Fresh salad recipe ideas for festive feasting
Beautiful summer salads are a staple for warm Australian Christmas days.
They are a much-needed fresh, light, tasty and textural accompaniment beside traditional turkey, ham and seafood Christmas celebration staples.
Rather than making the same old garden and pasta salads on repeat, why not bring some exciting flair and flavour to your Christmas dinner table.
With colourful and unique fruity, nutty, grain and citrusy combinations, these ten Christmas salad ideas will be a sure-fire way to impress your family and friends this festive season.
Cauliflower quinoa salad with figs
Chef Nicky Reimer from Union Dining shares the five easy steps to prepare this cauli and quinoa treat. A salad with roasted cauliflower, two types of quinoa, lemon juice, white wine vinegar, garlic cumin seeds, extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), chickpeas, spring onion, mint, parsley and sumac, this salad is flavour-packed. Forget the figgy pudding, for an attractive Christmassy touch top this salad with gorgeous figs cut into quarters.
Haricot beans, slow roasted tomatoes and buffalo mozzarella salad
Cook Julia Busuttil Nishimura has reimagined the classic tomato, basil and mozzarella salad, in a great festive red and green combo. A wonderfully light and sustaining salad including haricot beans, buffalo mozzarella, raw almonds, tomatoes (slow roasted to bring out their natural sweetness). To finish off add whatever soft herbs you have on hand (think: mint, thyme, sage or bay leaves).
Baby beet and citrus salad with shaw river buffalo mozzarella
Chef Mary Clarke has created the ultimate crisp citrus lover’s Chrissy salad. The eye-catching recipe features a tempting combination of mandarin, grapefruit, orange, mandarin olive oil, rainbow beets, radicchio, frisee lettuce, shallots and buffalo mozzarella.
Roast pumpkin, olives, radicchio, quinoa and green lentils
An ideal dish for summer entertaining, chef Nicky Reimer describes this crisp salad as ‘a big generous salad perfect for friend or family gatherings’. A mouthwatering mix of caramelised roast pumpkin, green lentils, red quinoa and radicchio pieces. Complete the salad with red wine vinegar dressing, chopped parsley, deseeded mixed olives and crumbled ricotta pieces.
Freekeh salad with smoky eggplant yoghurt
Julia Busuttil Nishimura shares her method to make a delightfully silky and smoky salad base of eggplant yoghurt. Then top the yoghurt with freekeh, golden raisins, coriander, parsley, mint, pistachios, sumac, cumin seeds, sesame seeds and shallot. Julia says, ‘if pomegranates are in season, scatter over the jewel-like seeds, otherwise, barberries are a great choice, adding a little extra sweet and sour note to the salad’.
Mount Zero Kabuli chickpea and hardy mammoth green olive salad
We like this salad for Christmas time because it is a fantastic batch salad you can prepare the day before and have in your fridge ready to go. All you need is chickpeas, cherry tomatoes, coriander, zucchini, paprika, coriander powder, cumin, oregano, mammoth olives, and red wine vinegar and olive oil for the dressing.
Quinoa, grape, radicchio, almond and pecorino salad
Chef Nicky Riemer shares her secrets to cooking tasty quinoa, grape, radicchio, almond and pecorino salad. Nicky says ‘a great salad that reminds me of Sicily, and it goes with everything...Pecorino is a beautifully salty hard cheese made with sheep milk and can be bought from most good delis at any market. You can also use parmesan or even substitute with a hard goat cheese’.
Roast pumpkin and freekeh salad with Pedro Ximenez soaked currants
Michael Smith’s roast pumpkin and freekeh salad will get your Christmas party started with the inclusion of boozy Pedro Ximenez (a sherry) soaked currants. The salad combines roast pumpkin, freekeh, currants and a red wine vinaigrette. Use soft herbs (like dill, mint or parsley), thick greek yoghurt and a dusting of sumac to garnish.
An ideal light meal or side dish for a hot summer evening, this simple and satisfying recipe mixes tomatoes, ciabatta bread, Picual EVOO, fresh basil and yummy mustard and red wine vinegar dressing. Enjoy this refreshing salad straight away, but we highly recommend letting everything sit for 20 minutes so that all of the delicious juices and flavours can really get to know each other.
Mixed grain, pickled fennel, pomegranate, sumac and labne salad
A pretty, inventive and ‘bloody delicious’ grain salad by chef Paul Baker. All you need is farro, freekeh, pearled barley, fresh parsley, pomegranate seeds, barberries, sumac, labne and pickled fennel. And presto, Christmas lunch is served!
Want more recipe ideas for summer entertaining? Browse the latest Mount Zero recipes for loads of scrumptious tapas, entree, main and dessert inspiration to try at home.