Fig and Radish Vibrant Summer Salad

To non-vegans, the concept of a plant-based diet can seem daunting, boring and restrictive. I have to say, the reality is very different! Through eliminating meat, dairy and gluten, I've found my recipes naturally become much more creative. It's not so much about replacing the foods I'm missing, it's more about making the plant recipes I create being exciting and interesting. 

Despite the seemingly endless rain this spring, I've already begun harvesting salad from the garden. Whether you have a tiny patio, huge array or raised beds, or miniature apartment balcony, salad seeds really don't need much space to grow. And the great thing is, once you've cut some salad off, it grows back again! Leaving you with a constant supply. 

I've also found kale really simple to grow. Again, it doesn't need much space and once established you can keep picking leaves and it'll grow new ones

When it comes to preparing salads, I don't have any hard and fast rules. Just that I like it to be interesting with a decent dressing! Nobody wants a bit of limp lettuce and shrivelled cucumber. Rather than stick to the same few boring salad ingredients, why not add fruit, nuts, seeds or edible flowers to your creation? 

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INGREDIENTS

2 fresh figs

6 radishes

Handful of walnuts

Large handful of rocket salad

Large handful of kale

1 tsp Olive oil

Pinch Salt

Juice of half a lemon

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DRESSING

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp wholegrain mustard

1 tsp balsamic vinegar

1 tsp maple syrup 

METHOD

Soften the kale leaves a little by massaging olive oil, salt and lemon into them

Add the kale to a bowl, along with the rocket salad, figs, radishes, walnuts and pine nuts. Toss everything together gently

To make the dressing, add the mustard, olive oil, balsamic and maple syrup to a jar and shake well. Drizzle over the salad

I've decorated my salad with edible kale leaves! Another bonus to growing your own kale

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