Zesty Quinoa and Sweet Potato Salad – a Higgidy Picnic

I have many fond memories of long afternoons spent in our local park, picnic-ing under the summer skies. My parents had a good group of friends, all with little ones of similar ages, and we would all congregate on the grass for big picnics. We would run around, learn to ride our bikes, or spend hours testing out our new roller skates, and occasionally run back to the group to grab a snack and re-fuel. We must have clocked up a fair few hours in that lovely park. Whenever I go there now, those memories all come flooding back. I am grateful for a happy upbringing, with so much time spent outdoors.

We haven’t really had the right weather for picnics this year, and the British nation is patiently waiting some serious sunshine (rumour has it some heat is on its way this week). I decided that I wasn’t going to let the weather stop us from eating alfresco this weekend, so we opted for a garden picnic. Our new kitchen leads directly out into the back garden, so it’s handy for running back inside if it does start to rain, which coincidentally, it did! Picnic foods aren’t just great for alfresco dining, I love simple, quick bites that you can throw together for a quick, fuss free dinner in the week.

Whilst I try to make wholesome, homemade recipes most days, sometimes you just need something you can grab and go – right? That’s why I love Higgidy’s range of pies and quiches. Higgidy’s range of products offer a large range of delicious flavour combinations, and make a great picnic addition. Each product is handmade (no robots here) with love. I’m taking part in their #HiggidyPicnic and bringing this zesty quinoa and sweet potato salad along with me! Quinoa is great (incase you didn’t already know!) as it contains iron, magnesium, B vitamins, calcium, and is one of only a few plant-based foods that is a complete protein. It’s also vegan and gluten-free, yay!

Zesty Quinoa and Sweet Potato Salad // roughmeasures.com

Zesty Quinoa and Sweet Potato Salad // roughmeasures.com

Zesty Quinoa and Sweet Potato Salad // roughmeasures.com

 

Zesty Quinoa and Sweet Potato Salad // roughmeasures.com

Zesty Quinoa and Sweet Potato Salad and a Higgidy Picnic
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
A zesty, citrusy salad with quinoa and sweet potato. This salad is simple and makes a batch. The dressing is my go-to dressing at the minute. Perfect flavours for summer.
Rough Measures:
Cuisine: Picnic
Ingredients
  • 1 sweet potato (scrubbed)
  • ½ aubergine
  • 1 cup / 190g quinoa (I used a mix of red and white)
  • S+P
  • Lemon thyme (optional)
  • DRESSING
  • ½ cup/120ml extra virgin olive oil
  • Zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • Handful fresh oregano
  • Olive Oil - for roasting
Method
  1. Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 5 / 190 C
  2. Chop the sweet potato and aubergine, place on a lined baking tray, scatter with S+P, lemon thyme (if using) and coconut oil. Place in the oven and roast for 40 minutes, or until the veg is soft.
  3. Rinse your quinoa in a sieve under some cold water. Place in a saucepan with 2 cups water. Put on a hob and bring to the boil. Once boiling, turn down to a simmer and let it cook for 15 mins (you want to retain a little bite in the quinoa)
  4. While that's cooking, make your dressing.
  5. Add all the dressing ingredients to a blender (or into a jug and use a stick blender) and blitz for 10 seconds, taste and check for seasoning.
  6. Once the quinoa has cooked, drain any excess liquid, then add the quinoa to a large mixing bowl.
  7. Add in the roasted veg, and a good glug of your dressing.
  8. Stir it well so the quinoa can absorb the dressing.
  9. Enjoy al fresco.
 

Higgidyrolls

See who else is joining the #higgidypicnic ;

Simple Orange Ginger Carrot Salad – Tin and Thyme

No Mayo Apple Slaw – Celery and Cupcakes

Bananatella Muffins – Munchies and Munchkins

Pack Up Picnic – Recipes and Reviews

 

This recipe is sponsored by Higgidy. All opinions are my own, stay individual friends.

Asian Kale Salad with Ginger Dressing

I have had a fantastic, yet mad, couple of weeks. The first of which saw my mum and I travelling up to London to attend the Soil Association BOOM Awards, where I (and this dear blog of mine) were shortlisted for the Best Food Blog award. I was in total shock when I found out I had made it into the top ten, with 9 other fantastic foodies. It was a fantastic event, taking place in Borough Market and a huge amount of effort had gone into making the place a foodies dream. When we arrived we found out that I was in fact down to the final 3, which was incredible! I was so honoured that my little blog had made it to the awards with so many other amazing organic brands. Huge congratulations go out to everyone nominated, and of course to all the winners!

This weekend saw me heading up to Birmingham for the FLEA Enterprises #BlogCamp2016. Blog Camp is like a conference / learning day for food / parent / interiors and travel bloggers. There were about 200 of us there, including around 15 of my food blogger friends. I have met so many wonderful people because of Rough Measures, and it was fab to catch up with some of them. The day was filled with talks on food styling, Pinterest tips, stories from some top bloggers, writing workshops and more. I have come away with a head full of information!

Asian Kale Salad // roughmeasures.comAsian Kale Salad // roughmeasures.com

Last week saw some sunshine, and I got all excited and wanted to make a salad with flavours that take me back to my time spent travelling Asia. Something like this Asian kale salad, with my favourite ginger dressing. The strong tastes of ginger and umami flavours make my mouth and belly happy. The crunch of the massaged kale and carrot keep the textures strong here. I haven’t enjoyed a salad this much since this one I made last year! Enjoy pals, and stay dry (apparently the British summer lasted all of 3 days!)

