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Kale and Quinoa Salad

Thank you Recipetineats.com

This Kale and Quinoa Salad is a really tasty salad that just happens to star two super foods – kale and quinoa. Fresh herbs, crushed nuts and feta plus a beautiful lemon dressing makes this Kale Salad so tasty, it’s scrumptious enough to have as meal or as a side dish.

The secret to making raw kale really tasty is to massage it with olive oil and salt. This tenderises the kale, and makes raw kale salads really delicious!

Ingredients:

MARINATED KALE:
•    8 cups (packed) kale leaves (Note 1)
•    1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
•    1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
•    QUINOA:
•    1 cup quinoa, any colour
•    2 cups water

DRESSING:
•    Zest of 1 large lemon
•    2 1/2 tbsp lemon juice
•    3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
•    1 tsp Dijon mustard (or American)
•    1 garlic clove , minced
•    1 tsp sugar (optional, I add it)
•    1/2 tsp each salt and pepper

SALAD:
•    1/4 cup dill leaves , roughly chopped
•    1/4 cup coriander/cilantro leaves , roughly chopped
•    1 red onion , quartered and finely sliced (optional)
•    1/3 - 1/2 cup chopped roasted almonds
•    100 g/3.5oz crumbled feta

Instructions:
MARINATED KALE:
1.    Scrunch up the kale leaves then slice to about 1cm / 2/5" thickness.
2.    Transfer to large bowl.
3.    Drizzle over oil, scatter with salt and pepper. Use your hands to scrunch the kale leaves for 1 minute (see video). It should shrink to about half the size.
4.    Set aside for 30 minutes. The leaves will soften, making them suitable for eating raw.
QUINOA:
1.    Place quinoa in a fine mesh colander, then rinse under running water for 30 seconds. Drain excess water well. (Or do this in a big bowl)
2.    Place in a saucepan with water. Cover with lid, bring to simmer over medium heat then leave for 12 - 15 minutes until all water is absorbed.
3.    Remove from heat, leave lid on, and rest for 5 - 10 minutes. Fluff with fork then cool (spread on tray and refrigerate to speed up).
DRESSING:
1.    Place ingredients in a jar, screw lid on and shake well. Set aside for 10 minutes.
SALAD:
2.    Add the quinoa into the bowl with the kale. Add all the dill and coriander/cilantro, half the nuts, feta, and 2/3 of dressing.
3.    Toss well.
4.    Transfer into serving platter or bowls. Drizzle with remaining dressing, garnish with remaining feta and nuts. 

Recipe Notes:
1. TO REMOVE KALE LEAVES - see video, it's helpful. Hold the kale by the stem them grasp the base of the leafy part then run your hand up the stem to remove the leaves.
AMOUNT TO USE: No need for 100% accuracy here because the kale wilts so much with marinating. Use 8 cups jam packed with the kale leaves (before chopping).
TYPE OF KALE: Tuscan or curly kale is fine to use for this technique. I use curly kale because it's the more common one here in Australia and it's cheaper.
2. STORAGE: This is a great salad to keep for a few days - kale is quite hardy (unlike normal salad leaves which wilt quickly on contact with dressing). It's great for 2 days, still good on Day 3. I like to hold back some of the Dressing (see recipe steps) for this reason - because it freshens up the salad to add dressing if serving after the day of making it.
3. HOW TO SERVE: I've been obsessively eating this as a meal. The quinoa makes this filling so you're not craving ice cream 30 minutes after dinner. Try adding shredded chicken or even canned tuna for more protein. 
It's also terrific served as a side for any cooked protein because it's veg + filling carb in one.

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Roast Chicken 

Thank you Recipetineats.com

Slathered with a garlic-herb-lemon butter, this roast chicken is juicy on the inside with crispy golden skin on the outside. An all round flavour bomb with the most incredible liquid gold pan juices to use as the sauce! See notes for gravy option and cook times for other chicken sizes. 

