September 30, 2020 5 min read
There are only 3 of us in my small blended family and my daughter is 12 going on 36! I was born in Malaysia and my Chinese heritage has formed the basis of my culinary taste buds. I have however now lived in Australia longer than I have in Southeast Asia so I have a big repertoire of favourite things to eat. Living in Melbourne allows me to hone in on so many different cuisines and exciting produce.
We are consummate home cooks and rarely eat out or get takeaway. My partner loves to cook too but what we like to make is very different to me so we have a great partnership in the kitchen. My daughter is a bit of a foodie and will eat anything from simple hot dogs to escargot.
We love to travel and it is a really important part of who we are. We like mixing up cultural experiences with nature and super fun modern-day activities. We also love socialising. We spend a lot of time throwing casual dinners to milestone events for our family and friends simply because we love to create special moments for the people we love.
Salads have always struggled to come to the forefront because it is inevitably always associated with eating healthy. For those who decided to go on a bit of a raw movement of literally just leaves on a plate in an attempt to lose weight or detox, hasn’t done the salad any favours.
Salad is also the one dish on the dinner table that doesn’t get a lot of love. Any home cook would always try and master the main dish or perhaps the ensuing dessert. But the salad never gets that attention perhaps because we've already put so much effort on the other components. What happens then is the salad is always pretty much the same with very little creativity. Who can continue to eat lettuce, tomatoes and cucumber every day? It’s no wonder the kids and teens refuse to eat it. I would too!
Getting teens to embrace salad requires a little creativity and a better sell is required. Just as you can’t have a basic leaf salad every night, you can’t have potato salad every night either. The salads we create are incredibly diverse, using fun ingredients, a multitude of textures and flavours in the one dish and range from super easy to really fancy.
"Getting teens to embrace salad requires
a little creativity and a better sell is required."
My love for salads only started when I migrated to Australia and when I started cooking. Growing up in Southeast Asia, salads were not staple dishes. I grew up on laksa noodles and chilli crabs.
When I became more independent and I learnt to cook Western meals, I became more creative with my salads. I also come from a culture of a ton of potluck parties and I entertain family and friends on a regular basis so naturally, my salad repertoire just expanded over time.
Why is eating salad so important?I create salads because they are delicious, not because I am on a healthy kick. And I feel that if I were to serve up a leg of lamb, it needs accompaniments. Much like Batman can’t live without Robin, main dishes simply would be incomplete without a salad.
"Much like Batman can't live without Robin,
main dishes simply would be incomplete without a salad."
That is such a difficult question! That’s like asking me to choose my favourite child! To best answer this question would probably be the one salad that I am continuously asked to make over and over again by family and friends. The one salad that my daughter is the biggest fan of, my Purple Cauliflower Salad with Lemon Mustard Tahini.
What are your 3 top tips to making salad enticing for the family?#1 / Change of mindset.
The Devil Wears Salad, a website filled with amazing salad recipes and droolworthy images and share a love for salad and entertaining!