Fasting on Saturday before Feasting on Sunday:
5:2 Diet Autumn Roast Vegetable & Cheese Salad Recipe
By the time I get to the weekend, I have normally fulfilled my two “fast days” and am looking forward to a weekend filled with wine, roast dinners and special baked treats. However, this week as I have been so busy with recipe development for brands, sponsors, magazines and culinary websites, I have eaten like a king and have only just managed to squeeze one low-calorie fast day in all week; so, today is a fast day, and although I will miss my weekend treats, I certainly enjoyed my low-calorie lunch today for a tasty Autumn Roast Vegetable & Cheese Salad.
I have called it an autumn salad as it’s very autumnal in looks and used the last of my summer veggies, aubergines, courgettes, tomatoes and onions. Plus, it is a very robust and filling salad, perfect for these cooler days we are having lately. The addition of some fresh goat’s cheese was an indulgent luxury, but it only added 20 calories to this recipe, and I appreciated the salty and crumbly addition to this plate of roasted veg. I served this salad with some home-grown red veined sorrel leaves, as well as the last of my red oak lettuce leaves, so, it really was an “end of summer” salad in all ways.
I am a big fan of traditional Ratatouille, but, I much prefer the oven baked or roasted version for many reasons; firstly, it is easy to male and secondly, the taste is more intense than the “boiled” version. So, I find myself cooking a variety of vegetables in the oven at least once a week – they make fabulous impromptu salads, as well as being great when added to soups, stews, casseroles, tagines, pasta bakes and all manner of other things. I also LOVE the basic roasted vegetable recipe when used in vegetarian shepherd’s pies and lasagne. Once you have made a large batch of this vegetable medley, it keeps for up to three days in the fridge, and is easy to heat up.
The other obvious benefit, apart from being healthy and low in calories, for this recipe, is that is makes a fabulous lunch box meal for school or the office. You can then add salad leaves later, or even heat it up in the office canteen microwave and enjoy it with crusty bread, if calories are not important. This recipe is a VERY low-fat recipe, and in place of the usual litre or so of olive oil, I roasted these with a little water and some sprays of olive oil Fry-Light, a low-fat spray. The trick for;flavour in any low-calorie dish, is for lots of herbs, spices and seasoning, so, don’t go too mad but don’t be afraid of adding the spices to this recipe.
For those of you who are following the 5:2 diet, this recipe is a remarkable 112 calories per serving, and it certainly filled me up today. If calories are not an issue, by all means add a little extra olive oil to this recipe, but, I don’t actually think it needs it. Use any cheese of your choice, but check the calories first; fresh, soft cheeses tend to be lower in calories than mature hard cheeses. I have saved a portion of this vegetable mixture to accompany a French style roast chicken tomorrow, and I shall also be serving it with duck fat roasted potatoes for a veritable FEAST day, and with wine! Have a wonderful weekend, and see you later, Karen