blogmas day 7! how exciting! it's been a week of this everyday blogging thing and i'm low-key impressed with myself *snaps* *jazz hands*. mum and i enjoyed this salad for dinner tonight with some smoked salmon on top, for some added protein. with all this warmer weather* lately, i've been looking for meals that are lighter, fresher. this salad hits the spot perfectly.
roast vegetables have always had a special place in my heart. around the corner from the house we lived in when i was little, a cute cafe opened up a couple of years after we moved there. it was cool, hip and trendy*. on the weekends, if we were meeting family friends after saturday sport or if it was a special occasion, we'd go there for lunch. if we were drinking, i'd have the butterscotch milkshake. if we were eating, i would always order the roast vegetable toasted focaccia. it was warm, crunchy and deliciously oily. the eggplant was warm, the capsicum was thick and creamy, and the pumpkin was seasoned to perfection. ever since that sandwich and those lunches with my family in that small and trendy cafe around the corner, anything with a roasted vegetable has been on my hit list.
*it should be noted, it was also 2008. 2008 jess did funny things, like wear black denim vests over her t-shirts and headbands. she watched cartoons from 4 til 6 on weekdays and woke up extra early on saturday morning before netball to watch saturday disney on channel 7 (wizards of waverly place was a favourite, though all disney was held in high regard).
so, here's a salad that brings back memories of saturday afternoons in a small cafe, and now holds new ones of a thursday night dinner on the couch with mum.
notes: you'll notice that the only dressing i've used in this recipe is the squeezed lemon on the salad. this is because of the oil and seasonings used in the roasted vegetables. the extra oil adds some flavour and liquid to the salad, while the saltiness of the olives and the tastiness of the za'atar packs some extra punch!
Roasted Vegetable & Mint Salad
1 red capsicum
1 c pumpkin
1 tb za'atar
3 tb extra virgin olive oil
half an avocado
2/3 c cherry tomatoes
1/2 c green olives
1/2 c snow peas
1/4 c mint leaves
1 c spinach
1/4 c pine nuts
preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius and prepare two baking trays.
chop the capsicum, halve the carrots and cube the pumpkin. season the vegetables with the oil, salt, pepper and za'atar and roast them for one hour in the oven. set aside to cool slightly.
combine the snow peas, mint leaves, pine nuts, avocado, cherry tomatoes, spinach and olives in a bowl. squeeze half a lemon over the top of the vegetables. add the roasted vegetables to the bowl and toss the salad slightly.
serve immediately or cover with plastic wrap and store in the fridge until ready for serving.
- jess x