Tag: salad

16 Recipes for Winter Salads

Celeriac Kumquat Salad

Despite the grey skies and frosty temperatures that come along with Berlin’s long lasting winter, I’ve been in the mood for salads surprisingly often this January. Cozy soups, stewy and rich, would have been more obvious, but no, my appetite longs for winter salads. Celeriac, cabbage, beans, roots, and potatoes inspire my cooking and satisfy my longings for fresh vegetables. And thanks to the addition of citrus fruits, fresh coconut, or turmeric root I never get bored. If you feel the same, take a look at these scrumptious compositions collected on Eat In My Kitchen over the past 3 years (click the titles for the recipes):

Celeriac Salad with Cardamom-Yoghurt, Caramelized Honey Kumquats, and Walnuts

Celeriac Kumquat Salad


Blood Orange, Olive, and Red Onion Salad with Rucola

Blood Orange Olive Rucola Salad


Green Bean, Pea and Kumquat Salad with Turmeric and Mint

Bean Pea Kumquat Salad


Potatoes with Cinnamon Hummus, Basil, and Prawns

Potatoes Hummus Prawns


Beetroot Carpaccio with fresh Coconut and Coriander

Beet Root Coconut Carpaccio


Mediterranean Octopus, Fennel and Orange Salad

Octopus Fennel Orange Salad


Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise

Bean Pea Tahini Mayonnaise


Orange and Fennel Couscous with Orange Blossom Water and Mint

Orange and Fennel Couscous


Belgian Endive and Radicchio Salad with Persimmons

Radicchio Endive Persimmon Salad


Mozzarella di Bufala, Rucola, Orange, and Chervil Salad

Orange Mozzarella Rucola Salad


A Salad with Winter Purslane, Sautéed Mushrooms, and Nasturtium Flowers

Winter Purslane, Mushroom and Flowers


Belgian Endive, Pomegranate, and Orange Salad with fresh Turmeric

Endive Pomegranate Turmeric


Green Beans, Pear and Walnut Salad with Bacon 

Bean, Pear and Bacon Salad


La Ratte Potatoes with Roast Lemon Peel, Olives and Parsley

Potato and Lemon Peel Salad


and from my book:

Radicchio, Peach, and Roasted Shallot Salad with Blue Cheese (you can replace the peach with ripe persimmon or pear)

Radicchio Peach Shallots


Bavarian Cabbage Salad with Crispy Bacon

(I’m sorry, there’s no picture to share, the quality is too bad. It was one of my early blog recipes …)


Celeriac Kumquat Salad

Avocado, Melon and Fennel Salad with Mint

Avocado, Melon and Fennel Salad

This is the official start to my salad season. In the next month, I’ll be indulging – daily – in simple yet scrumptious compositions of tasty vegetables and juice-dripping fruits. Chopped and tossed with a quick vinaigrette or just a dash of olive oil and some flaky sea salt from Gozo. Ripe tomatoes, cucumber, fennel, radicchio, carrots and peas, the sweetest peaches, pears, and plums – summertime offers a firework of flavours and I’m ready to celebrate each single one of them.

My next few weeks will bring the kind of temperature into my life that makes you think twice if it’s really necessary to switch on the gas cooker. We’ll be off to Malta soon and that means it will be 30°C (90°F) in the early morning and more than 40°C (105°F) at noon – this calls for a different menu. It’ll be hot, but I won’t complain, it’s the time of the year that I look forward to the most. I can run around in an airy dress all day and late night swims won’t leave me chilled – it’s warm enough to sit on the rocks with wet hair when the sun has already sunk into the sea. I can basically live outside 24 hours a day, that’s my kind of paradise.

In the Mediterranean, you have to go with the flow and stay flexible, so we keep the cooking plan as open as possible to adjust to our mood. You can always find a large jar of fresh, homemade basil pesto in the fridge and, of course, the whole variety of Malta’s crop fresh from my favourite farmer Leli’s fields, all piled up on the table and shelves. Fresh oregano, marjoram, basil, and the spiciest arugula are ready to be picked in the garden and always at hand to refine a chunk of creamy mozzarella di bufala, a crunchy bruschetta from the BBQ, or a 5-ingredient pasta dish: Give me spaghetti, olive oil, salt, pepper, and fresh herbs and I’m happy. If I’m lucky, there will still be a few lemons on the tree in the family garden in Msida. The season’s over but my Maltese mama always keeps a few fruits on the tree for me, she knows how much a German girl enjoys the treat of picking the lemon for her morning tea straight from the branch.

I decided that I’ll spoil myself with a kind of luxury that doesn’t cost anything: To slow down and keep it simple, to let go of constant planning and rigid expectations. I know that I’ll sit at the sea for hours, quite possible every day, but that’s as far as my schedule goes. We’ll be away for a month to stay with our Mediterranean family, we won’t stop working, but we’ll definitely take a great chunk of time off, it will be a different pace. To give myself enough time for the transition from my northern to my southern rhythm, I’ll prepare a few recipes here in Berlin to share with you in the first two weeks of my holiday. Once I get into the groove, I’ll write about my Maltese kitchen life. Until then, I will enjoy a foretaste of what my taste buds have to expect: a simple salad of velvety avocado, honey-sweet Cantaloupe melon, and crispy fennel – topped with fresh mint and a light vinaigrette.

