I love M&S food. They are nailing the gluten-free thing, offering creative alternatives to grains that don’t just assume the uninspiring fallback positions we see in other supermarkets. They also have gluten free sandwiches, which I’m yet to try, but I’m impressed to see them on the shelves. One of my favourite grain-free treats from M&S is their nutty wholefood salad. It’s basically cooked quinoa and spelt, with a bunch of raw carrot, green beans, broccoli stalks and peas, jam-packed with nuts. Sadly those nuts include cashews and pistachios. The soy and ginger dressing, though delicious, is loaded with glucose syrup and honey. This meal is not a low FODMAP option.
I have endeavoured to recreate this beauty so that the fodmappers of the world too can enjoy it. If I do say so myself, it’s a convincing imposter. It kept beautifully for three days and was great at work as it’s super filling.
Makes 3 big helpings.
You will need:
a good handful green beans, chopped into smallish chunks
1 x cup garden peas (defrosted if frozen)
1 x carrot, thinly sliced, spiralised or julienned
1 x cup almonds
1/2 cup walnuts
For the dressing:
1/3 cup x tbsp soy sauce
1 x tbsp walnut oil
1/2 x tbsp lime juice
1 x thumb ginger, minced
1 x tsp brown sugar
Pop the quinoa on to cook, meanwhile you can prep your veggies and dressing. I would advise keeping your veggies quite small in this, and you also might want to chop up the almonds and walnuts roughly, into halves / thirds. Mix the dressing and taste it to see if you need more acid or more oil. I’m not as precise in the kitchen as I should be and tend to make my dressings to taste. This doesn’t use the 3 parts oil: 1 part acid ratio though as walnut oil has a very strong flavour. This dressing is zingy and marries really well with the nutty flavours in the quinoa.
Next time you have a moment of frustration when checking the label of something you really want to eat to find it’s not low FODMAP, don’t despair. Instead, make a mental note of what it contains, so that next time you’re in the kitchen you can have a go at making something delicious that works for you. This dressing didn’t need glucose syrup and it’s better for us without. The M&S version doesn’t have walnuts in but personally I think they add more than the cashews and pistachios did. Use what’s on the shelves or in recipe books as a springboard to inspire your own low FODMAP dishes – you’ll be surprised at how quickly you become a creative cook… if you aren’t one already!