Tag Archives: cumin

Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Kale Salad with Toasted Seeds

Nourish Kale

In my role at the publishers DBP, I have been working on a book that has just come out – Nourish: The Cancer Care Cookbook. Written by the team at Penny Brohn Cancer Centre and nutritionist Christine Bailey, it shows you how to create delicious meals, snacks and drinks that are packed with nutrients to support your body if you have cancer.

The introduction to the book explains the role of nutrition in protecting against cancer, helping to alleviate some of the symptoms, and forming a crucial part of any cancer treatment programme. And then there are recipes for shakes, juices, smoothies and breakfasts, soups and light meals, main meals, desserts and baked treats. There are also recipes that are designed specifically to help with the common side effects of treatment. The recipes are easy and quick to prepare, and highly nutritious.

We tried this simple kale salad. I wanted to try it because I’m always looking for ways to make kale taste good. I find it unappetising and bitter, but I know that it’s supergood for you! (Kale is packed with flavonoids – antioxidants that help lower inflammation and protect against cell damage. This cruciferous super-food is also rich in glucosinolates, which can play a primary role in protection against many forms of cancer.) The combination of the tamari-toasted seeds with the avocado/lemon dressing sounded good. And it really was! I served this with steamed fish and it was a great success.  (And by the way, it’s worth making up a batch of the toasted seeds and keeping them for a snack.)

gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free

Serves 4
Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 3 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 250g/9oz kale, large stems discarded, leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic salt (optional)
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes (optional)
  • 1 ripe avocado, pitted and peeled
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp olive oil or flaxseed oil
  • 2 tsp tamari
  • 200g/7oz/1⅓ cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 handful of alfalfa sprouts

Toasted seeds and nuts:

  • 2 tbsp pine nuts
  • 6 tbsp mixed seeds, such as sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and hemp seeds
  • 2 tbsp tamari
  1. To make the toasted seeds and nuts, put them in a dry frying pan over medium heat and lightly toast for 1 minute, stirring. As they begin to colour, pour over the tamari and stir to combine. Stir for 1–2 minutes until crisp. Leave to cool.
  2. Put the kale into a large bowl and sprinkle over the garlic salt and yeast flakes, if using. Massage with your hands to allow the kale to soften. Put the avocado, lemon juice, cumin, oil and tamari into a blender or food processor and process until smooth. Mix into the kale so that it is thoroughly coated. Stir in the tomatoes and sprinkle over the alfalfa sprouts and toasted seeds and nuts, then serve. (Store in the fridge for up to 2 days.)

Nutritional Information per serving
Protein 9.8g, Carbohydrates 7.8g of which sugars 4.8g, Fat 24.3g of which saturates 3.1g, Kcals 289

Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Kale Salad with Toasted Seeds

Nourish Kale

In my role at the publishers DBP, I have been working on a book that has just come out – Nourish: The Cancer Care Cookbook. Written by the team at Penny Brohn Cancer Centre and nutritionist Christine Bailey, it shows you how to create delicious meals, snacks and drinks that are packed with nutrients to support your body if you have cancer.

The introduction to the book explains the role of nutrition in protecting against cancer, helping to alleviate some of the symptoms, and forming a crucial part of any cancer treatment programme. And then there are recipes for shakes, juices, smoothies and breakfasts, soups and light meals, main meals, desserts and baked treats. There are also recipes that are designed specifically to help with the common side effects of treatment. The recipes are easy and quick to prepare, and highly nutritious.

We tried this simple kale salad. I wanted to try it because I’m always looking for ways to make kale taste good. I find it unappetising and bitter, but I know that it’s supergood for you! (Kale is packed with flavonoids – antioxidants that help lower inflammation and protect against cell damage. This cruciferous super-food is also rich in glucosinolates, which can play a primary role in protection against many forms of cancer.) The combination of the tamari-toasted seeds with the avocado/lemon dressing sounded good. And it really was! I served this with steamed fish and it was a great success.  (And by the way, it’s worth making up a batch of the toasted seeds and keeping them for a snack.)

gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free

Serves 4
Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 3 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 250g/9oz kale, large stems discarded, leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic salt (optional)
  • 1 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes (optional)
  • 1 ripe avocado, pitted and peeled
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp olive oil or flaxseed oil
  • 2 tsp tamari
  • 200g/7oz/1⅓ cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 handful of alfalfa sprouts

Toasted seeds and nuts:

  • 2 tbsp pine nuts
  • 6 tbsp mixed seeds, such as sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and hemp seeds
  • 2 tbsp tamari
  1. To make the toasted seeds and nuts, put them in a dry frying pan over medium heat and lightly toast for 1 minute, stirring. As they begin to colour, pour over the tamari and stir to combine. Stir for 1–2 minutes until crisp. Leave to cool.
  2. Put the kale into a large bowl and sprinkle over the garlic salt and yeast flakes, if using. Massage with your hands to allow the kale to soften. Put the avocado, lemon juice, cumin, oil and tamari into a blender or food processor and process until smooth. Mix into the kale so that it is thoroughly coated. Stir in the tomatoes and sprinkle over the alfalfa sprouts and toasted seeds and nuts, then serve. (Store in the fridge for up to 2 days.)

Nutritional Information per serving
Protein 9.8g, Carbohydrates 7.8g of which sugars 4.8g, Fat 24.3g of which saturates 3.1g, Kcals 289

Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Spicy Cauliflower Fritters

Cauliflower works brilliantly with bold, spicy flavours. Its delicate taste and texture when cooked just soaks them in. And it’s a lovely firm vegetable that is substantial – making it a great addition to a gluten-free kitchen.

