Quick and easy summer salads

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 Prawn and Soba Noodle Salad with sesame-ginger dressing

400 gm soba noodles
2 Lebanese cucumbers,
diced 2 spring onions,
thinly sliced 16 medium cooked prawns, peeled, tails intact, and de-veined
1/3 cup coarsely chopped coriander
To serve:toasted sesame seeds

Sesame-ginger dressing
75 ml light soy sauce
50 ml brown rice vinegar
50 ml olive oil
2½ tsp hulled tahini
1 tsp finely grated ginger

Cook soba in a large saucepan of boiling water until just tender (2-4 minutes). Drain and refresh under cold running water.

For sesame-ginger dressing, whisk ingredients in a bowl until smooth. Season with black pepper and pour dressing over noodles, add cucumber and spring onions and toss to combine, then serve topped with prawns and scattered with coriander and sesame seeds.

grilled peach salad

Grilled Peach and Bacon Salad


1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons chopped mint
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
2 tablespoons snipped chives
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
Salt and freshly ground pepper
500g thick-sliced bacon
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 kilo sweet onions, cut into 1-inch-thick slabs
Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
4 large ripe peaches, cut into 1/2-inch wedges


Preheat the oven to 180°. In a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the sour cream, buttermilk, mint, parsley, chives and vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate.

Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the bacon slices on the sheet in a single layer and sprinkle with the brown sugar and cayenne. Bake for about 25 minutes, until caramelized (the bacon will crisp as it cools). Let cool, then cut the bacon into bite-size pieces.

Meanwhile, light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Brush the onions with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill over moderate heat, turning occasionally, until softened and browned, 10 minutes. Separate the onions into rings. Brush the peaches with olive oil and grill over moderately high heat until tender, 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

In a large bowl, toss the onions with the peaches and bacon. Add the buttermilk dressing and toss to coat. Serve right away.

Serves 8

melon salad

Melon, Berry and Feta Salad

This sweet-savory combination of fruit and salty feta cheese is a perfect showcase for superb summer melon. You can swap the feta for ricotta salata, or the chives for mint.

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 small shallot, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon minced preserved lemon peel or lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 green melon halved, cut into wedges, peeled and thinly sliced
1/2 orange or yellow melon, halved, cut into wedges, peeled and thinly sliced
1 cup blackberries
55g feta cheese, cut into thin slices
2 tablespoons snipped chives


In a small bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, shallot, preserved lemon and crushed red pepper and season with salt and pepper.

Arrange the melon slices and blackberries on a platter. Drizzle the dressing over the fruit. Garnish the salad with the feta and snipped chives and serve.

Serves 6

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