During rainy evenings, when cool gusts of wind leave a bit of a chill behind, it is always a delight to gorge on soothing and comforting warm salads. While it is best to avoid raw, cold salad options because of the high probability of contracting infections, warm salads become a good alternative that is nutritious and nourishing. Check out some delicious warm salad recipes that make for sumptuous evening meals.
Monsoons in the tropics mean humidity, but they also mean relief from the sweltering heat of the summer and those occasional evenings when chilly winds blow and cooling temperatures provide respite from dampness. In monsoons, avoiding raw and leafy vegetables protects gut health and prevents seasonal ailments or infections. Instead of having cold salads for dinner, warm, steamed vegetables are better options that are lighter on the stomach but just as nutritious.
Warm salads are a lovely one-dish meal that can be accompanied by a slice of multigrain toast or some lightly toasted sourdough for a feeling of sheer comfort and cosiness on a rainy evening. Including pumpkins, sprouts, tossed paneer, and roasted vegetables in the salad gives it a more soothing and soft texture. Read on for some varieties of salads that are sumptuous, comforting, and warm recipes perfect for rainy days:
Mixed Sprout Salad
This sprout salad made from moong, matki, dried green peas, chickpeas, black-eyed peas, and more is basically a mixture of all the sprouts available at home, boiled until they are semi-cooked. Add chopped onions, capsicum, and corn along with a sprinkle of salt, pepper, red chilli powder, and some chaat masala to pack this nutritious mixture with lots of flavours. Try sprouting these beans at home, following the simple technique of soaking them overnight. Avoid buying sprouts in the monsoon, as prolonged exposure to damp weather in the market might spoil them or lead to fungal growth.
Beetroot, Carrot, and Ricotta Salad
This simple salad made from three readily available ingredients involves baking carrots and ricotta in the oven with a salad dressing made of orange zest, honey, and olive oil. Steam the beetroot and dice it before mixing it with the carrots and cheese. Adding roasted or grilled chicken to the recipe, slightly flavoured with paprika, can also be a healthy option rich in protein.
Avocado And Roasted Potato Salad
Avocados and potatoes are a delightfully healthy combination that blends the nutritious elements of avocado with the comfort of a nicely roasted potato. Season this simply with some olive oil, sea salt, mustard sauce, and mayonnaise for a great flavour. If the salad feels too soft, add some baby lettuce to the mix for a crunchier texture.
Thai Chicken Noodle Salad
Nutritious and delicious, this salad recipe is perfect for a family dinner because it is quickly favoured by kids and adults alike. Add vermicelli or any other boiled noodles of your choice to a bowl along with sliced carrots, beans, some red and yellow bell peppers, and chicken breasts cooked in a frying pan. For the dressing, use good-quality soy and fish sauce, along with a drizzle of sweet chilli and crushed ginger. Sprinkle a bit of lime juice for that added zing.
Roasted Cauliflower Salad
A sumptuous winter salad made with cauliflower, crumbled feta, and orange zest, this dish is as healthy as it is crispy and delicious. Bake the cauliflower in the oven or toss it lightly in a wok to give it a nice golden brown hue before adding paprika, garlic, olive oil, and lemon juice. For a vegan alternative, do away with the feta and enjoy the cruciferous goodness of the cauliflower mixed with fresh mint leaves and chopped onions.
Grilled Mushrooms and Carrot Salad
Easy to make and filled with the sweetness of carrots and the earthiness of mushrooms, this salad is a wonderfully warm treat on chilly evenings. Use different varieties of mushrooms for an added layer of flavour, and season the carrots with toasted sesame seeds and a drizzle of honey before baking or roasting them. For the dressing, a simple mix of soy sauce and vinegar is a great option, while pea puree or mustard are also classic choices.