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It’s winter, it’s cold, and whilst we all love our soups and slow cooked hearty meals, sometimes we just feel like a good ol’ salad.

Forget the light and leafy salad that we chow down during summer time, I’m talking about those hearty winter salads with ancient grains, roasted vegetables, plenty of flavour, and comforting creamy dressings. The body is a miraculous thing, and we often forget it knows best. Craving heartier food in winter is completely natural; consumption of more root vegetables, grains, protein,and even more fats is essential to keep our body warm and keep us grounded.

According to Ayurveda eating in season helps maintain healthy weight and optimises energy levels throughout your day. So next time you think you should be eating a light a leafy salad because you fear you have perhaps over consumed on the carbs, remember that your body burns fuel more in winter and needs to be replenished with complex carbohydrates, root vegetables and warming foods. Don’t sweat the small stuff and remember to give your body what it wants.

This is one of my all-time favourite winter salads; every ingredient is chosen for it’s health benefit and combined together to make the perfect, Japanese inspired bowl.

Wild Rice: Has an earthy nutty flavour that is high in protein, dietary fibre, amino acids and more digestible then regular white rice.

Kale: High in Iron, antioxidants, fibre, and anti-inflammatory.

Nori: Dried seaweed is high in iodine, calcium, magnesium, iron, vitamins C and A, protein, Vitamins B, fibre and so much more.

Eggplant: High in water for extra hydration during the cooler months and high in fibre, potassium , vitamin C, vitamin B-6 – great for supporting heart health.

Miso: Fermented soy bean that aids in digestion, is anti-inflammatory and immune boosting.

Finding ingredients to gain maximum nutrition is all part of a healthy eating plan.

As the ambassador of Westfield KNOX: EAT.DRINK.WESTFIELD Festival I will be on site this Saturday for live cooking demonstrations to show you just how easy it is. I’ll also be around for a meet and greet and can help answer any of your questions. Come and sample some delicious goodies, while you do your grocery shop, and enjoy fresh food tasting from local vendors. For more information on event details click here

Ingredients

1 cup Wild Rice

1 cup edamame beans, shelled.

1 large eggplant

6 large kale leaves

2 tbs sesame seeds

5- 10 sheets of Nori (Sushi paper)

Dressing

2 Tbs white miso paste

1 tbs rice wine vinigar

1 knob fresh ginger

1 1/2 tbs pure maple syrup

1 tbs tahini

1 – 2 tbs Water to water it down

Method

Preheat a fan forced oven to 180 degrees C.

In a saucepan, bring 1 cup of wild rice to 2 cups of water to the boil and bring to a simmer. Cook for around 20 minutes or as to packet instructions.

Place 1 cup of edamame beans on the stove, simmering for 5 minutes until cooked. Drain.

Prepare the Dressing by combining all in a jug and and mixing with a spoon, add 1 tbs of water at a time to thin out if too runny.

Cut the eggplant in half length ways then into generous chunks (around 4cm x 4cm) and toss the eggplant in a bowl with half the miso sauce, coating evenly.

Spread out on a tray and bake for 10 – 15 minutes.

Whilst baking, chop up the kale leaves and place in a bowl, drizzle some extra virgin olive oil and sea salt, massaging the kale leaves until well coated.

Chop or break up the nori sheets into strips.

Drain the rice, place in a salad bowl, add in the cooked edamame beans, nori, eggplant and kale. Drizzle some more dressing and sprinkle with some sesame seeds to serve.

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author

Brooke Meredith

Brooke Meredith, is the passionate founder and Editor-In-Chief of A Conscious Collection Magazine. A glowing representation of wellness, and an advocate for healthy living. Brooke’s passion for health and wellbeing began following the discovery of her own intolerances and health ailments. Her house soon became a hub for recreating healthy versions of her favourite recipes, and soon her home was filled with an abundance of nourishing, nutritious whole foods. A certified Health Coach, Brooke’s passion lies with helping others become the best version of themselves and created A Conscious Collection to nurture, empower and inspire. As an Australian model, Brooke lives and breathes wellness, understanding the direct correlation between looking and feeling your best, which comes with a life in balance. When you can pry her away from working on all things ACC, you’ll find her fleeting around the globe on wellness escapes, enjoying three hour brunch dates with girlfriends and diving mouth first in to her famous healthified chocolate brownies.

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