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A wholesome touch to Crusoe's on the lake

Crusoe's on the Lake is a restaurant housed in Lake Macquarie's Yacht Club, situated perfectly with waterfront views. When deciding on their Spring menu they asked us to add a fresh touch!

Our take on Spring is vibrant, with fresh flavours from blood orange, fennel, beetroot, shallots, cabbage and pistachios. You can see these touches through the new Spring menu, with this wholesome, seasonal freekeh salad making a delicious appearance.

"As chefs we can sometimes get a little routine and stick to what we know and do best. I think it helps to get inspiration from a variety of sources, and who better than Kerryn. She is a dietician who helps the public prepare great tasting, healthy meals."

The brief the chefs gave us was to create a salad to accompany their confit duck dish and another to be a stand alone meal. The salads had to be seasonal for spring, be nutritious, and be a little different. Just because Crusoe's are doing affordable pub food doesn’t mean they have to do boring side salads all the time.

We suggested to lighten up their confit duck by sitting the duck maryland on a salad of blood orange segments, braised baby fennel, baby rocket and pistachios topped with a raspberry vinaigrette. They were totally sold by this.

The stand alone dish that we created for them was very much 'out of the box,' for the chefs. Now don't let the word ‘salad’ turn you off, this seasonal fresh salad is far from boring! It has been carefully put together to showcase seasonal produce, and provide a balance of key nutrients and flavours to keep you energised for hours after enjoying this aesthetically pleasing dish.

Eating any fruit or vegetable when plentiful and in season will ensure better flavour, and optimal nutritional value, and the roasted beetroot, orange segments, shallots and rocket in this salad do not disappoint. The addition of the ancient grain, freekeh, provides a nutty texture and a boost of low GI carbohydrate, fibre and some plant protein. This protein value is complete with a crunch of roasted hazelnuts and a crumble of salty feta. A dressing of lemon juice, dijon mustard and extra virgin olive oil provides a zesty touch that really complements the earthy flavours of the beetroot and freekeh. The quality extra virgin olive completes this dish, providing the healthy fats and antioxidants responsible for the healthy Mediterranean way.

If you're are in the Newcastle area and totally sold by these wholesome and delicious updates make sure you head to Belmont to dine at Crusoe's on the Lake from September 5th!!

If you own a cafe, restaurant or catering business be sure to get in touch if you would like us to add a fresh touch to your menu.

Happy cooking and eating!