When it’s cold outside, eating a warm meal provides a sense of comfort and satiety, which might not always need to be high on calories and low on the health meter. Enter warm salads – a delicious and balanced way to enjoy all kinds of nutritional components in your meals without compromising on taste.
While the idea of a salad has always been a case of raw greens and vegetables that one needs to chomp away for good health, warm salads – a concept that utilises cooked vegetables or protein as the key ingredient around which other elements are fitted, is a great way to enjoy feel-good winter meals. Although nothing quite beats the joy of a sizzling mac and cheese to sink their fork into on a chilly evening, a sustainable diet requires a little more effort than just carbohydrates and fat. Here are six delicious salads to enjoy when you need something comforting and nourishing.
Roasted Root Vegetable Salad
A quick sheet pan recipe to use all of the winter root vegetables like turnips, radish, sweet potatoes in a deliciously smoky, baked avatar – this roasted veggie salad for lunch can be a treat to look forward to. Add some pickled onions, feta cheese, baby spinach or arugula to the warm vegetables and enjoy for a light but filling meal on a busy weekday.
Asian Mushroom Salad
Image Credits: I Heart Umami
The sharp but refreshing Asian flavours, combined with stir fried mushrooms in a spicy-zesty chilli citrus dressing come together in this delicious salad that you can enjoy over rice. Use a variety of mushrooms between button, oyster, portobello and shimeji and top everything off with a fried egg. What’s also interesting is that this salad is a great accompaniment to your fried eggs and toast, for breakfast!
Herby Jau (Barley) Salad
Although barley is mostly consumed during the summers in India, enjoy the pseudo grain in a delightful salad form by steaming some barley and tossing it in a herb-rich dressing made with mint, basil and finely chopped coriander. Add any vegetables and protein of your choice and refrigerate some for later.
Cauliflower-Winter Greens Salad
Image Credits: Taste
Roast some cauliflower tossed in spices and seasoning for the staunchest of haters and they are sure to convert into fans of the vegetable! Use a combination of grilled mustard greens and radish greens with roasted cauliflower to celebrate seasonal and indigenous ingredients in a salad form. Drizzle with some lemon juice, olive oil and balsamic vinegar and let the natural flavours of the vegtables shine.
Orange Beetroot Salad
Sweet roasted beetroot with juicy, citrusy oranges come together in the perfect winter medley – ideal as an accompaniment to a meal. Slice the roasted beetroot as thinly as possible and segment the fresh orange on top for a vibrantly colourful salad you’d be happy to eat everyday. Crumble some feta cheese on top and add a few dollops of sour cream for a contrast in savoury-sweet-zesty flavours.
Winter Cobb Salad
Image Credits: Valerie's Kitchen
This seasonal twist on a traditional cobb salad swaps the potatoes with winter root vegetables like turnips, radish, purple yams or beetroot, and the lettuce for delicious winter greens like spinach, bathua or mustard greens. Add in the classic elements of crispy bacon, eggs and chicken to bulk it up and make a delicious sharing meal for two. This cobb salad could also make for a memorable small plate for a dinner party you’re hosting for friends.