Back in the winter when I was a student and had money (GO FIGURE!), me and Mr. Wonderful used to treat ourselves to post-squash lunches at the student-run cafe on campus. I always had the hummus sandwich and a side of seven grain salad (now affectionately named ‘Squash’ Salad, as I’ve come to associate my squash dates with its cold, savoury, spicy goodness).
Alas, now that I’m working (for a living?) I don’t have the extra money on hand to buy
the feeling of being a student cafe lunches. The sandwich, while delicious, is no big deal, it’s just some scrumptiously grainy bread with tomatoes, cucumbers, sprouts and hummus. But the seven grain salad has been driving me mad! I love it so much that sometimes, I just…think about it.
In my quest to recreate it at home, in bulk, for less money, this is what I’ve come up with. It’s not perfect, it doesn’t taste quite like the one at Common Ground, but it’s pretty damn good.
- 1 box of PC Blue Menu 5-Grain Blend
- 1 can of chick peas, drained and rinsed
- 2 sweet bell peppers of your choice, finely chopped
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
Cook the grains according to box directions. When they’re done, drain and rinse and add them to your mixing bowl with the peppers, onion and chickpeas you prepared while they were cooking.
- 1 Tbsp of sesame oil
- 1 Tbsp of hot yellow curry powder
- 1 Tbsp of lemon juice
- 3 Tbsp of rice vinegar
- 1/3 cp of vegetable oil
- 1/2 tsp of cumin
- 1/2 tsp of coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp of chilli powder
- good pinch of salt
- good pinch of pepper
Heat the sesame oil over medium heat in a small skillet and add the curry powder once it’s warm. Stir the powder into the oil until it is fully saturated. While the curry is warming up and releasing it’s magical flavours and aromas, mix the remaining dressing ingredients in a jar and shake ’em up. Don’t forget about your curry! I use homemade curry with mustard seed in it, so once I hear them starting to snap I know it’s good to go, otherwise, once you start to smell it, pour it into your dressing jar. (Don’t wait for it to start turning dark brown, that’s too long!) Shake it up again, taste it and adjust any flavours as you wish. Once it’s perfect, pour the dressing over your salad and stir. Keep this deliciousness in the fridge for as long as you can (mine doesn’t last very long, but if it did, I’d say you can keep it for a little more than a week).