Perfect Pumpkin Salad

INGREDIENTS

  • Olive oil, to grease and coat pumpkin
  • 1kg Kent pumpkin, peeled, deseeded, cut into 2-3cm pieces
  • 2 cups long-grain brown rice
  • 1/3 cup pepitas or pumpkin seed kernels (optional)
  • 1/3 cup sunflower seed kernels (optional)
  • 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 small garlic clove, crushed
  • 1/4 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 large bunch of rocket, washed, trimmed, leaves torn

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Lightly grease a large baking tray with olive oil.
  2. Arrange the peeled and cut pumpkin in a single layer, on the prepared tray and rub 1-2 tsp. of olive oil over pumpkin and place in oven. Check on your pumpkin at 30 mins and turn to continue cooking for 30 minutes or until light brown and tender. Remove from oven and set aside for 15 minutes to cool to room temperature.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the rice in a large saucepan of boiling water for 30 minutes or until tender. Once cooked drain in a large colander and set aside for 30 minutes to cool to room temperature.
  4. Reduce oven temperature to 180°C. Spread the pepitas and sunflower seed kernels over a large baking tray. Bake in the oven, stirring halfway through cooking, for 5 minutes or until lightly toasted. Remove from oven and set aside to cool slightly.
  5. Combine the lime juice, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, and sugar in a small bowl. Place the rice in a large bowl. Drizzle with the lime-juice mixture and use a large spoon to stir until well combined.
  6. Add the rocket, pumpkin, pepitas and sunflower seed kernels to the rice mixture and gently stir until well combined—Spoon salad among serving plates and serve immediately.