May 06, 2012

Vitamin Boost Salad

I have a confession to make. I'm not a huge fan of papaya (or pawpaw) on its own, but I am aware of its ridiculously impressive list of nutrients and health benefits, so every now and then I try to find ways to slip it into salads. I'm so glad I do, because I'm reminded every time that combined with other equally healthy ingredients, papaya is about as delicious as it can get.

It may seem like I've gone all out with this dish, but really this vitamin boost salad is no effort to prepare and you may even cut the corners and use canned chickpeas if you like, just don't tell me about it. I feel that the humble buckwheat is a bit underrated at times, especially when it's trying to compete with all the exotic guys like quinoa and amaranth. In this dish, however, buckwheat is definitely the way to go. 

Feel free to get creative with herbs and spices - fresh herbs would of course be fantastic, but I've opted for dried mint and a healthy pinch of sumac. Instead of walnuts, try sesame seeds (white or black), pine nuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds or hemp seeds. They would all be equally tasty. 


Vitamin Boost Salad
(serves 2-4)

200g cooked chickpeas
200g raw buckwheat
1 medium sized papaya
1 avocado
1 pomegranate
1 green onion
a pinch of sumac
a pinch of dried mint (or a small handful of fresh!)
1 lime
a good quality salt and black pepper, to taste
50g walnuts
baby spinach or kale, to serve

1. Cook buckwheat in boiling water for about 5 minutes or until just tender. Drain and rise with cold water to stop cooking. 

2. Peel and chop papaya into bite sized pieces. Cut the avocado into cubes and finely chop the green onion. Combine chickpeas, buckwheat, papaya, avocado and green onion in a large bowl.

3. Add arils of one pomegranate. Season the salad with sumac, mint, juice of one lime, salt and pepper. Toast walnuts on a dry pan and toss them in as well. Serve the salad with some baby spinach or kale.  


  1. I'm with you on the papaya... it's definitely not my favorite fruit. But I do like it in its unripe stage in green papaya salad or when it's blended with pineapple, lime juice and mint topped with ginger ale. But I guess at that point you can barely taste the papaya :)

  2. I just love papaya especially the peppery taste of the pips, I could eat it happily every day of my life which I almost did when I lived in S.Africa. I seldom see them in the shops here :( Diane

  3. Onpa kaunis salaatti !En itsekään pidä papaijasta erityisemmin,mutta juuri sen terveysvaikutusten vuoksi käytän sitä joskus smoothieissa.

  4. Looks beautiful and healthy

  5. I love chickpeas and I can eat it everyday. Your salad is ideal for me :)

  6. Looks good. I need to start eating buckwheat (and pawpaw)!

  7. I am a big fan of pawpaw so I do eat it quite a lot, just on its own :) I also do like buckwheat but I think of it quite differently to quinoa.. there are times when I want to eat each of them, and I don't really interchange them. Anyway, also want to tell you I've been adding chia seeds into a lot of my salads, and loving it :)

  8. Am grinning like the proverbial Cheshire cat 'cause I just LOVE pawpaw [OK: papaya]! Interesting salad, the recipe of which I'll file, but the very, very best of papaya is in wedges for breakfast with a lime squeeze and the best of black coffee! And someone dishy with whom to share!

  9. Wow, looks delicious! I'll definitely give this a try soon!

  10. Just writing to say that I’ve nominated you for the ‘One Lovely Blog’ Award! Your blog inspires me ... so thank you! (For more information about the award, and how to pass it on, please stop by


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