Too hot salad
I wanted to share a recipe for a something I've been eating a lot in recent weeks. I make this when it feels too hot to eat or I am in need of something a bit refreshing. I first made it on a weighty, humid summer’s day, one of those hot city days when the air doesn’t move and all you can think about is swimming pools and ice lollies.
Now every time I make this I start singing Kool and the Gang. The key here is to get everything nice and cold. Search out raw red-skinned peanuts if you can. In the summer I soak a few handfuls in cold water overnight and keep them cool in the fridge for snacking. They are also great in stir-fries and on top of morning fruit. They are fresh and juicy and completely different to a roasted peanut. You can easily find them in health food stores or Indian supermarkets.
For a heartier meal, serve this with cooked and cooled brown basmati rice or some thin rice vermicelli noodles.
- 20 mins
- 50g raw peanuts
- 2 carrots
- 200g watermelon
- a handful of cherry tomatoes
- 1 cucumber
- 1 little gem or 1 cos lettuce, or 1⁄2 an iceberg
- a bunch of fresh coriander
For the dressing
- 1⁄2 a red chilli
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
- 2 limes
- a little runny honey or agave syrup
Get all your ingredients and equipment together. Soak the peanuts in iced water and put them into the fridge while you get on with everything else.
Peel the carrots, then use a speed-peeler to peel them into long strips and place them in a bowl with some iced water. Cut the watermelon into bite-size pieces, removing any very seedy bits and the outer skin.
Halve the cherry tomatoes. Pop both into a serving bowl and put into the fridge.
Use the speed-peeler to peel the cucumber into long strips too, stopping when you get to the watery seeded bit, and add to the serving bowl of watermelon and tomatoes in the fridge. Shred the lettuce and pick the coriander leaves from the stalks and add those to the serving bowl in the fridge too.
Chop the red chilli for the dressing and put into a small bowl with the soy, the juice of both limes and a small squeeze of honey. Taste and adjust, adding more lime, honey or agave syrup and soy if needed until you have a nice balance of heat, acidity and sweetness.
Take the serving bowl and the peanuts out of the fridge. Drain the peanuts and carrots well, add to the bowl and pour over the dressing. Toss through the lettuce and scatter over the coriander. Eat in a breezy spot, while thinking of dipping your feet in the pool.
- Store undressed salad in an airtight containers for up to 2 days in the fridge.
- Cover the dressing and store in fridge for up to 5 days.