The sun is shining, spring flowers are emerging, and it’s time to wake up the taste buds with some deliciously peppery crisp watercress.
Here are some facts: watercress is a vibrant green aquatic plant related to mustard, broccoli and wasabi. It is rich in protein, vitamin A, C & K, and is a natural source of iron and calcium, vitamin B6, folate and fibre.
Compared with a mixed leaf salad (equal parts spinach, lambs lettuce, cos and iceberg), watercress has nearly six times the amount of vitamin C, more than twice the amount of vitamin K, nearly three times the amount of calcium, and twice the amount of iron.
Move over rocket. Make way for my new mate watercress.
Large handful of watercress (leaves and stems)
2 blood or blush oranges, skin and pith removed, sliced thinly (normal oranges will be fine too)
1 firm-ripe avocado, peeled and sliced
Handful of chopped roasted hazelnuts (skin on, roasted in oven at 160 C conventional/140 fan oven, for 15 mins, then rubbed to remove skins)
Pumpkin seeds (gently toasted in a hot dry pan until they start to pop)
45 ml rice vinegar
1/2 apple (unpeeled), finely grated
4 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Mix together the vinegar, apple, soy sauce, and sugar until the sugar has dissolved, then add the oil.
Just before serving, toss watercress with enough dressing to coat. Add the other ingredients and serve straight away.