Cucumber and Dill Salad

A delicious and refreshing salad for the hot summer months. Super quick and easy, this is a perfect side dish for anything you throw on the barbecue, like veggie kebabs!

Prep time: ~10 minutes
Serves: 4-6
Gluten-free

Ingredients:

  • 2 English cucumbers, very thinly sliced.
  • 1 large handful dill.
  • 1 small handful mint.
  • 2 tbsp olive oil.
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar.
  • salt.
  • pepper.

Cooking Instructions:

Pick the leaves off of the dill and mint, leaving the larger stems behind. Tear the dill into smaller fronds, then finely slice the mint leaves.

In a large bowl, mix the cucumber with the oil, then add in the herbs, salt, and pepper. Toss well to coat, then stir in the vinegar. Give it one last toss, and it’s ready to go! You can also leave this salad in the fridge for a few hours to pickle in the vinegar if you’d like.

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Kale and Cauliflower Salad

Another salad that incorporates roasted vegetables. A little more effort than usual, but I find that mixing the salad while the roasted vegetables are still warm helps the kale tenderize a little bit more and taste better. This particular salad uses cauliflower, red peppers, and carrots – only the cauliflower is roasted, though!

Gluten-free
Serves 6
Prep time: ~30 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 8 large handfuls of chopped kale.
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced.
  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets.
  • 2 large carrots, peeled if desired, finely grated.
  • 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar.
  • 1/2 cup olive oil.
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard.
  • 1 tsp agave syrup.
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and finely grated.
  • salt and pepper, to taste.

Cooking Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 400 F. Line a baking sheet with some parchment paper. Tumble all of your cauliflower florets onto the baking sheet, and season well with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast in the oven for 15-20 minutes, or until soft and cooked all the way through.

While the cauliflower cooks, it’s time to make the dressing. Mix together the olive oil, vinegar, mustard, garlic, agave syrup, salt and pepper. You can blend everything together using an immersion blender, food processor, or standing blender, but you can also just mix it all by hand if you don’t mind the dressing being a little less smooth and uniform.

Once the cauliflower is done, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool slightly. This is a good time to dice up your red pepper and grate your carrots.

When the cauliflower is mostly cooled, but still a little bit warm, place all of your kale into a large bowl and mix in the cauliflower. This will allow the kale to wilt down slightly and become tender and easier to eat. Add in the bell pepper and carrots, and mix those through as well.

Dress well and serve immediately, or serve with dressing on the side to allow everyone to add as much or as little as they like!

Gillis Cucumber Salad

Learned this recipe from my dad a long time ago  after many a hot summer day spent snacking on this. Great for potlucks, picnics, or to accompany anything cooked on the barbecue.

Prep Time: ~70 minutes, including time chilling in the fridge.
Gluten-free
Raw
Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 1-2 large cucumbers, peeled if desired, finely sliced.
  • Other raw vegetables (sliced red peppers and tomatoes are great).
  • 1 tbsp olive oil.
  • 1-2 tbsp vinegar (balsamic or apple cider work well).
  • Salt and pepper, to taste.

Cooking Instructions:

Toss everything in a bowl, stir well. Cover and refrigerate for at least an hour to let the flavours mingle. Serve slightly cooler than room temperature.

Basic Vinaigrette

This is your standard vinaigrette (3 parts oil to one part acid), which can be fancied up any number of ways with different herbs, spices, tapenades, and what have you! Use whatever kinds of oils and vinegars (or other acids, like lemon or lime juice) you like, this is just my go-to for salads. Spring onions, shallots, garlic, and other flavourful additions will spice it up. Mustard makes a good emulsifier to prevent it from separating when mixed. Play around with different ingredients to find out what you like best!

Prep time: ~1 minute
Gluten-free
Raw
Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp olive oil.
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar.
  • salt and pepper, to taste.

Cooking Instructions:

Mix everything together well and pour over your food. Voila!