Avocado, Melon and Fennel Salad


Avocado, Melon and Fennel Salad

Avocado, Melon and Fennel Salad with Mint

Serves 2

For the dressing

olive oil 3 tablespoons
white balsamic vinegar 1 tablespoon
freshly squeezed lemon juice 1 tablespoon
fine sea salt
ground pepper

For the salad

soft avocado, peeled and cut into thin wedges, 1
small fennel bulb, cored and very thinly sliced, 1
small Cantaloupe melon, peeled and cut into thin wedges, 1/2
fresh mint leaves, a small handful

For the dressing, whisk the olive oil, vinegar, and lemon juice and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Arrange the avocado, fennel, and melon in layers in a wide bowl. Drizzle with the dressing and sprinkle with mint leaves and serve immediately.

Avocado, Melon and Fennel Salad





Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise and Basil

Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise

I’ve never been a big fan of mayonnaise but this recipe changed everything, now I’m hooked on it! Mix this dip with a little tahini, juice and the zest of a lemon to lighten up it’s rather heavy qualities and you’ll understand what I’m talking about.

When it comes to mayonnaise, I’ve always been quite picky. The ones from the store are not an option for me at all, at least I’ve never found a good one. I always make my own from scratch like I learned from my mother, with good olive oil and fresh organic egg yolks. When it’s mixed with crushed garlic, like the Spanish Aïoli, I can actually enjoy it a lot, especially when I have a fresh loaf of bread at hand.

So a few days ago I decided to make a fresh salad of greens, crunchy beans and peas quickly blanched until al dente. When I thought about the dressing I started to play around with different recipes in my mind. We had just received a culinary gift from a friend of ours who just got back to Berlin after a quick visit to his family in Israel. He brought a huge jar of delicious tahini to my kitchen which I usually turn into Hummus right away, but not this time. I mixed a spoonful of it with lemony and garlicky mayonnaise to top my summery salad sprinkled with spring onions and basil, it was more than delish!

Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise


Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise

Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise

You could whisk the mayonnaise by hand but I use a stick mixer and a small mug which guarantees a thick and creamy result.

For 2 as a lunch or 4 as a side dish you need

green beans, the ends snipped off, 550g / 1 1/4 pounds
peas, fresh or frozen, 140g / 5oz
salt and pepper
olive oil 1 tablespoon
small spring onion, cut into slim rings, 1
fresh basil, about 12 leaves

For the mayonnaise

garlic, crushed, 1 clove
freshly squeezed lemon juice 4 teaspoons
fresh organic egg yolks 2
quality olive oil 75ml / 1/3 cup
tahini 1 tablespoon
lemon zest 2-3 teaspoons

In a large pot, blanch the peas in boiling salted water for 1 minute, take them out with a slotted ladle, rinse with cold water for a few seconds and drain. Use the same water, bring it to the boil and blanch the beans for 4-5 minutes or until al dente, drain and rinse with cold water. In a bowl, mix the beans and peas with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, season with salt and pepper and then arrange on plates.

For the mayonnaise, mix the garlic and lemon juice in a small bowl and set aside. Drop 2 egg yolks into a mug which should be just big enough for a stick mixer to fit in it. Pour 1/4 of the oil onto the egg yolks and start mixing with the stick mixer immediately, add more oil and the lemon garlic mixture, a little at a time, mixing constantly. When the dip is thick and creamy (after a few seconds) season with salt and whisk in the tahini and 1 1/2 teaspoons of lemon zest, season to taste. On the plates, spread a few dollops of the mayonnaise on top of the greens and sprinkle with spring onion, basil and lemon zest. Serve immediately.

Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise


Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise


Green Beans and Peas with Tahini Lemon Mayonnaise



Sweet Pear and Bitter Chicory Salad

Chicory, Pear + Walnut Salad

This was my favourite salad during my university years! When I was too busy to cook or my fridge didn’t have much to offer, this was always an option (besides spaghetti with tomato sauce).  A crunchy sweet and bitter combination which I always love but here especially together with the walnuts. In winter I make sure I have these three in stock, pear and walnuts as a quick snack and chicory is one of my quick emergency dinners. If I’m running out of time, I cut 2 chicories in half, fry them in butter, golden brown on each side and season them with salt and pepper – done.

For my salad I need 2 chicories and 1 pear, both sliced in strips, enough to feed 2-4 people. At lunch time people have different eating habits so it’s hard to estimate the exact amounts. At a dinner party this is definitely enough for a a side dish for 4. I make a light dressing with 3 tablespoons of olive oil mixed with 2 tablespoons of white Balsamico (I can’t live without this vinegar in winter!), seasoned with salt and pepper. You could also add some fresh lemon juice. Some walnuts on top and I’m back in my student years!

