This colourful salad makes a tasty accompaniment to seafood, chicken or lamb, or it can be served as part of a Mediterranean starter selection, with ciabatta bread or baguette. Peppers are an excellent source of vitamin C, and when roasted they still retain substantial amounts of this important vitamin.
For a roasted red pepper and onion salad to serve 4, quarter and seed 4 red peppers and put them in a baking dish with 4 small red onions, quartered. Drizzle over 1½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil and season to taste. Roast in a preheated 200ºC (400ºF, gas mark 6) oven for about 35 minutes, turning once, until the vegetables are tender and browned around the edges. Cool, then peel the peppers, if wished, holding them over the baking dish. Whisk 2 tsp lemon juice with 1½ tbsp extra virgin olive oil in a salad bowl and season to taste. Add 115 g (4 oz) rocket or mixed red salad leaves and toss to coat. Pile the peppers and onions on top and drizzle over their cooking juices. * For an Oriental-style pepper and Chinese leaf salad to serve 4, seed and thinly slice 2 red peppers (or 1 red and 1 yellow pepper) and 1 fresh red chilli. Mix in a salad bowl with 150 g (5½ oz) shredded Chinese leaves. For the dressing, whisk together 1 tbsp rice vinegar, 1 tsp toasted sesame oil, 2 tsp groundnut oil and 1 tsp soy sauce. Drizzle over the vegetables and toss to coat. Sprinkle with 2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds and serve.
Herbalists recommend basil as a natural tranquilliser. It is also believed to aid digestion, ease stomach cramps and help to relieve the headaches associated with colds. * Olives are a source of vitamin E, although they are usually not eaten in large enough quantities to make a significant contribution to the diet.
Excellent source of niacin, vitamin A, vitamin B1, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin E. Good source of folate.