Lettuce Lunch

Month: September 2016

Lunchbox: Crispy Cauliflower Tacos

lunhcbox-4

Cauliflower tacos… what a world! Hot on the heels of our Moroccan quinoa box I figured we would try Mexico next. And when I think Mexican food, I think tacos! When it comes to making vegetarian versions of typically meaty dishes, there’s always a couple of good options. Marinated tofu works, as do simply using some meat alternatives, but I think our absolute favourite is the tried and tested method of frying vegetables until crunchy and delicious – we opted for cauliflower here to do the honours, and didn’t regret it for a second. Caulies are great for this because they’re pretty forgiving in regards to time spent cooking; definitely important when that crispy coating is browning up and you don’t really want to worry about if what’s inside is done or not!

If you’re looking to batter the cauliflower yourself, it’s so, so easy, and always worth the effort. Whisk an egg, or mix up some egg substitute and dip the cauliflower in this briefly. While it’s wet, dredge it through some flour mixed with panko bread crumbs (panko optional – super crispy mode). After that it’s all pretty straightforward, into the oil it goes! Remove from heat when browned, and you’re good to go.

Of course, every great taco needs a creamy element and some heat – here we have a little dab of greek yoghurt, some cracked pepper cheddar and a bit of chilli to round out the flavour profile. Pair it with a little taco sauce, a splash of lime juice, and a green salad and that’s that – crispy cauliflower tacos 🙂

 

  • Cauliflower, chilli, cracked pepper cheddar, coriander, taco sauce, soft taco, lime, mixed leaves
  • Kidney beans, tomato, spring onion, sesame seeds
  • Oranges

Lunchbox: Quinoa roast vegetable salad

Lunchbox 3

Here’s the thing about roasted vegetables – you just can’t go wrong with them. If these crunchy little gems were sitting on a fresh salad, you would have a hit. If they were over brown rice and steamed greens, you guessed it, hit. If they were in a soup… wait… no, don’t do that. Everything else – perfect. With that in mind, I thought some quinoa and goat’s cheese would be a great little combination. Coriander, charred capsicum and red onion help to give it a bit of kick and the pomegranate seeds are a fun way to fresh things up a bit.

Lunch 3 close

Amy loved it, of course – though I have suspicions extra large portion of dark raspberry chocolate may have helped! I mean… it never hurts, right? Put it next to some fresh, crisp vegetables and you get a really balanced lunchbox. We were going for a bit of a Moroccan vibe here with the quinoa, and I think it worked out really well – definitely inspiration to do some more ‘around the world’ Lettuce Lunch posts! What do you guys think – where to next? 🙂

  • Quinoa, roasted potato and sweet potato, red onion, coriander, pomegranate, goat’s cheese, charred capsicum
  • Lindt raspberry chip dark chocolate
  • Red cabbage, spring onion, carrot

Lunchbox: Basil pesto mini pizzas

Lunch 2

Oh pizza… so amazingly delicious, but what’s with all those calories? You make us simultaneously happy and sad and we need to work on you. What if we could have a saucy, crunchy pizza experience while leaving the extra baggage out of it? Time to get to work!

It was from this simple need that the basil pesto mini pizza was created. Look, when you really think about it, pizza doesn’t have to be so bad for you. Replacing the white base with whole grain is a great start, and if you don’t add cheese and focus on the vegetables then you’re essential just having a salad with a bit of bread on the side, which doesn’t sound nearly so bad. Replacing the traditional sauce with pesto just gives it a fresher taste. Is it pizza? Is it some sort of open-faced sandwich/foccacia hybrid? Well, whatever it is, it works, so we’ll leave the naming conventions up to you.

Side view 2

The real beauty of these pizzas/not pizzas is, of course, that you don’t really have to follow a recipe. You just load it up with whatever you like or have on hand, and go to town. Even the pesto is optional! It goes really well with the whole grain, but if you prefer a tomato based sauce, go right ahead. The olives are a must though! That little hit of salt really elevates the flavour – just don’t go overboard! Pair it with something fresh and sweet, and you have a healthy, filling lunchtime treat. Enjoy!

  • Wholegrain bread or muffin, mixed beans, tomato, pumpkin, olives, pine nuts, caramelised onion, pesto, mixed leaves, avocado
  • Granola, yoghurt, pomegranate, pepitas
  • Strawberries

Lunchbox: Avocado, grapefruit and beetroot salad

First lunchbox

Hey everyone! First post ever!

That’s right, this is the first lunchbox ever brought to life in the Lettuce Lunch kitchen, and what a risk it was! You see, Amy has never been one for grapefruit. I love it. She hates it. It’s just one of those things. I assured her this was going to work; creamy avocado and earthy beetroot always are a fantastic way to keep the tartness of a blushing ruby-red in check.

With that in mind, I got to work and made this little box of goodness. Pairing it up with some healthy, neutral greens, I knew I had a hit on my hands. It turns out Amy agreed! I was pretty eager for her feedback and sure enough, she loved it. When I got the lunchbox back at the end of the day there was not a speck of grapefruit to be found! It had worked, the grapefruit was gone and Lettuce Lunch was born in earnest.

First lunch side view

I think the takeaway message here is you have to try this salad ha ha. It’s such a unique, colourful combination. I decided to go without dressing to let the vegetables do all the talking, but I think a little splash of balsamic could work too – beetroot and balsamic are best friends, after all! Pair it with your favourite dip and some crackers for a bit of body and heartiness, and you should have a healthy lunch on your hands in no time 🙂

  • Avocado, grapefruit, beetroot, broccolini, rocket, pine nuts and sesame seeds
  • Bagel crisps, sweet chilli cream cheese
  • Hummus, peas, chilli, cracked pepper