Lunch suffers from classic middle child syndrome. Everyone is always carrying on about breakfast or dinner, or worse brunch. In between all of this, lunch is often skipped, allowing us to recover from the previous meal or make room for the next. To me, this is the saddest thing of all, because lunch has the potential to be the best meal of the day.
My obsession with lunch really blossomed in primary school. I had a lunch box with the letters of my name embossed on it. I demanded the larger, boxier lunch box, as I suspected owning this would mean I would be the recipient of more food. And? I was right.
In prep I was a salad sandwich kind of girl, by grade one I demanded the addition of sun dried tomatoes to my lunchtime staple (don’t judge, it was the height of the 1990s gourmet revival). By the time grade two rolled around I was deep in the throes of lunchtime experimentation, even adding leftover meatballs to ciabatta rolls. (The key was to ensure that the bread was perfectly soggy with sauce, while the exterior crust remained crunchy.)
Now in adult life, the lunchtime ritual continues. Our office is based in Collingwood, where there is no shortage of lunch options. However, only very rarely will I hit the pavement to spend my grown up tuckshop money. I am one of those nerds who still brings their lunch to work pretty much everyday. To me, making my daily lunch is one of life’s small pleasures, and the premise behind this month’s Tasty Tuesday series.
I like to call this first recipe my ‘Start-of-the-week-full-of-optimism-salad’. Translation: Prepare this on a Sunday night when the fridge is full, and 60 Minutes is on in the background.
I roast the cauliflower on a Sunday night, so when I wake up bedraggled on a Monday morning it is ready to go. I then take the accompanying ingredients to work and stockpile the fridge for the next few days.
This salad is really easy to make and really good looking. If you take a strategically cropped Instagram snap of it on your desk, people might think you’re the type of sophisticated person who spend $20 on micro-herb salads, when in truth you cobbled it together in the pocket-sized work kitchen.