Trust us; you have to go no farther than your kitchen or fridge for seasonal fruits and veggies in your kitchen to rustle up a nice, colourful dish.
Mind you, the colors are not only to enhance the look of your dish. Each coloured ingredient brings its own value and properties. Different colors typically signify foods with different vitamins and minerals, which goes to make a complete meal! That’s probably why chefs have been playing around with varied colorful ingredients, veggies and fruits to present a rainbow meal to their diners.
So next time you have a colorful dish on your plate, savour it fully knowing that healthy fruits and vegetables in vivid colors have immense nutritional benefits even as they’re fun to eat.
l Hung curd: 2 tbsp
l Grated cucumber: ½ tbsp
l Pomelo: 15 gm
l Orange: 15 gm
l Salad greens: a handful
l Pumpkin and Sunflower seeds: 1 tsp each.
l Salt: to taste
l Extra virgin olive oil: 2 tsp
l Lemon juice: 1 tsp
l Pepper: a pinch
Method of preparation
1. In a bowl mix the hung curd, grated cucumber and salt.
2. Spread it on the bottom of your bowl.
3. Add your favourite citrus on top, or more like shred it and then add it.
4. Whisk together the EVOO and lemon juice with some salt and pepper to make the dressing.
5. Toss whatever leaves you have at your disposal, can be a salad mix, different types of lettuce or even baby spinach or ghonghura leaves.
6. Put the tossed salad leaves on top of the citrus and finish it by adding some pumpkin and sunflower seeds on top. If required add more dressing!
We do a winter salad where the main components are the citrus varieties available during winter. This salad recipe is a simpler version of it and can be easily made at home. It’s not necessary to use the citrus mentioned below, you can substitute it with blood oranges, grapefruit basically anything you have at home. The crunch can be in the form of seeds, a savoury granola or some crackers,” says chef Dhruv Oberoi
— Chef Dhruv Oberoi, Head Chef — Olive Delhi, The Grammar Room
(Winter is the season for fresh produce, so one can look around and whip this salad up in various ways!)
Mesclun Salad Ingredients:
l Avocado: ¼
l Flax seeds: 5 gm
l Pumpkin seeds: 10 gm
l Orange: 30 gm
l Beetroot: 60 gm
l Cherry Tomato: 6 no
l Black moong sprouts: 20 gm
l Green moong sprouts: 20 gm
l Bell peppers julienne: 10 gm
l Arugula: 60 gm
l Lettuce Icebergs: 40 gm
l Feta cheese: 10 gm
l Baby corn: 15 gm
l Red cabbage:
l Balsamic: 15 ml
Method of preparation
1. Gently wash all the lettuce and soak in cold water for a few minutes. Drain the water and keep it aside.
2. Cut cherry tomatoes into half and avocado into thin slices and keep it aside.
3. Make 2–3 orange segments (slices) with a sharp thin knife by carefully cutting between a segment and the membrane.
4. Boil the beetroots and slice it
5. Boil baby corn and cut it into thin strips.
6. Take a large bowl, mix all the ingredients
7. Dress it with balsamic vinegar.
8. Dish out on a plate/salad bowl and garnish with feta cheese.
— Chef Sathish Kumar, Executive Sous Chef, Sheraton Hyderabad Hotel)
HOLO Drizzled Rainbow Fruit Salad
l Oranges: 4 nos.
l Lime: 1 no.
l Strawberries: 200 g
l Pineapples: 200 g
l Black berries: 150 g
l Blueberries: 150 g
l Red grapes: 150 g
l Seedless green grapes: 200 g
l Sprig of mint leaves: for garnish
l Honey: 2 tbsp
l Lime (juiced): 1
l Orange (deseeded and juiced): 1
l Honey: 2 tbsp (whisked and set aside)
Method of preparation
1. Take the remaining oranges, peel and separate them into pods after de-seeding them.
2. Wash the strawberries and dice them into halves.
3. Dice the pineapples into small cubes.
4. Wash the black berries, blue berries, red and green grapes and keep aside.
5. Take a large glass bowl and add all the fruits.
6. Season with a pinch of salt.
7. Drizzle the honey, lime-orange dressing (called HOLO).
8. Mix well.
9. Garnish with a sprig of mint leaves and serve.
— Chef Naresh Behera, Executive Sous Chef, Regent Club by Brigade Group
Rajasthani Millet Mushroom Risotto
l Arborio rice: 250 gm
l Broken millet: 150 gm
l Fresh mushroom: 200 gm
l Broccoli: 100 gm
l Carrot: 100 gm
l Zucchini (red and yellow): 100 gm
l French beans: 80 gm
l Bell pepper (red and yellow): 100 gm
l Parsley: 20 gm
l Garlic: 50 gm
l Black pepper: 10 gm
l Salt: to taste
l Saffron: 1 gm
Method of preparation
1. Broken millet and Arborio rice mixed togather and cooked well done into boiling water.
2. In a pan take olive oil to toss garlic, black pepper and chopped vegetables — broccoli, carrot, French beans.
3. Mix rice and millet with vegetables. Toss mushroom and garlic with black pepper for the base of Risotto. Serve with sautéed vegetables.