Asian Kale Salad // roughmeasures.com

Asian Kale Salad // roughmeasures.comAsian Kale Salad // roughmeasures.com

 

Asian Kale Salad with Ginger Dressing
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
A crunchy, citrus infused salad which brings me back fond memories of my travels.
Rough Measures:
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Asian
Ingredients
  • Big bunch of kale - washed, de-stemmed and leaves loosely shredded
  • ¼ red cabbage - shredded
  • 1 carrot - peeled into thin strips
  • 2 spring onions - finely chopped
  • Zest 1 lime
  • Handful peanuts
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • FOR THE DRESSING
  • A thumb sized piece of ginger - peeled and grated
  • 2 garlic cloves - finely chopped
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup tamari (sub for soy sauce if you don't have tamari)
  • ¼ cup rice wine vinegar
  • Juice 1 lime
  • 4 tablespoons cold water
Method
  1. Get all your ingredients ready.
  2. Start with the dressing; in a large bowl, add the grated ginger and garlic.
  3. Add in the rest of the dressing ingredients, give it a really good whisk. Pour the dressing into a sealable jar, leaving around 50ml left in the bowl.
  4. Add your shredded kale into the bowl. Using your fingers, massage the kale into the dressing. Do this for a couple of minutes until all the kale has been coated.
  5. Throw the cabbage, carrot and spring onions into the bowl, and mix with your hands.
  6. Toss through the peanuts and sesame seeds, serve into a large salad bowl.
  7. Add more dressing if you wish!
Notes
The measurements for the dressing should make around 500ml - it will last for a few weeks in a sealed jar in the fridge. Shake well before use.
 

Want to Pin this recipe for later? Use the image below – you can follow me on Pinterest too!

Asian Kale Salad // roughmeasures.com
Some other Asian inspired salads that I’m loving are;

Warm Japanese Black Noodle Salad from Natural Kitchen Adventures

Asian Chopped Kale Salad from Cookie and Kate

Healthy Kale + Quinoa Salad with Ginger-Curry Vinaigrette from The Clever Carrot

Carrot and Moong Bean Salad from Botanical Kitchen

Asian Beetroot Salad from Bunny Kitchen

Matcha and Lime Cheesecake

Growing up, meal times were quite the event in our house. We always sat around the table to eat, (unless Mum was away and then Dad would let us have fish and chips in front of the TV) the 6 of us, congregating and discussing our days. Someone would be chief table-setter, something my oldest brother managed to get out of, on the excuse that he didn’t like the noise of the cutlery clanging together! Someone else would get the drinks, another would help hold the plates while Mum served up the food. Sometimes there would be tantrums, storming off upstairs, but mostly it was good old-fashioned chit-chat. Proper family dinner times. I am grateful to of had those times, and ‘proper’ mealtimes are still important to me now. To know you have that half an hour where you can focus on each other, check in and catch up. To be fully focussed on listening to voices, and tasting the food on your plate. It is something that seems to be a luxury that many of us don’t take the time to do anymore.

Back to those mealtimes, after the feast, there would always be pudding. Oh, the puddings. Crumbles, chocolate sponges, ginger orange cream pies, and cheesecakes, lots of cheesecakes. The zestiest lemon cheesecake my mouth ever did taste. Not baked, just chilled and rich, creamy and fruity. My sister has carried on the cheesecake repertoire and is doing my Mum proud. Where there is a Davy meal, there will most likely be cheesecake.

Lime Matcha Cheesecake

This creation is an ode to those mealtimes. The Matcha in this gives it an awesome green colour, the lime a refreshing citrus kick, and the coconut adds a smooth creamy texture.

This recipe does require a bit of planning the day before, read over it and get everything soaking / chilling the night before. Then the next day will be easy! Don’t be put off by the list of ingredients either, it’s worth it.

Matcha and Lime Cheesecake (v) (gf)

Ingredients:

For the base:
100g cashews
100g walnuts
1 tbsp coconut oil (melted)
150g pitted dates (soaked for 10 mins in boiling water)
1 tsp raw cacao powder
1 tsp date syrup

For the filling:
150g cashews (soaked for at least 2 hours – best to soak the night before)
100g brazil nuts (soaked with cashews)
Zest and juice from 2 limes
1 tin coconut milk (refrigerated overnight)
1 tsp Matcha powder (I used Teapigs)
1 tsp arrowroot powder (I tried this recipe with, and without arrowroot. It works without, but doesn’t set so well. Don’t panic if you don’t have it, just leave it longer to chill before eating)
Pinch salt

METHOD

For the base, blitz your cashews and walnuts in a food processor with the cacao powder, until crumbly.

Add the rest of the base ingredients, and pulse until mix starts to stick together. It should stick together easily when pressed.

Line a round springform tin with greaseproof paper, push the base mix evenly into the bottom. Use a spatula / knife to make sure its quite compact.

Rinse your soaked nuts well under cold water.

Add all your filling ingredients to a high-speed blender, blend for a few minutes. You want the mix to be very smooth with no bits of nuts.

Pour mix into your tin, covering the base.

Chill for a minimum of 4 hours, the longer the better. I put mine in the freezer for 3 hours and it was just about set.

Lime Matcha Cheesecake

Lime Matcha Cheesecake

Lime Matcha Cheesecake

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Teapigs kindly sent me some Matcha to try. I was not paid for this post and my opinions are my own. I genuinely like Matcha and think it’s a great ingredient.