direction.

Ever since my knee injuries a little over a year ago now, my exercise regime has pretty much come to a stand still.  My body has been crying out for a decent cardio work out, even more  so now that my blood is beginning to boil over with stress.  I pushed myself to take a dip in the city training pool to work it out of my system.

I’m not a huge fan of swimming, mainly because I’m not great at it, however, desperate measures were called for and now I’m happy I went.  What an amazing workout!   Not as great as a 10k run, but I can’t afford to be picky when it comes to exercise right now.

I couldn’t have asked for a better Sunday either.  Again the weather was glorious!  Still feeling a little fragile, we took a ride to the Buddhist  Chakra temples a short 45min or so bike ride away.  The fresh sunny spring air seems to be all I needed to get things into perspective.  Feeling inspired again and ready for a new, hopefully not so stressful week.

To finish of this slight roller coaster of a weekend I was in the need of a fresh crispy salad with rice of some sort.  Here’s what I came up with; an edamame salad with a wasabi dressing on the side of a mixed Japanese mushroom rice dish.   Also, In the fridge I have a strawberry and blueberry terrine setting as I type.   I hope it’s ready  and turns out successfully for a photo and post tomorrow.

This salad is inspired by a post I found on my foodbuzz page, but changed it to fit the ingredients I bought today.

The dressing is something I came up with a year ago when I was desperate for a dressing at the last-minute.  It has been a regular dip and dressing since.  It tastes much more powerful if you use fresh wasabi, but the paste works well too.   I absolutely love wasabi.  I could easily have it with everything. 😛

Ingredients (Salad):

  • 1 cup shelled edamame
  • handful of sweet basil (torn/chopped)
  • 1 cup of leafy greens
  • 1 cup red cabbage
  • 9 quartered cherry tomatoes
  • a handful chopped spring onions
  • 1 cucumber diced

DRESSING

  • 2 tsp low fat mayo
  • 1 tbsp soy milk
  • 1 tsp wasabi (fresh/ready made paste)

Directions:

Simply assemble the salad mixing all ingredients together then drizzle a little of the dressing to your taste.

As I mentioned I pared up the salad with a Japanese style mushroom rice mix.  I mixed it into brown rice and barley.

Ingredients:

  • 200g japanese mushrooms (I used shitake and maitake)
  • 3 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp Mirin
  • 1 tbsp white sesame seeds
  • 5g bonito flakes
  • some chopped green onions

Directions;

  1. put the soy sauce and the mirin in a small sauce pan and bring to the boil.
  2. add the mushroom and cook until all the liquid is absorbed
  3. mix through the bonito flakes and sesame seeds.
  4. When your rice is ready, simply mix through and serve.

Bellow is a lemon cake which I attempted, however it failed to raise.

On the good side it tasted amazing, so full of flavour.  The texture wasnt fluffy like the recipe stated, but more puddingy, pie like and a wee bitty stodgy.

I actually love stodgy cakes.  I dressed it with some fresh grapes and a drizzle of natural yogurt, which complimented the lemon in the cake beautifully.  It really did burst with spring deliciousness, regardless of the fact it was a bit of a failure.

I will actually make this one again in the hope I make the same mistake as last time 😀

Here is my variation of the linked recipe:

Ingredients: serves 8

  • 1/2 cup yoghurt
  • zest from 1 lemon
  • 1/4 cup of lemon juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pure honey
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1 large egg

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat your oven 350 degrees/ rice cooker to 50 mins on cake setting
  2. beat together the butter and sugar to a fluffy creamy texture
  3. add egg and mix until combined
  4. add honey, lemon juice, yogurt and vanilla
  5. In s separate bowl sift together the baking powder, baking soda, spices and flour
  6. Mix the flour mixture together with the liquid then transfer to a loaf tin or your rice cooker bowl.
  7. Bake for 40-45 mins
  8. allow to cool in the tin before transferring it to a wire cooling tray.

serve with a drizzle of natural yogurt and some halved grapes (or a fruit of your choice)