Avocado, tempeh and tomato salad

This is a great salad to eat as a light meal or lunch. If you want a really fast meal you could buy tempeh that is already in a marinade and skip that step, and use a spicy pre-made salad dressing.

400g plain tempeh cut into bite sized cubes

Marinade for tempeh:
3 tablespoons Tamari
2 teaspoons chilli flakes, or else chilli paste or sauce
1 teaspoon Spanish smoked paprika (I use sweet rather than hot)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 finely sliced red onion
3 cups lettuce leaves (can use variety of leaves, including rocket)
3 cups baby spinach leaves
small red capsicum, finely sliced
1/2 cup stoned kalamata olives
2 sliced plum tomatoes
2 small or 1 large avocado, peeled and sliced
optional: you can add some toasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds

4 tablespoons good quality olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon chilli paste or sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Marinade the chopped tempeh for a couple of hours preferably, or even overnight. Fry in the oil until brown and crispy. Put aside.

Mix all the salad ingredients together in a large bowl. Make the dressing by whisking together the dressing ingredients.

Sprinkle tempeh over salad, then drizzle the dressing over the top. Serve.


Carrot, Beetroot, Fig and Grain salad

This recipe is also from The French Market Cookbook.  Very simple – don’t be put off by the list of ingredients.

2 cups cooked bulgur wheat (or couscous, brown rice, quinoa etc – whatever you have to hand)

3 medium carrots peeled and grated (~380g)

2 medium beetroots peeled and grated (~340g)

3 dried figs chopped finely (I use sliced fresh figs if I have them)

1/2 cup roast cashew nuts, unsalted and chopped

1 cup fresh parsley, chopped

2 tablespoons lemon juice

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons olive oil

ground black pepper to taste

hot sauce to taste


Combine grain, carrots, beetroot, figs, cashews and parsley in a large bowl.

Make dressing and pour over: whisk lemon juice, vinegar and salt together.

Sprinkle salad with black pepper and hot sauce to taste, then stir to combine.  Serve.


Green bean, rice and almond salad

This recipe is from The French Market Cookbook by Clotilde Dusoulier – she has a great blog chocolateandzucchine.com

900g green beans

3 tablespoons almond butter

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon cider vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

3 cups cooked rice, or a mix of brown rice, quinoa, etc (I use the pre cooked sachets you can get in the supermarket if I am short of time)

2/3 cups toasted almonds – I use flaked

1 cup chopped fresh parsley

Ground black pepper to taste


Steam the green beans (a fast alternative is to wash them, top and tail them then cut in half, and then put into a microwave safe dish, cover with plastic film and cook on high for a couple of minutes – then rinse under cold water).

Make dressing in a salad bowl: whisk together almond butter, olive oil, lemon juice, vinegar, and salt.

Add the green beans and coat in the dressing.  Add rice, parsley and seasoning.  Serve.


I topped with some sliced fresh figs because I like them

I topped with some sliced fresh figs because I like them

Quinoa, Mushroom, Asparagus and Avocado Salad with Oven-Baked Chickpea Patties

Quinoa Salad

1/2 cup quinoa

1 cup vegetable stock

2 teaspoons olive oil

1.5 cups sliced mushrooms

1 bunch asparagus, chopped into 2cm pieces

1/2 medium lemon, juiced

1/2 avocado, cubed into 1cm pieces

2 tablespoons flaked almonds, toasted

salt and pepper to taste

1 teaspoon flax oil (use another oil if you don’t have flax)


First prepare the quinoa:  wash and drain, then put in pot with stock and boil until all the stock had been absorbed, stirring occasionally.  Then spread out on plate or board to cool.

At the same time, roast the vegetables:  mix sliced mushrooms with 1 teaspoon olive oil and bake on baking sheet for 10 minutes at 200 degrees C, then add the chopped asparagus after tossing in the other teaspoon of olive oil and bake another 10-20 minutes until it’s as cooked and concentrated as you prefer.  When cooked, sprinkle with the lemon juice.

Mix everything together in a bowl and serve.


Oven-baked Chickpea Patties

2 cloves minced garlic

1/2 cup of each of the following: parsley, mint, coriander – chopped roughly

1 can chickpeas, drained

1/2 cup breadcrumbs (use rice or other non-wheat crumbs for gluten free)

1/2 cup besan (chickpea flour) – or use any other type of flour

1 medium onion, diced

4 tablespoons tahini

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 teaspoons ground coriander

oil for cooking – I use a spray can of rice bran oil


Using a food processor, chop herbs and garlic together until finely chopped.  Put into a large bowl.

Chop chickpeas until fine in the food processor – use the ‘pulse’ function to avoid turning them into a paste.

Add chickpeas and the remaining ingredients (except oil) to the herb mixture, and mix well.

Shape into little patties and put onto oiled oven tray.  Spray or brush with oil.

Bake for 15 minutes at 180 degrees C, then flip and oil the other side, and bake a further 15 minutes or so.  They should be dark brown and crispy.

Serve with the quinoa salad above, plus some hummus or other dip, and olives.


Variation: you can fry these in hot oil, which will make them tastier but much higher calorie.

When quickly reheating things like the chickpea patties, I use a sandwich press to keep them crisp rather than microwaving.