May 14, 2014

Winter rainbow salad – Fennel, rocket, radish, apple and pomegranate

Some days when I feel a little flat, some bold, bright and cheerful colour is all it takes to snap me out of it.  It can be a tree-lined road of Poplars in my home town of Orange bursting with their sunny yellows or flame reds or even a rainbow peeking out from behind the clouds. Although some days this is the moment when I open my fridge and see a rainbow of fruits and vegetables which inspires me to create a beautiful winter salad.

Today I could see there was a mountain of pink lady apples picked up at the local apple festival last weekend, half a fennel and avocado, a few radishes, one pomegranate, and some fresh rocket and bushes of parsley in our garden. Other ingredients which would highlight the rainbow of colours would be golden beets, persimmons, yellow capsicum, pink grapefruit…too many choices.

A beautiful salad right there, cleansing and delicious! You can layer the following ingredients together on a plate and top with a splash of white balsamic vinegar infused with garlic, coriander and lemon. A little extra virgin olive oil would complement too.

I must be doing something right, because whenever I prepare green vegetables (amongst other ingredients) like now, my baby boy always seems to enjoy picking the dropped greens up off the floor and putting them into his mouth! Waste not, want not…he’s learning early.

Fennel, rocket, radish salad

This is the time to get serious about building our immune systems before the winter season by consuming foods rich in antioxidants, immune boosting vitamins and minerals. Here are a few health benefits highlighted for each ingredient in my salad…

Fennel – high in Vitamin C, antimicrobial as well as a very good source of fibre and potassium.

Rocket / Arugula – Rich in Vitamin C, chlorophyll for cleansing the blood, Vitamin A which is important for respiratory health.

Radishes – Also high in Vitamin C (half a cup is 15% of your DRI), they are good for the liver and stomach so are a mighty detoxifying vegetable.

Apples – More Vitamin C and a good dose of fibre, Quercetin (a flavonoid) helps respiratory issues.

Pomegranate – Another rich source of Vitamin C with anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties.

Avocado – One serious health food due to containing in excess of 25 essential nutrients (Vit-A, B, C, E & K), magnesium, copper, iron, phosphorous and potassium.

Parsley – Rich in another flavonoid called apigenin and high density of Vitamin K, C and A.

So there you have it, one essential and simple salad to make regularly while these ingredients are available to you seasonally.

This salad is also a fantastic base for so many other items; last weekend I made it with fresh sardines and the caviar pearls of finger limes (availability coming into markets like Flemington in Sydney this week).

Fennel, rocket, radish salad with finger limes

I could see that other seafood or slow tender cooked warm lamb or even milky buffalo mozzarella could all work so well with this salad.




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