Easy dinner recipes: Refreshing salad options for Meatless Monday

Easy dinner recipes: Refreshing salad options for Meatless Monday
A refreshing summer salad from The Hungry Cat.
Recipe: Tomato and watermelon salad
(Anne Cusack / Los Angeles Times)

Keep cool and vegetarian this Meatless Monday with these refreshing salad recipes:

The Hungry Cat's tomato and watermelon salad: Take everything you love about summer and arrange it beautifully on a plate. Juicy heirloom tomato wedges and bright chunks of cool watermelon come together perfectly, punctuated with the spice of arugula, fresh basil and mint.

Cool rice and cucumber salad: When we want to bring out the best in rice, cook it like pasta in a big pot of water. As Food editor Russ Parsons notes, this makes for grains that are light and separate, not sticking or clumped together. For a refreshing salad idea, toss the cooled grains with cucumber and a bright, tangy dressing. The dish can be made ahead of time and chilled until ready to serve.

Mendocino Farms' curried couscous with roasted cauliflower: This brightly colorful and refreshing couscous salad from Mendocino Farms is a perfect way to celebrate warmer weather any time of the year. You can find the recipe below



Total time: 50 minutes | Serves 10

1 (1-pound) box Israeli couscous or orzo
1 head cauliflower, florets broken into pieces
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 tablespoon turmeric
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, more to taste
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, more to taste
3 tablespoons light brown sugar, more to taste
3 tablespoons oil
2 small carrots, peeled, finely diced
1 cup vegan mayonnaise (or mayonnaise)
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
1/2 lime, juiced

1. Cook the couscous according to the instructions on the package. Rinse in cold water, drain well, put in a bowl and set aside. Heat the oven to 450 degrees.

2. In a separate bowl, toss the cauliflower with the curry powder, turmeric, cumin, coriander, salt, cayenne, brown sugar and oil. Spread out on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet and roast in the oven until cauliflower is browned around the edges but still crunchy, about 10 minutes. Remove just the cauliflower and put it in the bowl with the pasta.

3. On the same rimmed baking sheet, place the carrots and, using a spatula, toss the carrots with the leftover spices and oil. Roast the carrots until brown around the edges but still crunchy, about 8 minutes. (If you find that the spices and oil are a little overly browned from roasting the cauliflower, toss the carrots using the same proportion of new spices, salt, sugar and oil.) Add to the couscous.

4. Fold in the vegan mayonnaise, cilantro and lime juice with the pasta. Taste, and adjust spices and seasoning if desired. Refrigerate, covered, until ready to serve.

Each serving: Calories 390; protein 7 grams; carbohydrates 46 grams; fiber 4 grams; fat 19 grams; saturated fat 3 grams; cholesterol 0; sugar 5 grams; sodium 513 mg.