Sunday, October 26, 2014

Clean, Mean, Crisp And Crunchy Capsicum and Apple Salad

When I meet friends that I don't see often, I rarely go without taking lots of photographs. Apart from holding on to the memories, there are other reasons that are quite selfish. It is in the quest of the perfect Facebook profile picture where I look as slim and as happy and as put together as possible. Needless to say, only how I look reflects in my picture so I end up being disappointed with a lot of the pictures I take. This is the first time I went without taking pictures at all when my friends and I met a couple of days ago. Instead, I took pictures of the salad I had made because I was so in love with its looks.

I even managed to take decent 'arty' pictures of half-empty plates, something I have always wanted to do. Whenever I've tried, those plates would look like gory battlefields and I would abandon them. Ah, how important it is to appear perfect if not actually be perfect!

I somehow end up not liking my own salads because my dressings never seem to achieve the right balance of tastes and I felt the same way with this too. However, this time I did things the right way and tossed the salad only when it was time to serve it, and my friends lapped it up. One of them, H, said that the taste of the capsicum had adhered to the apple and she found it interesting. That was because I had cut up the fruit and vegetables and chilled them in the serving dish before taking them over to V's place where we ate. I had mixed the dressing too ahead of serving time and let it sit for a while so that the flavours could meld.

The ultimate result was my dream salad: The others liked it, so did I, it looked beautiful, stayed crisp, was light and had clean, uncomplicated flavours. Incidentally, did you see this article in the kitchn? Until I read it and the comments it attracted, I had always thought 'clean' meant light, straightforward flavours that came through without the diners having to wonder what they were. Turns out it could mean different things to different people, and even gets their goats.

Here's the recipe for my clean, mean, fruit and vegetable salad.

Capsicum/bell pepper - 3, diced
Cucumber - 1, de-seeded and diced
Golden apple -2, sliced
Juice of 1 lime

Toss the apples in lime juice, mix with the capsicum and apple and chill. 

Juice of 2 limes
An equal volume of olive oil
1/8 tsp of minced ginger
2 pinches each of cumin powder & red chilli flakes
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp sugar substitute
1 tsp iodized salt

 Put all the ingredients in a small dish, 'beat' well with a fork and then store the dressing till you need to use it. Pour over salad at serving time, toss salad. Enjoy!


When I asked for critical evaluation, after some consideration, H said that maybe I could use fewer capsicum because not everyone might like more of those in relation to the rest of the components. She herself liked it, she said.



  1. Looks really clean and fresh (haven't read that link yet :-) )
    I still haven't been able to add apple to any salads as they turn dark in a while.
    And I love that sketch on you fb profile. :)

  2. Oh, apply lime juice liberally, that tip really works. I sliced the apples for some three hours before we ate the salad. And thanks, that sketch was my own and I really do look like that!

    1. Much thanks Sra! The tip worked for me! :-)
      I added chopped apples to my regular sprouted moong salad ... loved the taste of lime juice on the apples too. The Bengali in me could not resist adding a dash of mustard oil too ... along with the chopped onions +green chillies+pomegranate seeds+black pepper powder.
      I know it sounds crazy but the apples went perfectly with them.
      Thanks again! :)

  3. This should taste delicious ..I have always loved apples in my salad ..have you tried it with orange or red bell pepper , red ones are sweet at least that is what we get here..and also like you said they give nice crunch ...About FB profile- Most of them are not exact replica of their FB profile pictures in real life ...So why bother with profile pictures..I think one should be comfortable with own selves :-) doesn't matter if one is fat/slim/gorgeous or dull ..hugs and smiles

    1. Hi Jaya, yes, red peppers are sweet and yellow is sweeter. FB profile pic - yes, I'm less obsessed with how I look now but always want to put my best face forward! :-D


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