Thursday, 7 January 2016

Tasty Buckwheat and Silverbeet Salad

We've been enjoying a few days at the farm. The weather has been nice and there's been time to poke around the garden for things to cook with. Given the slower start to the growing season up in the high country, and being the resourceful soul I like to think I am, I've been plucking small leaves from the gone-to-seed silverbeet and using them for salads. Silverbeet is such an underrated vege. I think, as small children, many of us have been a bit put off silverbeet by being fed too many well overcooked examples at our grandmother's table: something we ate out of duty, before woofing down the roast meat and looking forward to pudding. Not only is it super tasty served raw, but it grows very easily in the garden throughout the year; it's hardy enough to withstand the hardest frost, and quickly perks up when the weather warms up. 

The other interesting component of this salad is the buckwheat. Buckwheat is actually no relation of wheat. It belongs to the rhubarb family and unlike wheat, contain no gluten at all. It's starchy and nutty, quick to cook, and makes a great carbohydrate addition to any salad. I've again taken advantage of all the parsley in the garden and dressed the salad with my favourite Green Dressing.  If you want to make the dressing gluten free, use wine vinegar instead of malt.  

Buckwheat and Silverbeet Salad with Green Dressing

1 cup uncooked buckwheat
3 to 4 good handfuls of small silverbeet leaves
1 red capsicum
2 spring onions
1 recipe of Green Dressing with a half teaspoon of ground cumin added.

Rinse the buckwheat in plenty of cold water. Place it and 3 cups of water into a large pot and bring to the boil. 

Turn down and cook, covered for 15 to 20 minutes. Try a couple of grains, they should be soft in the middle, but not mushy. 

Drain the buckwheat, then set aside to cool while you prepare the remaining ingredients. 

Thoroughly wash and dry the silverbeet. 

Roll it together and slice thinly. 

Slice the capsicum into small strips, then into small dice. 

Finely slice the spring onions. 

Prepare the dressing - you wont need to whole amount - the unused portion will keep for at least a week in the fridge. 

Fluff the buckwheat with a fork, then place all the ingredients into a bowl and combine with as much dressing as you might like. The buckwheat soaks up quite a lot of dressing, so don't be shy about adding more if required. 

Happy, and healthy cooking everyone xx

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