Ingredients
•    1.75 - 2 kg  whole chicken , patted dry
•    Salt and pepper
•    2 tsp olive oil
•    1 lemon, quartered
•    3 rosemary sprigs

BUTTER:
•    100 g / 1 stick unsalted butter , melted
•    3 garlic cloves , minced
•    1 tbsp sage , finely chopped (Note 1)
•    2 tsp rosemary , finely chopped (Note 1)
•    1 tbsp parsley , finely chopped (Note 1)
•    1/2 tsp each salt and black pepper

UNDER CHOOK:
•    1 cup / 250 ml dry white wine , or low sodium chicken broth
•    1 onion , quartered (Note 2)
•    1 garlic bulb , halved horizontally (Note 2)

Instructions
1.    Take the chicken out of the fridge 30 minutes before cooking.
2.    Preheat oven to 220C/450F (standard) or 200C/430F (fan/convection). Put shelf in the middle.
3.    Mix together Butter ingredients. Add juice from 2 wedges of lemon.
4.    Place chicken in a roasting pan. Use a dessert spoon to loosen skin from chicken (see video). Do the top (the breast) and the drumsticks – not the underside.
5.    Prop chicken upright, drizzle butter under skin, using most of the garlic/herb sludge, but saving a bit of butter for the skin (Note 3).
6.    Drizzle / smear remaining butter all over surface of the chicken. Squeeze over juice of 2 lemon wedges.
7.    Stuff used lemon wedges and rosemary inside chicken.
8.    Tie drumstick ends with string and tuck wing tips under the chicken.
9.    Sprinkle all over with salt and pepper.
10.    Place onion and garlic in the pan, place chicken on top. Pour wine around, drizzle chicken with oil.
11.    Transfer to oven. Roast for 10 minutes, then turn oven down to 180C/350F (all oven types). Roast for a further 1 hr 15 minutes, or until the internal temperature is 75C/165F or until juices run clear when pierced at the join between the drumstick and the body. Baste twice (30 min then at 1 hr), spooning pan juices over skin.
12.    Rest for 15 minutes – don’t cover, skin becomes wet.
13.    Serve with pan juices (see video for how to carve). I discard onion but use the garlic in the pan. See notes for side suggestions & how to use carcass for incredible homemade broth!

Recipe Notes:
1. Herbs - Rosemary and sage are classic pairings with chicken, parsley adds more green specks in the butter and a tiny touch of freshness. Feel free to use herbs of choice. Go easy with more rosemary - it’s a strong herb.
Can also sub with 2 – 3 tsp of dried herbs of choice (use 2 tsp of strong flavoured dried herbs like thyme, oregano, sage, mixed herbs, tarragon or 3 tsp of light flavoured dried herbs like dill, parsley, dill)
2. Onion and garlic: These serve 2 purposes: elevate chicken out of liquid a bit and they add tons of flavour into the pan juices used as the sauce. I don't bother peeling the onion because I usually discard it - because it sits under the chicken, it gets slimy and very oily. Feel free to use peeled onion and eat it.
3. Garlic-herb-butter: Get most of the garlic-herb sludge under the skin because if it’s on the surface of the skin, the garlic burns. So minimise the garlic sludge on the skin.
4. GRAVY option:
50 g / 3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp / 40 g flour (any white)
2 cups / 500 ml liquid from pan topped up with low sodium chicken broth
Melt butter over medium heat, add flour, stir for 1 minute. Add half the liquid while whisking. Once incorpoated and lump free, add remaining liquid. Continue cooking for 2 minutes, stirring regularly, until gravy thickens. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
5. COOK TIMES: 10 minutes at 220C/450F, then 20 minutes for every 500g/1lb at 180C/350F until the internal temperature is 75C/165F or until juices run clear. This assumes the chicken was taken out of the fridge 30 minutes before cooking. If it’s fridge cold, add another 10 minutes to the cook time.
6. TYING DRUMSTICKS: I find it easiest to use one piece of string, wrap string around one leg, then yank the other leg closer and wrap string around that one to. Then once string is around both of them, it's much easier to handle to use the string to pull then together then wrap the string around both of them tightly so they are crossed over each other.
7. CARCASS and leftover bits/juices: Scrape it all into a pot or slow cooker, add water so water is about 2.5cm / 1" above chicken. Add 2 tsp Vegeta or chicken stock powder or 2 crumbled cubes, celery, carrot and a few garlic cloves (chunky pieces) and a few sprigs of fresh herbs like thyme/rosemary/parsley OR 1 tsp dried herbs. Simmer 1 hour  / slow cooker 6 hours, strain. Pick out/off bits of chicken to use in soup. Use as incredible broth for Chicken Noodle Soup or Chicken Rice Soup.
8. SIDES: Roast potatoes (cut, toss in olive oil, salt, pepper and herbs, roast under chicken for 40 minutes), mashed potato or cauliflower, or garlic bread. Also try Potatoes au Gratin or Easy Cheesy Potato Bake - can make ahead then reheat in oven quickly. 
Pictured on the very edge of photo in post is this Kale Quinoa Salad (I often have it on hand as it lasts for days and days). Other great salads: Corn Salad with Avocado and Tomato, Roast Pumpkin Spinach Salad, a garden salad with Italian or French Dressing.

