Quick, easy to prepare, delicious and filling, this salad is rich in immune-boosting vitamin C, vitamin A, essential fatty acids, antioxidants and protein.
2 sweet potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1cm discs
1 red pepper, cored, deseeded and sliced
3-4 thyme sprigs
Olive oil, to drizzle
1 head of purple sprouting broccoli, cut into florets
150g feta cheese, cubed
1 tbsp sunflower seeds
1 tbsp cider vinegar
20 or so hazelnuts for garnish
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C/Gas mark 4. Put the sweet potatoes, red pepper and thyme sprigs in a roasting tray and drizzle with some olive oil. Toss well and roast in the oven for about 30 minutes until the potatoes are tender. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, plunge the broccoli florets into a pan of boiling water and blanch for no more than a minute. Drain and refresh in cold water, then drain thoroughly.
Under the grill, toast the hazelnuts for a few minutes.
When all the vegetables are cool, toss them in a bowl with the feta, sunflower seeds, cider vinegar, pepper to taste and a little more olive oil. Scatter the toasted hazelnuts on the top for garnish. Serve at once.
Why is broccoli so good for you?
February to April is when purple sprouting broccoli comes into season (whereas broccoli is in season between July and October in the UK) Broccoli is one of the most power-packed vegetables – it’s loaded with nutrients that can contribute to a healthy body. Not only is it rich in vitamin C – at least one and a half times as much as in oranges, broccoli is also a good source of fibre which helps keep the bowel working efficiently and feeds good bacteria there.
Broccoli (and other members of the brassica family such as cauliflower and kale) is a rich source of chemicals called glucosinolates. These help the body’s detoxification processes in the liver.