Spice up cold weather cooking with these hearty, healthy winter salad ideas from Foodland Ontario. Unlike their summer cousins, winter salads don’t need leafy greens as a base but can include winter vegetables such as cabbages and root vegetables to give them substance and nutrition.
Winter salads provide the perfect partner to a warming soup or stew. Any leftover salad creates an ideal lunch for the next day.
Roasted Vegetable Quinoa Salad
This colourful vegan salad is rich
in beta-carotene, can double as an accompaniment to the dinner menu, and any left over makes a tasty lunch the next day. It may be served warm or chilled.
3 cups (750 mL) peeled, coarsely chopped sweet potatoes, butternut squash or carrots
1 tbsp (15 mL) each, olive oil and maple syrup
1/2 tsp (2 mL) each, salt and ground cumin
1/4 tsp (1 mL) cayenne pepper
1/2 cup (125 mL) quinoa
2/3 cup (150 mL) thinly sliced red onion
3 tbsp (45 ml) each, lemon juice and olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped fresh mint leaves
1/4 cup (50 mL) each, coarsely chopped hazelnuts or almonds and dried apricots
2 tbsp (25 mL) pumpkin seeds (also called pepitas)
Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C). Line baking sheet with parchment paper. In large bowl, stir together sweet potatoes (or squash or carrots) oil, maple syrup, salt, cumin and cayenne. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper and roast 15 to 20 minutes or until vegetables are just tender.
In a sieve, rinse quinoa thoroughly under cold water. Place in medium saucepan and cover with water. Cover; bring to boil; reduce heat and simmer until quinoa is tender, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand covered five to 10 minutes. Fluff with fork.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice, oil, garlic, mint, hazelnuts, dried apricots and pumpkin seeds.
To make salad: In large bowl combine roasted vegetable, quinoa and red onion. Toss with dressing. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Salad keeps well two or three days covered and refrigerated. Makes eight servings.
Lentil Sausage Salad
For convenience, use canned lentils or chickpeas in this hearty salad rich in dietary fibre. The combination of apples, sausage and cabbage is complemented by the unique Eastern European flavour of caraway and dill.
Tip: Any leftover fresh dill may be chopped and frozen for future use; it tastes as if freshly picked.
1 can (19 oz/ 540 mL) lentils or chick peas, drained and rinsed
8 oz (250 g) Italian sausage, sweet or hot, cut into bite-sized pieces
3 cups (750 mL) finely shredded green cabbage or mixture of green and red cabbage
1 carrot, coarsely shredded
1 red-skinned apple cored and thinly sliced
1/4 cup (50 mL) fresh chopped dill
3 tbsp (45 mL) each, olive oil and cider vinegar
1 tbsp (15 mL) liquid honey
1 ½ tsp (7 mL) caraway seeds and Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp (1 mL) each, salt and fresh black pepper
In frying pan, cook sausages with 1 cup (250 mL) water until cooked through, then brown sausages lightly in pan. Remove. Cool and cut sausages into 1-inch (2.5 cm) bite-sized pieces. In large bowl, combine lentils or chickpeas, sausages, cabbage, carrot, apple and dill.
Dressing: Meanwhile, in mixing bowl whisk together oil, vinegar, honey, caraway seeds, dill, salt and pepper until well combined. Pour dressing over salad and toss to combine. Serve salad warm or cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
May be made a day ahead of serving. Makes six to eight servings.
Jan Main is an author, cooking instructor and caterer ~ email@example.com