Summer is once again upon us, and with that, we can look forward to a well-deserved break after a tough year. While we will still remain socially distanced and responsible, smaller gatherings are what make this time of year special, where we get to spend time with the special people in our lives. To beat the heat but still serve up something delicious, here are four summer salads for every occasion.
Everyday salad on a budget
Not every salad has to include the traditional elements like feta cheese and olives, which can end up being quite pricey if you’re catering for more than just yourself. The team at Yebo Fresh, a local e-tailer that delivers groceries to the communities of Cape Town, recommends a minimalist approach to salad, that still packs a punch in flavour and nutrients.
Protein-packed everyday salad:
- 2 cups of chopped spinach
- 1 can of tinned tuna in water (drained)
- ½ cup of sliced cucumber
- 1 carrot, chopped
- ½ tomato, sliced
- 1 teaspoon mayonnaise as dressing (optional)
- Gather all ingredients, mix in a bowl and serve.
“This salad is the perfect lunch for summer, with a great balance of nutritious ingredients that taste great too”, says Jessica Boonstra, founder and CEO of Yebo Fresh. “One can easily slip into the comfort and convenience of fast food, especially during the holiday season, but having a quick and healthy go-to meal can save on cost and is better for your health.”
Regardless of whether you’re hosting a braai for your friends on a Saturday night, or preparing a weekday dinner party, this salad is sure to impress any kind of guest.
Roasted butternut and beetroot salad:
- 2 cups of chopped butternut
- 2 cups of chopped beetroot
- 2 handfuls of rocket
- Feta cheese (as much as you’d like)
- 1 handful of pumpkin and sunflower seeds
- Dressing: ¼ cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and a tablespoon of honey. Add salt and pepper to taste
- Roast the butternut and beetroot in the oven for 45 minutes at 220 degrees Celsius.
- Add the roasted vegetables to a serving bowl along with the rocket and feta cheese. Sprinkle over the pumpkin and sunflower seeds and serve with the dressing.
Holiday season salad
This tangy potato salad is a great accompaniment to a meal during the holiday season. Dish up a helping of this delicious side to go along with hot or cold meals.
Dill potato salad:
- 8 potatoes
- 1 large red onion, diced
- 1 cup of mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon of Dijon mustard
- 1 bunch of fresh dill, chopped
- 4 or 5 (dill) gherkins, diced
- A dash of fresh lemon
- Salt and pepper to taste
1. Peel the potatoes and cut them into eighths.
2. Place the potatoes in a large pot, add a dash of salt and cover with boiling water. Bring to the boil and allow to simmer until you can easily pierce through a potato with a fork (around 15 minutes).
3. Drain the potatoes and allow to cool.
4. In a bowl, mix your diced gherkin, diced red onion, mayonnaise, mustard, dill, squeeze of lemon and salt and pepper to taste. Stir until it forms a thick dressing.
5. Spoon the dressing over the cooled potatoes and stir together until potatoes are coated.
6. Place in the fridge for a couple of hours and then serve.
The summer months call for fresher, lighter desserts, and a freshly chopped salad is the perfect end to any meal. This berry pavlova is the perfect accompaniment to a summer meal, courtesy of Chef Norman Heath at Radisson Blu Waterfront, Cape Town.
For the Swiss meringue
- 95g of egg whites (about 3 egg whites)
- 110g of granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
- In a heatproof bowl, whisk together the egg whites and sugar.
- Place the bowl over a small pan with simmering water, making sure the water doesn’t touch the bowl and the water is simmering.
- Keep whisking the mixture until the sugar has dissolved. You can easily check whether the sugar has dissolved by rubbing a bit of the mixture between your fingers; the mixture shouldn’t feel grainy. If you’re not worried about salmonella, you can take the mixture off the heat at this point.
- If you want to pasteurise the meringue, keep whisking until the mixture reaches a temperature of 71°C/160°F. Once the meringue reaches the desired temperature, take it off the heat.
- Using a handheld or a stand mixer, beat the warm mixture until the meringue holds the desired peak (soft, medium or stiff) and has cooled to room temperature.
- With a large spoon place the meringue onto a lined baking tray and make the desired size pavlova.
- Place the pavlova into a 150°C oven and bake for 1 hour.
- As with all meringues, it is best made just before use, but you can also make this meringue a day in advance and keep it in an airtight container in the fridge.
For the berry coulis
- 1kg bag of frozen mixed berries
- 500g granulated sugar
- Place all the ingredients into a pot.
- Give it a stir till the berries are coated in sugar.
- Allow for the mixture to come to a gentle boil, once boiling bring down the heat to a simmer.
- Allow the mix to simmer until it becomes saucy.
- At this stage if you are happy with the consistency of the coulis remove from the heat and you can either strain the berry mix for a smooth sauce or transfer the whole mix as is into an airtight container to allow for cooling time.
- The coulis then will be used to coat the whipped cream on your pavlova.
Assembling your pavlova
You will need:
- The dried Pavlova base
- Bulgarian yoghurt (a healthier option than cream)
- Berry coulis
- Fresh berries
- Honey (optional)
- Place your pavlova onto a plate that fits the size you have made.
- Take your Bulgarian yoghurt and spread it on top of the pavlova. Be generous with your spread, drizzle with honey for added sweetness.
- Then take the cooled berry coulis and spoon it onto your yoghurt. Be careful not to mix it in too much, you should see layers when doing this.
- Lastly, to finish off your pavlova, top it off with fresh berries.
- Eat immediately before the pavlova becomes soggy.
About Yebo Fresh
Yebo Fresh is inspired by the need for transformation in the world of township shopping, as well as for making quality, fresh food and household goods accessible to all. Read more at: https://www.yebofresh.co.za/