An Autumnal Salad

by Anna Hewitt

We love salads in this house. I’m not just talking a few leaves on a plate, I like a salad that makes a whole meal. Something with substance, texture and flavour. To start with, I always had to separate out the different components for the children. But gradually over time I have been able to mix parts together so that now we can just put one big dish in the middle of the table. In saying that, if I know there are a few items that are not favourites (a polite way of saying supposedly inedible for a four year old), I still serve a ‘deconstructed salad’ and find the meal much more successful.

Here’s a wild rice and mushroom salad that tasted even better when topped with halloumi. It’s lovely for this time of year when mushrooms, radicchio and walnuts are in season. I haven’t given measurements on any kind of precise instructions as it’s more of an idea for you to try next time you feel like a fresh yet hearty meal.

Wild Rice and Mushroom Salad
Wild rice
Black Olives
A mixture of nuts and seeds
Lemon juice and olive oil

Simply cook the wild rice according to the packet instructions, fry the mushrooms in plenty of olive oil and salt, and once they have cooled slightly (the radicchio can discolour if it comes into contact with something too hot) mix together with the rocket, radicchio, radishes and olives. To add a nice crunch, I fried some pine nuts, almonds, walnuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds to toss on top- texture is everything. Dress with some olive oil and lemon juice and add some fried halloumi if you would like to turn it into a main meal. I served this salad with some freshly baked sourdough (thanks Ollie) and hummus. Delicious.