What’s fresh, seasonal, delicious and makes a great starter or main meal? This recipe for Squash, Sweet Potato and Chickpea Salad with Kefir Dressing, of course! The ingredients are packed with nutrients, including protein, fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Often considered a vegetable because of how it’s used in cooking, the butternut squash is, in fact, a fruit. It’s an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, as well as antioxidants, including vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta-carotene – and three tablespoons of cooked butternut squash counts as one of your 5 a day.
Sweet potatoes are a versatile root vegetable that can be prepared in many ways, and in this salad recipe they’re served roasted. This starchy vegetable is rich in fibre, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, which can help promote the growth of good bacteria and contribute to a healthy gut.
High in protein (great for keeping you fuller for longer!) and a rich source of vitamins, minerals and fibre, chickpeas are associated with benefits such as improving digestion.
And of course, we can’t skip the Kefir in the dressing. Kefir is a cultured Dairy drink made with live cultures, which can give your body a dose of live microorganisms crucial to healthy digestion.
First pre-heat the oven to 200ºC/Gas Mark 6. Chop the butternut squash and sweet potato into small, equal sized cubes and scatter them onto a baking tray along with the washed chickpeas. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with paprika before roasting for around 40 minutes, or until the cubes are nicely browned. Meanwhile cut the onion into thin slices and mix with your spinach or rocket leaves.
To make the dressing, simply grate the lemon rind into a bowl and squeeze in the juice. Then add the remaining ingredients and whisk well.
To finish, mix the butternut squash, sweet potato and toasted chickpeas with the leaves and onion, sprinkle with nuts and then drizzle over the creamy Kefir dressing.