We Indians love food and why not, after all we from the khate – peete families, right? Everyone wants to have overloaded cheese pizza but not overloaded belly fat and that’s when salads come to the rescue because we are equally conscious about our looks and well – being. Salads can be boring and sad but hey! You can make it healthily delicious. Salads have traditionally been considered a side dish in Indian cuisine. According to the traditional thali serving system in India, salads should be served on the left side of the thali, and they are to be eaten in moderation since they have not undergone the ritual of cooking (Agni Sanskara).
Salads are a very good source of different micronutrients and area great way of adding different veggies and sprouts in our diet, especially for children who are fussy about eating veggies. Apart from enhancing the taste of food, salads are a great way of making our food visually appealing and stimulating our taste buds.
Let’s look at some healthy salad recipes that are a treat to our eyes and are healthy and filling as well.
1. Spinach Salad
a. Take raw spinach, wash it thoroughly, and chop it. Boil it for few minutes until half cooked.
b. Take the half-cooked spinach in a bowl. Add coarsely grounded peanuts and salt for seasoning.
c. In a pan, heat 2-3 tsp of oil. Add ½ tsp of mustard seeds. Let the mustard seeds crackle, and then add 1 finely chopped chilly, a pinch of asafetida, and a pinch of turmeric.
d. Add this tempering mixture into the bowl of spinach, and seal the bowl tightly. Let the aroma of the tempering get infused in the spinach.
e. After 5 minutes, open the bowl, pour in a spoon of lemon juice, and mix. Serve this as a side dish along with the main course.
Benefits: Spinach is a rich source of folic acid and iron and is very useful for low hemoglobin levels (anemia).
2. Raw Mango Salad
a. Take a raw mango (kairi).Wash it properly and keep aside for drying.
b. Peel the mango skin and grate it or chop into small pieces.
c. Add finely chopped onion in equal quantity. Add cumin powder, red chili powder, sugar, and salt as per taste.
d. Heat 1-2 tsp of oil in a pan and add a pinch of turmeric to it. Blend it into the above mixture.
e. Finally, add finely chopped coriander on top. Keep aside for a while. Serve along with rice.
Benefits: As raw mango is a rich source of vitamin A and C, it is very good for the skin and eyes.
3. Potato Pomegranate Salad
a. Boil the potatoes, peel them, and chop into small pieces.
b. Add finely chopped onions, pomegranate, and coriander.
c. Add cumin powder, chat masala, red chili powder, and black salt for taste.
d. Add lemon juice for seasoning.
Benefits: As potatoes area rich source of vitamin B6 and pomegranates are rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, this is a nutrient-rich recipe. Also, pomegranates help in improving hemoglobin levels.
4. Moong Lentils Salad
a. Soak moong dal in water for 2-3 hours.
b. Drain all the water and add finely chopped cucumber, grated coconut, coriander leaves, and green chilly. Instead of green chilly, black pepper powder can be used.
c. Heat 2-3 tsp of oil in a pan. Add some mustard seeds, let them crackle. Add few curry leaves and a pinch of asafetida.
d. Then pour this entire mixture into the moong dal salad.
e. Add some lemon juice and serve.
Benefits: Moong dal is said to be the best among all pulses by Ayurveda, and is a rich source of proteins.
5. Cucumber Salad
a. Rinse the cucumber well in water, chop finely, and keep aside for 10-15 minutes.
b. Meanwhile, roast a few groundnuts, peel them, and crush to a coarse powder.
c. Drain all the excess water from the cucumber. Add the coarse groundnut powder into the cucumber.
d. Add freshly grated coconut, finely chopped coriander, and finely chopped green chili.
e. Heat 1-2 tsp of oil. Add 1 tsp of mustard seeds and few curry leaves. Once the mustard seeds crackle, add the entire mixture into the cucumber salad.
f. Add lemon juice and black salt for seasoning.
Benefits: Cucumbers help us to stay hydrated, and are very good for skin texture. Hence, this is a very good side recipe for summer.
6. Sprouts Salad
a. Any sprouted beans like moong or matki can be used for this salad.
b. Steam or boil the sprouts until they are completely cooked.
c. Add finely chopped onion, tomato, green chili, and potato.
d. Then add red chili powder and chaat masala. Add lemon juice or a few tsp of curd.
Benefits: All sprouts are rich sources of proteins. Hence, this is a very good recipe for growing children and pregnant women.
7. Tomato-Cucumber Salad
a. Mix finely chopped tomato, cucumber, onions, green chilies, and coriander in a bowl.
b. Add cumin powder, chaat masala, and black salt for seasoning.
c. Finally, add lemon juice or few tsp of curd as per taste.
Benefits: Both tomatoes and cucumbers are rich in micronutrients and enhance the taste of the food being citric in nature.
Go on and try these amazing and super- healthy salad recipes! We are sure you will come back with only compliments on the glowing skin and perfect body!
Dr. Rachita Narsaria