Advertisement

Winter jewels bento recipe with kale, red cabbage, carrots, orange and ginger

  • 2 bento

Brighten up a winter's day with this winter bento salad recipe by Sara Kiyo Popowa

Winter salad bento recipe

“This bento’s bright colours and sweet flavours, and the power of cold-weather-resistant kale and parsnip should cheer up any grey day,” Sara says.

“You can choose to make the salad in the evening and let it marinate overnight in a mixing bowl, or you can pack it in your bento box right after you’ve made it. It gets more and more delicious the longer the flavours merge. With roasted hazelnuts and protein-rich quinoa you’re set up for a good afternoon!”

Advertisement

Ingredients

  • Kale leaves 50g
  • Red cabbage 50g, finely shredded
  • Small parsnip 1/2, peeled and cut into thin half-moons
  • Small carrot 1, peeled and cut into thin discs
  • dates 30g (about 4), finely chopped
  • Orange 1, scrubbed and halved
  • fresh ginger 2cm piece
  • Sea salt 1/2 tsp

To assemble (per bento)

  • Prepared quinoa 1 portion
  • Hazelnuts 1 tbsp, toasted
  • Saltwater nuts and seeds 1-2 tbsp, or toasted almonds
  • Furikake 1 tsp, (optional)
  • Pomegranate seeds to taste

Method

For the salad

  • Step 1

    To make the salad, rip the kale leaves off their stems and roughly chop the leaves. Unless the stalks are very dry and fibrous, chop them too, very finely, and add both the leaves and stalks either to a mixing bowl or a sturdy plastic bag, along with the rest of the salad veggies and dates.

     

  • Step 2

    Squeeze the juice of half the orange into the mix and finely grate a little orange zest in, too. Save the second half to use later.

  • Step 3

    Finely grate the ginger and hand-squeeze it over the salad mix to extract the juice (discard the pulp). Add the salt and gently massage the mix with your hands, until quite a lot of juice is released. If using a bag, remove all the air and massage through the bag (wash and reuse the bag afterwards).

     

  • Step 4

    Either pack the salad in your box straight away or store in a glass container with a lid in the fridge. The more tightly packed (less air) salads like this one are stored, the better they will marinate (and slower they will spoil), so use the smallest storage container it will fit into.

To assemble

  • Step 1

    Make a bed, or slope, of quinoa in your box. Arrange the salad on top, making sure to add all of its marinating juice, too.

  • Step 2

    Use a sharp knife to peel and cut the remaining half orange into bite-sized pieces, and top the salad with it.

  • Step 3

    Add the nuts (or pack the nuts in a separate small container to scatter over before eating).

  • Step 4

    Finish with furikake and pomegranate, if using. Close your box and pack in a bento bag or furoshiki with a fork or chopsticks.

Bento Power cover

This recipe is from Bento Power by Sara Kiyo Popowa (Kyle Books, £18.99)

Advertisement