Eating healthily doesn’t automatically transpire into only eating salads. Ironically though, I think I could, (and most often do) eat salads for every meal. Salads aren’t just about eating vegetables, nor are they bland. In fact, if you like flavour, salads are a great because in some ways, you’re just throwing ingredients together in a bowl and enjoying the combination of it all.
Ten years ago, I’d have thought that slices of cucumber, tomato and baby spinach leaves drowned in Paul Newman’s Own Balsamic Dressing was what constituted a salad, and sure it’s a salad, but the flavour isn’t so incredibly delicious that I crave it at every meal. Ten years ago, I’d have never seasoned my salad with salt and pepper. I had a friend who explained she did this in her family and I thought she was crazy– thanks for that lesson Steph. These days, I make my own salad dressings and I do season with salt and pepper and a few other things too. In my salads, fresh lemon is non-negotiable (season-permitting) and herbs are used liberally. I like to combine some sort of grain or legume with vegetables and fruit, fresh sprouts and a good source of fat like avocado, extra virgin olive oil or sunflower seeds– or just all three.
This salad at breakfast time does what toast does– it gives you that instant carb-y satisfaction without leaving you ravenous by 10am. And that’s because of the combination of good carbohydrates, healthy fats and protein. Buckwheat is one of may favourite grains to eat raw or cooked, mostly because it’s incredibly versatile– pancakes, soba noodles, granola! Buckwheat is really high in protein– 22.5g for every one cup of protein. For the average 50-60kg woman, that’s half the daily recommended intake, and when you’re relying only on plant-based protein, that’s huge! Keep in mind though, buckwheat is not a complete protein, as it doesn’t contain all the 9 essential amino acids, so just make sure you have some lentils or chickpeas, quinoa, almonds or hemp seeds throughout the day too. Buckwheat is rich in soluble fibre which is great for your digestive system and helps keep your blood sugar levels at bay. It’s also rich in Magnesium which is crucial for bone health and great for reducing cramps. Buckwheat is a potent antioxidant and anti inflammatory thanks to the bioflavanoid, rutin which lives beneath the tiny grain’s shell.
- 1 Cup Buckwheat, soaked overnight
- 1 Cup Kale, finely chopped
- 1 Cup Chopped herbs– I used coriander, parsley and mint
- 1/4 Cup dukkah
- 1 Avocado, sliced
- 1 Lemon, juiced
- 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Fresh Green Chilli, finely sliced
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt, or to taste
- 1/4 Teaspoon pepper
- Rinse buckwheat, empty into a saucepan and fill with water to cover 2cm over the buckwheat. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes. If there is any remaining water, just drain it off.
- While the buckwheat is cooking, place the chopped kale into a bowl with half of the lemon, 1 tbsp of olive oil and a pinch of salt, and give it a good massage– this helps make it a lot more palatable.
- Add the cooked buckwheat, herbs, dukkah, green chilli, remaining lemon and olive oil, salt and pepper to the bowl with the kale and mix to combine (I think using your hands is the best way).
- Serve onto two plates and top with avocado as desired. You may also like to sprinkle more dukkah on top.