Elixir of Life’ Salad
We don’t always have complete control of how our bodies react to hereditary factors, environmental factors, and the social and emotional behaviors of others, but we can certainly choose what we do and what we don’t eat.
Food gives us the energy we need on a daily basis, so we consume it regularly through out the day – for some three times a day, others five or six times a day. However, food can also have major affects on our health and our state of mind. Even the most natural foods, prepared the wrong way can be harmful or cause us to react oddly. Some foods activate our metabolism, some foods slow us down, some nourish our kidneys, others our heart or liver. So when I come up with a new recipe I usually try and add as many ingredients that are closest to their natural form and that are rich in vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and antioxidants and ultimately have a positive impact on our bodies.
My “Elixir for Life” salad is no exception and has become a highly requested meal with friends and family. My family – in particular my husband – who previously wouldn’t have imagined passing tofu or buckwheat through his lips, has fallen in love with it and asks for it on a regular basis. I thought the name of this salad was appropriate as it defines a “substance that can indefinitely prolong life”, and this really is pure medicine in a bowl with every single ingredient listed being beneficial. To name a few:
- Arame is used to treat thyroid imbalances due to its content of iodine. It also promotes hair growth, healthy teeth, bones and glowing skin.
- Buckwheat contains a bioflavonoid rutin which is wonderful for treating heart conditions, poor circulation, high blood pressure by strengthening capillaries and blood vessels. It is also high in magnesium and antioxidants. Insects actually don’t find it appealing so it is grown without the use of chemicals. Unlike it’s name suggests, Buckwheat has no wheat in it and it is not a grain either, it is actually a fruit seed that is related to rhubarb.
- Fennel can help to moderate estrogen, relieve flatulence, help with weight loss and is calming. It is high in Vitamin C and fiber.
- Flaxseed oil is our richest source of omega 3 fatty acids – almost twice as much as fish oil. It is helpful for the treatment of asthma, arthritis, diabetes, allergies, water retention, skin conditions, vitality and stress.
- Kale is a member of the cabbage family and contains extremely high amount of chlorophyll, iron, calcium and Vitamin A. It is great for the stomach and full of nutrients.
- Nori has the highest protein content of sea plants and is the easiest to digest. Nori helps to clean the blood, stimulate digestion, improve appetite and iron levels.
- Sesame seeds are a fabulous source of calcium. Great help for constipation, liver and kidneys.
- Tofu is low in calories and high in nutrients and is great for treating stomach upsets, infections, hangovers and promotes long life and good health.
Somehow adding everything together creates this beautiful, creamy, crunchy, flavorsome, delicious salad. In fact, after countless times of preparing this salad – this is the very first time I have put the recipe into words to share with you all. I hope you enjoy too!
- 1 pack of 100% buckwheat noodles (found at your nearest health food store)
- 1 punnet of fresh shitake mushrooms, finely sliced
- tablespoon of olive oil
- tablespoon of organic tamari
- 2 large handful salad greens; Dandelion greens, Arugula, Baby Spinach, Watercress and Kale leaves
- 1 packet of snow pea sprouts, ends sliced off
- 1 large organic carrot, julienned
- 1 handful of snow peas, endless and diagonally sliced
- 1 small packet of organic firm high protein tofu, julienned
- 1 small fennel, julienned
- ½ cup of dried arame, soaked
- 1 bunch of asparagus, sliced and blanched
- 1 ripe avocado
- toasted pinenuts
- toasted sesame seeds
- 2 sheets of nori seaweed, cut into strands
- teaspoon of raw sugar (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of sesame oil
- 1 tablespoon organic tamari
- ½ to 1 tablespoon of flaxseed oil
- 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
This makes a large salad bowl full. I tend to keep extra undressed as it keeps for a few days.
- I start by boiling a large saucepan and cooking buckwheat noodles. Follow packet instructions carefully. Once you bring to the boil pour cold water in and bring to boil again. I usually repeat this 3-4 times until buckwheat is cooked. Because the noodles are made with 100% buckwheat flour, this cooking method prevents the consistency of noodles from dissolving into boiling water. When cooked, strain and rinse noodles immediately with cold water. Set aside to cool.
- Heat a non-stick pan, add olive oil and sliced shitake mushrooms. Cook until mushrooms shrink and become golden, add tamari then set aside in the fridge to cool.
- Wash and prepare all veggies and if you own a julienne, slide tofu through it to make long thin strands.
- Mix all prepared vegetables into large salad bowl with noodles, tofu and shitake mushrooms. Place back into fridge to chill.
- Toast pine nuts and sesame seeds and cut avocado and nori sheets into small squares.
- Whisk all dressing ingredients together to get a combined thick consistency.
- Mix everything together gently with large salad servers. Slowly add dressing spoon by spoonful until covered. Be sure not to over dress. Serve.
Enjoy! You will soon realise the power this salad can bring you!
For more healthy recipes from Alison visit her food blog at: An Apple A Day
Elixir of Life’ Salad
Some foods activate our metabolism, some foods slow us down, some nourish our kidneys, others our heart or liver. So when I come up with a new recipe I usually try and add as many ingredients that are closest to their natural form and that are rich in vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and antioxidants and ultimately have a positive impact on our bodies.