Chili Garlic Cucumber Salad

So good. I’m thrilled chili garlic sauce is having a moment – I’d completely forgotten about how damn delicious it makes pretty much everything.

This is a nice and light salad – perfect for a quick lunch, or you can beef it up with orzo or soba for a really nice company side. If you need it up, I’d double the dressing.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Chili Garlic Cucumber Salad

1.5 Tbsp chili garlic crisp sauce

1 Tbsp sushi vinegar

1 Tbsp sesame oil

1 Tbsp lime juice

Salt & pepper

3 small Persian cucumbers, chopped

10 cherry tomatoes, halved

150 g small sweet peppers, cut into rings

1/4 c red onion, cut into thin half-moon slices

4 Tbsp mixed herbs (I used dill, lemon thyme and mint), minced

2 Tbsp sushi ginger, chopped

Optional mix-in: rotisserie chicken or other protein

Mix all liquids together in a large bowl to form a dressing. Toss in all the veggies & ginger. Mix in your protein if desired.

Serves 2

Miso Peach Salad

This is a nice little salad – a little salty, some nice umami and a punch of heat.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Miso Peach Salad

1 tsp white miso

2 Tbsp balsamic glaze

3 Tbsp olive oil

Dash lime juice

Dash of heat – I’ve been using chili garlic sauce from Indifoods and adding more to each serving before eating

Salt & pepper

3 small cucumbers, chopped

500g mixed greens

1 kohlrabi, peeled and julienned

3 peaches, chopped

20 cherry tomatoes, halved

Optional toppers: tikka spiced chicken, crunchy seed mix, flaky salt & cracked pepper

In a big bowl, whisk the miso, balsamic, oil, lime juice & heat to form a dressing.

Toss the rest of the ingredients in the dressing and serve with optional toppers.

Serves 3 as a big salad

Strawberry Breakfast Grains

This is a vague nod to the strawberry grain pot from Starbucks – ala @fitmenchef on Instagram. It’s hearty, packed with protein, and quick to whip up in a batch.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Strawberry Breakfast Grains

First, set the grains on to cook by combining:

1c quinoa

3C water

And cooking like you usually cook quinoa. I put mine on the “rice” setting of my slow cooker.

While that is working, make the strawberries.

To do so, combine:

800g frozen strawberries

100ml orange juice

6tsp cinnamon

4t butter

Sprinkle salt & black pepper

1 tsp vanilla powder

Sauté over medium until most of the water evaporates and the mix gets syrupy.

While those are both cooking, make the crème by combining:

350g soft tofu

10Tbsp collagen protein

1c oat milk

1tsp vanilla powder

Blend to combine.

When the quinoa is finished, mix in:

1.5c rolled oats

Let sit to cool.

When all is done, mix the crème into the grains and divide into 7 portions. Top with the strawberries.

To serve, you may want some added sugar – I ended up adding about a teaspoon and a half of maple sugar to each portion. I also added some of my favorite seed mix, though shaved almonds would be even better.

Serves 7

No Added Fat Crispy Air Fryer Potatoes

This is a killer weeknight crispy potato recipe that comes together quickly and requires zero added fat.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, paleo

No Added Fat Crispy Air Fryer Potatoes

1 large baking potato, cut into bite-sized pieces

Lots of salt

A seasoning – I used chicken salt, but your current favorite potato seasoning would be perfect

Generously salt a pot of water.

Add your potatoes and bring up to a boil.

Boil until fork tender, about 8 mins.

During the last few minutes of cooking, preheat your air fryer to 400F.

When the potatoes are tender, drain and chuck back into the pot you cooked them in. Vigorously shake to break the potatoes up a bit and get them messy. Toss with your seasoning and air fry about 12 minutes, shaking a couple times during cooking, until your desired crispiness has been reached.

Serves 2, but can be quickly scaled

Heenat Salad

This is a blind stab at recreating the show-stopping salad served at Heenat Salma Farm last month during the yoga/Pilates day retreat I went to.

It’s not perfect – by far – and I meant to “fix” the issues the original had (too sweet dressing – needed acid and/or heat), but I’m not sure this hit the mark. It’s been like a month since I’ve tasted the original, and all those ingredients were organic farm fresh – so I did what I could.

This rendition is fantastic. Not the same as the other, but definitely craveable.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Heenat Salad

2 nectarines, chopped

8 dates, seeded and chopped

200g feta (I used vegan feta from Sheese), cubed

~2c kale, chopped

~4c red lettuce, chopped

~1/4c red onion, sliced into wafer thin moons

~1/2c walnuts, chopped

~1/2c (roughly 20) black olives, chopped

~1/4c cilantro, chopped

Dressing:

3Tbsp date syrup

2tsp cardamom (ground)

3Tbsp lime juice

6Tbsp olive oil

1tsp smoked paprika

Salt & pepper

Whisk dressing ingredients in a large bowl. Add all the salad ingredients (minus the feta) and massage in. Add the feta, generous salt & pepper and toss to combine.