—Chef Bhanwar Rathore, Head Chef, WelcomHeritage Cheetahgarh Resort & Spa, Bera Rajasthan
l Keeps our heart healthy and decreases risk of stroke
l Prevents and fights cancer
l Good for urinary tract health
l Improves memory
l Decreases inflammation in the body and helps prevent cancer
l Keeps the immune system strong
l Helps keep the skin glowing and healthy
l Good for the eyesight — helps vision at night
l Protects the eyes by preventing cataracts
l Slows down age-related eyesight weakness and issues
l Also contains Folic Acid, an important nutrient for having healthy babies
l Keeps our bones, teeth and nails strong, and prevents blood clots
l Helps in ageing gracefully by improving one’s memory
l Helps keep the skin youthful and supple
l Reduces blood pressure and lowers the risk of stroke and heart disease
l Helps fight cancers, especially those in the GI tract
l Lowers cholesterol and blood pressure
l Keeps the bones strong and healthy
l Helps fight cancers, especially stomach cancer
Fresh Vegetable Vietnamese Rice Paper Rolls
Plant-based food is an emerging trend and people the world over are increasingly adopting plant-based diets. Phytochemicals are chemicals that occur naturally and are responsible for the colour, smell and taste of each plant. They are also responsible for the micronutrients and the nutrition that one would derive from eating that plant. As each of the phytochemicals provides different health benefits, we can take the super health benefit of these by including a variety of colourful phytochemicals each day. This can be adapted by eating a variety of colourful plant foods each day, or simply explained — eating the RAINBOW DIET.”
— Simran Singh Thapar, Executive Chef, The Leela Palace Udaipur
l Red carrot (large): 1
l Beetroot (medium): 1
l Cucumber (medium): 1
l Bell pepper red (large): 1
l Bell pepper yellow (large): 1
l Spring onion greens (bulbs and greens): 4–5
l Purple cabbage (small): 1
l Ice-berg lettuce (small): 1
l Cashew nut: 1 tbsp
l Ground nut: 1 tbsp
l Sweet chili sauce: 1 tbsp
l Plum sauce: 1 tbsp
l Rice paper sheets: 6 nos.
Method of preparation:
Process all ingredients, as suggested below:
1. Cut carrots, beetroot, cucumber, bell peppers, spring onion into julienne
2. Gently tear the iceberg lettuce and purple cabbage and press down gently to allow it to soften and be folded as a filling.
3. Roast the cashew nuts and groundnuts dryly and crush into a coarse texture to add to the rolls. (Nuts add a wonderful texture as well as richness to the rolls.)
4. Identify an area for making rolls and fill a large bowl with water to immerse the rice paper sheets.
1. Soak a single rice paper in the water until it’s completely soft and flexible. (This could take anywhere from a few seconds to more than 30 seconds. Caution: Too much soaking makes the sheets too hard to handle making it tear off while rolling.)
2. Gently shake the excess water from the soaked rice paper; lay it out straight onto a napkin to absorb excess dripping water and make rolling easy.
3. Let it sit for about 30 seconds. (Note: The sheet won’t stick together properly if they’re really wet.)
4. Sprinkle some crushed cashew-nuts and ground nuts in the center of the wrap.
5. Place the cut vegetables down in the middle of the wrap. Divide the vegetables into 6 parts to make 6 rolls. Vary the amount of filling depending upon how big you want the roll to be.
6. Try to keep the fillings laid out neatly, ensuring there’s ample room on each side to easily fold the wrap.
1. Gently lift the side of the soaked rice paper, which is towards you, and gently pull it forward (away from yourself) over the fillings.
2. Hold the wrap firmly, capturing all the fillings and then roll firmly with a gentle grip keeping in mind not to tear the rice paper sheet while folding it completely.
1. Mix equal quantities of plum sauce and sweet chili sauce and pour over the top with a spoon just before serving to ensure all vegetables are crunchy.
2. Dressing before time would render the vegetables limp.
3. Also, serve extra dipping sauce by side which may be used, as preferred.