Chicory, Pear + Walnut Salad


Chicory, Pear + Walnut Salad


Chicory, Pear + Walnut Salad

Red Cabbage and Mango Salad

Red Cabbage + Mango Salad

When I had my tea this morning, I stared at a bright red cabbage on my kitchen table for about 5 minutes. I was lost in a daze, still overwhelmed by yesterday’s response to the eat in my kitchen feature by the ZEIT Magazin. I got so many beautiful messages, thank you all! In case you didn’t read it yet, here is the link:

So, back to the red cabbage! My spontaneous decision: I chop the cabbage thinly and mix it with mango slices – I waited patiently for it to ripen, it should be good by now. All this salad needs is a light dressing with olive oil and orange juice and some coriander leaves on top. The light spiciness of the cabbage is great together with the sweet fruitiness of the mango and orange. A vibrant quick and easy Monday lunchtime kick!

Red Cabbage + Mango Salad

 Red Cabbage and Mango Salad

For 4 people you need

red cabbage, rinsed, dried and sliced thinly, 400g / 14 ounces
mango, cut into thin slices, 1
orange juice 5 tablespoons
olive oil 3 tablespoons
salt and pepper
coriander leaves, a handful

Mix the olive oil with the orange juice. Season the dressing with salt and pepper and pour over the cabbage. Lay the mango slices and coriander leaves on top – that’s it. Tastes great, feels good, prepared in a few minutes – and it looks gorgeous!

Fennel Carpaccio with Caper and Lemon

Fennel Carpaccio with Caper and Lemon

Two days left in 2013 – an easy and comfy lunch is in order to lean and look back on the past months. I feel like a quick carpaccio with fennel, caper and lemon, fresh and light, the right foundation for an honest review of an exciting and inspiring year – and the start of eat in my kitchen!

My mother told me about this vegetarian carpaccio which she enjoyed at a restaurant in Italy, so much that it became part of her – and my – recipe collection. Sometimes she is so excited by her food discoveries that she calls me immediately after she ate to tell me about her find. She knows that I love fennel and caper –  a perfect match together with lemon and olive oil. I can get good quality fennel all year round therefore I cook with it quite often. As much as I love this carpaccio as a quick lunch because it’s so easy to prepare, it makes a beautiful, light starter as well.

As a starter for 4, cut 1 fennel bulb in very thin slices and arrange them on plates. Add 6-10 capers on each plate, mine are salted so I have to rinse them first. Drizzle some olive oil and fresh lemon juice on top and season with salt and pepper. It only takes a couple minutes.

Fennel Carpaccio with Caper and Lemon


A Sicilian Salad with Oranges, Oregano and Olive Oil

Oranges, Oregano + Olive Oil

My friends and family live all over the world. On the big festive days of the year, we spend quite a bit of time on Skype to share the special moments. We talk and laugh and – very often – show each other what we cook for our festive meals. Yesterday, my boyfriend’s mother Jenny, presented a beautiful piece of ham that she had just pulled out of her oven. It looked so tempting! She also told me about the orange tree in her garden in Malta which is sagging with oranges and held a huge box of oranges for me to see. I knew what I would have for lunch today: my Sicilian salad with oranges, oregano and very good olive oil!

I know this combination sounds a bit extraordinary. It is another one of my Sicilian discoveries which I had for breakfast at a little farm in Noto two years ago. They used the oregano which grew on their farm and it was the best oregano I ever had in my life. It was unbelievably good! I never thought there could be such big differences in the taste of oregano.

This salad makes a perfect snack after the last Christmas days of culinary richness – refreshing, light and comfortable. All you need to do is to peel two oranges (including the softer inner skin) and cut them in thick slices. Drizzle some good olive oil on top and sprinkle with dried or fresh oregano and a bit of salt.

Oranges, Oregano + Olive Oil

A Wintery Salad with Beetroot and Walnuts

Field Salad +  Beetroot

I must confess that I literally lived in my cookie boxes the past weekend but – at least for today – I will take a sweet break (as much as I love them). My body needs something light and healthy, a salad. In winter I love to get boxes of organic field salad,  its nutty taste is great to combine with roots, fruit and nuts. You just need to throw a handful of these little leaves in a bowl, add whatever you feel like and drizzle some olive oil and balsamico on top. It makes a great lunch or dinner even with some cheese and bread on the side. As this salad is so easy to prepare and looks and tastes so good, it is also a very nice starter for a wintery dinner party.

Sometimes I arrange this lettuce with mango or apple slices but my favourite combination is cooked beetroot and walnuts. I cooked a few beetroots a couple days ago and still have some left. I chop up one medium sized beet in little cubes and mix it with two handful of field salad. My dressing is simple but matches the beetroot perfectly: 3 tablespoons of olive oil mixed with 2 tablespoons of balsamico, seasoned with salt and pepper, that’s all it needs. I pour the thick dressing on top of the salad and drizzle 5 chopped walnuts on top. Today there are two of us enjoying this tasty and healthy treat!

We eat beetroot quite often, I buy 3 or 4 of them every week and cook them with 2 bay leaves in salted water for 45 minutes (more or less depending on their size). This way they keep their strong and unique taste. I love them sliced thinly as a carpaccio or cut into cubes in wintery salads.

Field Salad +  Beetroot