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Cool down and fill up with these 3 recipes

At the end of a long, hot summer day, the last thing you feel like doing is turning on the oven or stove and cooking a hot meal.

These three recipes are all fast, healthy and require no cooking. Squeeze in a few serves of vegetables with the Watermelon and Feta Salad, cool off after a workout with a refreshing Strawberry Peach Smoothie or fill up on crunchy, flavour-packed Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls. Each recipe has lots of fibre and nutrient-packed whole foods so they’re excellent options if you’re trying to reach or maintain a healthy weight, or simply trying to eat a little healthier.

Watermelon and feta salad

Watermelon has a very high water content of over 90%, so it’s a great fruit to snack on throughout summer to give your body a boost of hydration. Not only is it packed with vitamin C and lycopene (a nutrient with antioxidant properties) but it’s also quite a low-calorie fruit, making it the perfect choice for anyone looking to lose weight.

The addition of greens adds more vitamins, minerals and fibre, while feta cheese provides calcium and a boost of salt to contrast and complement the sweet watermelon.

Ingredients

1 small watermelon, rind removed and chopped into 2cm chunks

1 small red onion, finely sliced

1 bunch of fresh mint, leaves removed and finely chopped

1 bag of rocket

200g feta cheese, chopped into 2cm cubes

Method

Combine all ingredients into a bowl and toss well. Serve with a drizzle of good quality extra virgin olive oil and freshly cracked black pepper.

Serves four.

Strawberry peach smoothie

Eating seasonally is a good way to make sure that you’re getting lots of different nutrients from fresh produce. Summer is a great time for Australian produce, with ripe, juicy cherries, stonefruits, berries, and more.

This hydrating smoothie combines peaches and strawberries, both of which contain fibre, lots of natural sweetness and a host of vitamins and antioxidants. Adding a scoop of protein powder will help you to stay fuller for longer, as well as help your muscles to repair after exercise.

Ingredients

1 peach, chopped

½ a punnet of strawberries

1 cup of almond, oat or cow’s milk

1 cup of ice

1 scoop of protein powder (optional)

Method

Trim the tops of your strawberries and add to a blender with the remaining ingredients. Blend to a smooth consistency - for a thicker smoothie, add extra ice, or add a dash of extra milk to thin it out.

Serves one.

Vietnamese rice paper rolls with satay dipping sauce

These rice paper rolls are the perfect snack or meal during hot weather. They require no cooking, and assembling them can be a fun way to get the whole family involved in preparing dinner.

In addition to being delicious and fun to prepare, the rice paper rolls carry lots of health benefits. They are packed with fresh, crunchy vegetables, and provide a serve of protein.

With their bright colours, crunchy texture and appealing flavour, they’re bound to be a hit with the entire family.

Ingredients

1 packed rice paper

1 large carrot

1 large cucumber

1 large red capsicum

1 cos lettuce

½ a purple cabbage

1 bag of bean sprouts

1 bunch of mint

50g dried vermicelli noodles

400g cooked peeled prawns, or shredded cooked chicken, or strips of tofu

3 tbs peanut butter

Soy sauce to taste

Sriracha to taste

Method

Finely slice the cabbage, carrot, cucumber and capsicum into strips, and set aside.

Rinse and dry the lettuce leaves, and pick mint leaves from the stems, and set both aside.

Prepare vermicelli noodles according to the instructions on the packet, and set aside to cool.

Boil the kettle. While you’re waiting, thoroughly wet a tea towel with cool water. Wring out the excess water and place flat on your kitchen counter.

Pour hot water into a large bowl. Submerge a circle of rice paper in the hot water for 2-3 seconds, before placing flat onto your wet tea towel. Add 2-3 mint leaves down the centre, followed by your choice of protein. Then add a few strips of carrot, capsicum and cumber, a little purple cabbage, a small handful of vermicelli noodles, and top with a lettuce leaf. Be careful not to add too much filling, or you won’t be able to neatly fold your rolls.

Once you have your fillings, gently pick up the top of the rice paper roll and fold own a few centimetres. Repeat with the bottom. Pick up one of the sides of the rice paper, and gently fold over the fillings, before ‘tucking in’ the edge to tighten the roll. Then, from the folded section, roll the rice paper until it’s in a neat and tidy roll. Place to the side and repeat with the remaining ingredients.

To make the dipping sauce, add the peanut butter to a small bowl and add a small amount of freshly boiled water. Stir vigorously until the peanut butter emulsifies and becomes creamy, adding small amounts of hot water as required. Add soy sauce and sriracha to taste.

Serves 4.

You may also be interested in the following:

5 healthy recipes for the whole family
A smoothie bowl recipe for healthy skin
7 High-protein breakfasts to start your day right


  
 
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