I have met many people who think that having a salad is a boring option but I would never let that be the case! I think the key (as I do with most meals) is to add as much as you can. This not only pleases the eye, giving many varieties of colour but also then provides many flavours and textures.
Where I used to use lettuce I have now switched to spinach due to its high levels of iron, particularly important to women. For the best intake of iron, you must combine it with vitamin C which is why it’s important to include peppers. My favourite are the yellow and orange but each to their own. I would say cucumber, tomatoes and spring onions are the other essentials, then from there I like to add a variety of other ingredients.
A boiled egg is a great addition because as well as being so tasty, it is packed with protein and will help you feel fuller for longer. After a workout, I always try to include eggs. Avocado will do a great job at providing your essential fatty acids. This is a frequent ingredient on the menus in South Africa where they grow so well, yet it is also so easy to get your hands on avacados in food stores in England, they may just need to be left for a couple of days to ripen up.
Though pine nuts are expensive, they can last a long time as you only need to add a sprinkle to a salad and they add such nourishment. They are an excellent source of fibre as well as vitamins E, K, and niacin and they too contain protein. They act as an antioxidant and they are a brilliant source of magnesium and potassium which is important for maintaining a healthy heart. So basically, eat your nuts!
Other tasty add ons for me would include a few sun-dried tomatoes, some tinned sweetcorn and also beetroot, which is currently in season. Others may like to add olives and maybe some feta. The options are endless and no one could call this a boring plate!
After an essential doss of black pepper, the last decision goes to the dressing. Depending on what I have put in my salad I can vary between hummus (preferably moroccan topped), light mayonnaise or a light french dressing. Once again, the options go on and on…