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Hearty but healthy Friday night food

May 16th 2014 / Katie Robertson Google+ Hearty but healthy Friday night food


Avoid takeaway temptation with this hearty Friday recipe from expert nutritionist Jenna Zoe

After a hard week’s work, there’s nothing you want more on a Friday night than a slap-up takeaway and large glass of red wine. But as summer draws closer, so too does the prospect of heading to the beach and suddenly the annual desire to shift our winter weight skyrockets. As a result, most of us enter the mindset that taste must be banished and celery sticks and dull dishes are the only way forward.

However, here in the GTG office we’re pretty food focused and the idea of bland and boring just doesn't sit right with us.

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So, in a bid to tackle this comfort food conundrum, we’ve turned to health heroine and in-house GTG expert nutritionist Jenna Zoe, to provide us with a gorgeous recipe that will both satisfy the cravings and cut the calories. Speaking to GTG Jenna said:

“The two main challenges people encounter when trying to lose weight is that the food is uninspiring and not filling enough. This Raw Vegan Taco Salad is a favourite dinner of mine and solves the both those problems! Make this one night (or every night) when you're preparing to look your best. You'll notice I haven't used any salt in this recipe either, in order to get the best de-bloating results."

Raw Vegan Taco Salad

Serves 2


For the base of the salad:

1 head chopped romaine lettuce

1 yellow pepper, diced

2 large handfuls cherry tomatoes (I used yellow and orange ones, but you can use heirloom or regular if you can't find yellow), chopped

2 small handfuls alfalfa sprouts

1/4 red onion, diced (optional)

Tomato-mango salsa

2 large tomatoes

Handful cherry tomatoes

1/4 red onion, diced

2 tablespoons olive oil (try extra virgin, which ensures the oil is cold-processed and therefore totally raw)

Juice of half a lemon

1 mango (I used the Indian Alfonso variety, which are in season at this time of year)

To make: Blend all ingredients together to desired consistency.


3 avocados

Juice of 2 limes

1/4 red onion, diced

1/2 bunch coriander

To make: Place the flesh of the avocados in a bowl with the rest of the ingredients and mash together with a fork until well incorporated, but still chunky

Artichoke 'meat'

250 grams artichoke hearts (we're just using the centre of the vegetable for this recipe, so you can discard the petals or eat them later)

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 clove pressed garlic

A few sprigs flat parsley, to taste

Juice of half a lemon

To make: blend all ingredients together until very smooth. I recommend using a food processor instead of a blender to make this meat.


Start by dividing the base ingredients for your salads into two large bowls. Top each salad with a generous portion of the salsa, the guacamole and the artichoke meat, and feast!

If you are trying a raw diet but want to keep some animal protein, you could also replace the artichoke meat with a simple tuna ceviche made by combining finely diced tuna or yellowtail with lots of lemon and lime juice, some coriander, chopped spring onions (and if you want to take it to the next level, a dash of coconut milk!).

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