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Rice Paper Roll in a Bowl 

Thank you Sami Bloom 

Serves 1

Ingredients: 
•    Standard serving size (50-60g) Rice noodles cooked according to package
•    1/4 avocado sliced
•    1 carrot julienne
•    3 small radish thinly sliced
•    100g tempehs sliced and pan-fried in Tamari 3 mins each side
•    5 shiitake mushroomss sliced
•    1 cup spinach chopped
•    1/4 cup mint leaves
•    1 tbsp chia seeds
DRESSING
•    1 tbsp tamari
•    1 tbsp tahini
•    1/2 lemon juice only
•    1 tsp coconut vinegar / Apple cider vinegar
•    1 tsp sesame oil (optional)

Instructions:
1.    Cook noodles according to packet and tempeh as instructed above, whilst you prepare veggies.
2.    Shake all dressing ingredients together in a jar, until smooth.
3.    Throw the noodles into a bowl (warm or chilled) and mix with the chia seeds and 1/2 the dressing.
4.    Toss through the vegetables until well combined.
5.    Add the tempeh and avocado and drizzle the other half of the dressing on top.
6.    Serve!

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Lentil & Veggie Shepherds Pie 

Thank you Sami Bloom 

Hearty and delicious, this nourishing veg dish appeals to just about everyone! Mix and match your veg fillings, or change up the potatoes for sweet potatoes to keep it interesting... this one will be on high rotation in the house!

Serves : 6 

Ingredients: 
•    400 g cooked lentils (one can, drained and rinsed) *could use beans too
•    1 brown onion diced
•    1 stalk celery sliced
•    1 carrot sliced
•    1 cup button mushrooms quartered
•    1 cup green beans OR broccoli (whatever you have on hand)
•    3 cloves garlics minced
•    500 g pasta sauce or canned tomatoes
•    1 tbsp. tamari sauce
•    1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce (optional)
•    1 tsp. dried oregano
•    1/2 tsp. dried thyme
•    Sea salt (or herbamare) and pepper to season
•    4 large white / dutch cream potatoess peeled, chopped (or 2-3 sweet potatoes)
•    1/4 cup soy or nut milk
•    2-3 tbsp. shredded vegan cheese or nutritional yeast
•    Fresh rosemary (to top)

Instructions: 
1.    Steam the potatoes until soft whilst you prepare the filling ingredients.
2.    In a large pan, sauce the onion and garlic in a little olive oil. 2-3 mins.
3.    Add in sliced carrot, celery and dried herbs. 5 mins.
4.    Add in the passata, Tamari, Worcestershire sauce, seasoning, mushrooms and green beans/broccoli or whatever additional veg of choosing. Cover and simmer for 10 mins, stirring occasionally.
5.    Preheat oven to 180 C fan forced.
6.    Once potatoes are steamed, mash them with the plant milk, vegan cheese/nutritional yeast, and salt and pepper. Set aside.
7.    Once veggies are cooked through, pour in strained lentils and mix through. Remove from heat.
8.    Pour the lentil veg mixing into an oven dish.
9.    Scoop mash over top of vegetables, using a fork to lightly pat them down evenly and form a secure solid topping.
10.    Garnish with rosemary, and bake for 40-45 mins.

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