Serves 4

Tropical Overnight Oats

These decadent-tasting overnight oats are so freakin good – just the thing to welcome myself back into the swing of not-vacation life.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Tropical Overnight Oats

1/3 c rolled oats

2-3 Tbsp pineapple chunks

2 Tbsp coconut flakes

1 Tbsp chia seeds

1 Tbsp protein powder of choice

1/3 c your favorite milk

2 tsp maple syrup

1/2 tsp vanilla

Few grinds salt

Optional topper: seed mix (my fav is a pumpkin & sunflower mix)

Combine all ingredients but the pineapple in an airtight container. Shake vigorously to combine, and let sit overnight.

To serve, top with the pineapple, a few flakes more coconut if desired and your favorite seed mix for crunch.

Serves 1 but is easily scalable

Peanut Butter Onion Salad Toast

Here I am with another weird one, this time from Sudan. This dish sounds bizarre, but is actually quite tasty and filling. I ended up eating half for lunch one day as pictured, and spread the other half over some thinly sliced deli roast beef in a sandwich with mayo the second day. Ah-may-zing. I will have to make this again!

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Peanut Butter Onion Salad Toast

1 small red onion, sliced wafer thin

2 Tbsp no sugar added peanut butter – crunchy is great here

1-2 Tbsp lime juice

1 Tbsp chopped cilantro

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

Add your thinly sliced onion to a bowl and cover with cold water. Massage with a generous pinch salt and let soak 20 minutes.

Drain well and add to a bowl with the rest of the ingredients. Mix well to combine.

Serve over toast with or without roast beef.

Serves 2

Overnight Protein Cheesecake Breakfast

This is a good one. One of my girlfriends shared the recipe, and she was right – this is a breakfast to look forward to.

gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan

Overnight Protein Cheesecake Breakfast

1.5 medium bananas (about 120g)

60g quick oats

1 tsp maple syrup

2 tsp ground cinnamon

Big pinch salt

145g package vegan cream cheese (if your cream cheese will soften, soften it – I did not and I had lumps)

120g Skyr or Greek style vegan yogurt

Juice of 1/2 lemon – about 1 – 3 Tbsp, depending on your dairy and how tart you want your cheesecake

4 servings your favorite plain protein powder

125g package blueberries

1 tsp vanilla

Mash your banana with the oats, maple syrup, cinnamon and salt.

Mush into the bottom of 4 containers (or 1 big one and cut into 1/4 to serve).

Mix the cream cheese, yogurt, lemon juice, protein powder and vanilla together until smooth (or as smooth as you can get it – see above). Fold in the blueberries.

Distribute evenly to the containers and spread in a thick layer.

Let refrigerate overnight.

Serves 4

Chinese Mustard Brussels

I was super shocked when this side was a huge hit with an International audience this Thanksgiving. I warned everyone that came that I had gotten carried away and spiced things to my taste – but … they still liked it. Aussies, French and Brits alike. 🙌🙌🙌🙌🙌

This side wasn’t the star my husband’s bourbon ham was (to be expected) … oooor the Chipotle sweet potatoes I 100% forgot to write any kind of recipe down for – but they were loved. I’ll take the win!

Boooooooooo – this picture sucks, but I forgot in the serving rush to take a better and didn’t end up with leftovers to shoot.

Chinese Mustard Brussels

1.5 lbs brussels sprouts, washed, de-stemmed and quartered

2 Tbsp mustard oil

2 Tbsp sesame oil

1 Tbsp rice vinegar

1 Tbsp smoked paprika

2 Tbsp Chinese mustard

4 Tbsp sesame seeds

4 Tbsp nutritional yeast

2 tsp red chili flakes

Salt & white pepper

First, prep your Brussels by washing them, cutting off the stem ends and quartering.

Preheat your air fryer on 400 for 3 minutes.

Toss the prepped Brussels with the oils, vinegar, paprika, and generous sprinkles salt & white pepper.

Air fry, tossing a few times, until nicely browned – about 15 mins.

When nice and roasted, toss with the mustard, sesame seeds, nutritional yeast and chili flakes to serve.

Makes a nice side for 6 in a Thanksgiving spread.

Chili Lime Couscous Salad

Another great batch cook lunch salad. This one is great with a hand full of shredded rotisserie chicken as the protein.

vegetarian, vegan

Chili Lime Couscous Salad

1 cup Israeli couscous

1.5 cups water or stock

Olive oil

1 medium onion, sliced into thin moons

3 large cloves garlic, minced

1 bunch broccolini, chopped

1 small bell pepper, chopped

2 cups shredded red cabbage

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

Juice & zest of 2 limes

1 large scallion, sliced into thin rings

Tajin, salt & pepper

Slice the onions into thin moons. Sauté in a glug of oil over medium/medium-high heat 10-15 minutes or until softened and beginning to color.

Add the garlic & couscous and sauté 1-2 minutes.

Add the water or stock and simmer 10 minutes.

Add the broccolini and half the lime zest and sauté an additional 5 minutes or until the broccolini & couscous are both cooked to your liking.

Add all the chopped veggies and the other half of the zest to a large bowl. Toss with the lime juice and a good glug or two of olive oil.

Add the couscous when done and toss.

Sprinkle generously with Tajin, salt & pepper, toss. Taste for seasoning, adjust & toss again.

Serve with your protein of choice.

Makes 5 – 6 servings