Sunday, January 1, 2012


It is now the new year and I am still without an oven. I had big plans to make all sorts of nice food for my friends and family but now I am at a loss. There is no range either so I am left with very little choice - I can make salads, sandwiches, unbaked slices and baked potatoes (in the microwave). It leaves me just not much wanting to bother anymore! However, yesterday I got over my apathy long enough to prepare a salad, the recipe for which I got from a family friend. It's very simple and very delicous and makes use of one of my very favourite vegetables - broccoli! A great source of iron, vitamin C and loads of other good stuff, everybody should eat far more of it and this salad is so yummy that even fussy, non-vegetable eaters will surely enjoy it. The pepper and red onion add a bit more colour and lots of antioxidants, while the cashew nuts provide a bit of protein and the good sort of fat.

Broccoli Salad

2 or 3 heads of broccoli
1 red capsicum
1 red onion (optional if you don't like raw onion)
1 cup unsalted cashew nuts
1/8 to 1/4 cup white vinegar, depending on how tart you like it
1/4 cup caster sugar
1 cup ranch dressing (here in NZ I used ETA lite & free ranch dressing)

Wash the broccoli and cut into small florets. Chop the capsicum and onion into small pieces and throw all the vegetables into a large salad bowl, along with the cashew nuts.

In a small bowl or jug combine the vinegar, sugar and ranch dressing. Pour this over the salad and toss the ingredients together until everything is combined. Taste it to make sure that the dressing is to your liking and then you are ready to serve your very colourful, nutritional salad!

Just to finish, I must say that I really can't figure out the correct spelling of brocolli and the word is starting to look very strange because I have been staring at it for far too long. Maybe both broccoli and brocolli are correct? Maybe it's one of those UK versus US spelling things? The internet tells me that broccoli is correct, but then there is also plenty of proper hits for brocolli. I like the spelling with two l's, it looks much better to me. But I think it is not right, it is not in the Oxford dictionary for one thing. So all along I have been mistaken about this vegetable and now I must become accustomed to spelling it a new way!

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