Roasted Roots Happy Salad

This nutritious vegan salad is full of mood-boosting ingredients including root vegetables, nuts, and pomegranate seeds. It's bursting with flavour and makes a delicious packed lunch.

Introduction

This colourful warm salad is full of ingredients to help us feel calmer. Walnuts are a great source of omega-3 and selenium – if we are lacking in the mineral selenium, we can feel depressed or anxious, so it’s a great idea to add a few walnuts (or brazil nuts) to your meals when you can. I believe you eat and feast with your eyes first, and this dish is so beautiful to look at, too, and will leave you feeling wonderfully relaxed.

Serves 4
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 40 min
Total time: 50 min

Ingredients

2 carrots, quartered lengthways
2 parsnips, peeled and quartered lengthways
2 red onions, peeled and quartered
2 raw beetroot, peeled and cut into chunks
1 red pepper, sliced into large chunks
A glug olive oil
1 tbsp honey
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves (not peeled)
200g walnuts
100g spinach
A bunch parsley, chopped
1 tbsp pomegranate seeds
edible flowers, such as primroses and chive flowers, to garnish (optional)
For the dressing:
1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
1 tbsp mustard
75ml raw apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp lemon juice
1–2 tbsp honey, to taste
100ml extra-virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Line a roasting tin with baking paper.

Put the carrots, parsnips, red onions, beetroot and red pepper in a bowl and toss in some olive oil, the honey and some seasoning. Spread them out in the lined tin with the garlic and cook in the oven for 35–40 minutes, until tender.

Meanwhile, in a dry frying pan set over a medium heat, gently cook the walnuts, tossing them regularly, until they turn a darker brown colour. It should only take a few minutes – do not leave them or they will burn! Tip them onto a plate to cool a little.

To make the dressing, whisk all the ingredients together.

Put the spinach, parsley and walnuts in a large serving bowl and add the cooked veggies along with all the juices from the roasting tin. Toss well to coat.

Finish with a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds and drizzle over the dressing.

Garnish with the edible flowers, if using.

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