Here I’ve mixed up a batter, using rice flour, gram flour and cornflour, and then sparkling water as the Japanese do in their tempura recipes to make the batter light. I’ve seasoned the batter with salt and ground chilli, cumin, turmeric and coriander – making them quite fiery. But if you’d like them less full-on, just halve the quantities of those spices. And then I’ve made a coriander-yogurt to dip them into.

gluten-free, dairy-free, yeast-free, nut-free, seed-free, citrus-free

Makes 12 large or about 20 small fritters     Preparation time 10 minutes     Cooking time 10 minutes

  • 1 cauliflower
  • 100g/3½oz/heaped ½ cup rice flour
  • 50g/1¾oz/scant ½ cup gram flour
  • 100g/3½oz cornflour
  • ½ tsp crushed sea salt
  • 2 tsp ground mild chilli
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 150ml/5fl/oz fizzy water
  • 2 large handfuls chopped coriander leaves
  • at least 250ml/9fl oz/1 cup rapeseed oil or olive oil, for frying

Coriander yogurt:

  • 300ml/10½fl oz/scant 1¼ cups dairy-free soya yogurt
  • 1 large handful finely chopped coriander leaves
  • sea salt
  1. Break the cauliflower into small florets. Put into a steamer and steam over a high heat for 4–5 minutes until the thicker stalks are tender but the cauliflower still has a firm texture.
  2. Sift the flours into a large mixing bowl and stir in the salt and spices. Make a well in the centre of the flour mixture and add the garlic, egg and fizzy water. Beat slowly with a wooden spoon to draw in the flours to make a smooth batter. Stir in the steamed cauliflower and, using the spoon, mash the cauliflower up into small pieces then add the coriander and mix in well.
  3. Heat enough oil in a large frying pan to deep fry the fritters over a medium heat until hot. Spoon a couple of large spoonfuls or a few small spoonfuls, depending on the size of fritters you want, into the pan and cook for 1–2 minutes on each side or until golden. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and put on a pile of kitchen paper to remove any excess oil.
  4. Repeat with the remaining batter, keeping the cooked fritters warm. Serve hot with the Coriander Yogurt.

Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Jewelled Persian Rice

Last weekend Peter, Zoe and I went to stay with a friend (also called Peter) who lives near Saffron Walden in Essex. It was wonderfully sunny and we swam outside for the first time this year (hard to believe now, after the gales we’ve had this week…) Huge thanks, Peter, for a truly lovely weekend – full of great fun and delicious food!


We wandered around Saffron Walden itself, too – a medieval market town that was originally called Chipping Walden. Initially the town’s primary trade was in wool but in the 16th century and 17th century saffron became widely grown in the area. This precious plant was used in medicines, as a condiment, a perfume, an aphrodisiac, a yellow dye, and a (luxury) ingredient. This industry gave its name to the town and Chipping Walden became known as Saffron Walden.

When I came home I wanted to make a recipe using saffron – and found this one for Jewelled Persian Rice.

This recipe comes from the recently-published New Vegetarian Kitchen that has been named one of the top 10 vegetarian cookbooks by The Independent. Written by Nicola Graimes, an award-winning cookery writer and ex-editor of Vegetarian Living, it’s full of truly inspirational recipes that prove that there’s a lot more to vegetarian cooking than pastas and bean burgers!

It’s always great to find a new way to cook rice as it’s such an important staple on a gluten-free diet. The wonderful flavours of the saffron strands, with the cinnamon and cumin seeds, give the rice a lovely exotic flavour and the onion, courgette, dried fruits and nuts add even more delicious flavours and textures. And this method is wonderful – you get light, fluffy rice that’s absolutely not stodgy or watery – and with a slightly crunchy crust. Lovely! I couldn’t find dried barberries locally so I used dried cranberries instead.

gluten-free, dairy-free, yeast-free, egg-free, seed-free

Serves 4     Preparation time 10 minutes, plus 1 hour soaking the rice if you like     Cooking time 20 minutes

  • 250g/9oz/1¼ cups basmati rice
  • ½ tsp salt, plus extra for seasoning
  • ½ tsp saffron strands
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 courgette, diced
  • grated zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 60g/2¼oz/⅓ cup unsulphured dried apricots, chopped
  • 55g/2oz/⅓ cup blanched almonds, chopped
  • 35g/1¼oz butter
  • 3 tbsp dried barberries
  • freshly ground black pepper
  1. If time allows, soak the rice for 1 hour, then drain and rinse under cold running water. Put the rice and salt in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 4 minutes. Drain again and set aside. Clean the pan.
  2. Put the saffron and 4 tablespoons hot water in a small bowl and set aside to infuse. Meanwhile, heat half of the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium-low heat and fry the onion for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Add the courgette and cook for another 3 minutes, then stir in the orange zest, cumin seeds, cinnamon, dried apricots and almonds. Add the saffron and its soaking liquid, season with salt and pepper and mix well.
  3. Heat the butter and remaining oil in the cleaned saucepan over a medium-low heat. When melted, add half of the rice and top with half of the vegetable mixture, then layer again with the rest of the rice and then the vegetable mixture. Using the handle of a wooden spoon, poke five holes into the rice and pour 1 teaspoon of boiling water into each. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook over a low heat for 10–15 minutes until the rice is tender and there is a light golden ‘crust’ on the bottom. Sprinkle with the barberries and serve.