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Hetty McKinnon, cookbook author and creator of Peddler Journal, loves salads. Sure, salads aren’t what you might consider the most glamorous of foods, but Hetty’s here to invariably change your mind. The Australian native is what you’d call a salad connoisseur: Back in 2011, she began a humble salad delivery service in Sydney, dreaming up plant-based salads that she’d tuck into the back of her bicycle and deliver to friends and neighbors in her neighborhood. She called this project Arthur Street Kitchen because her personal kitchen was housed on Arthur Street.

Related Reading: Gail Simmons’ Spaghetti Pie Is Comfort Food at Its Finest

As her community grew more and more fond of the camaraderie of sharing salads, Hetty repackaged her salad making into her first cookbook, “Community,” which brims with 60 vegetarian salad recipes—none of which you’d dare call a sad desk lunch. On the heels of a successful first book, Hetty launched a second called “Neighborhood,” bound by a slew of more veggie-forward recipes like chargrilled eggplant with lentils and shredded collard greens with baked sweet potatoes. 

Family: New Vegetarian Comfort Food to Nourish Every Day, $15.69 on Amazon

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Most recently, Hetty published a third installment in her vegetarian series: “Family.” Recipes here are geared toward becoming classic, oft-repeated dishes in your home, like miso brown butter pasta and sticky banana golden syrup dumplings. Hetty’s recipes are straightforward, easy to follow, and always make plant-based dishes shine in the spotlight. 

Luisa Brimble

Don’t believe us? Then test out Hetty’s recipe for halloumi, kale, and mint gozleme, a Turkish street food that’s quite popular in Australia. A soft flatbread, gozleme are often stuffed with a variety of cheese, spinach, or meat, but Hetty’s version relies on grated halloumi and sautéed kale wrapped up in a malleable yogurt-based dough. The entire thing is sealed and crimped, then cooked on both sides until golden brown.

For more on Hetty and her passion for all things salads, download Chowhound’s podcast Table Talk, the final episode of the season. After simply hearing Hetty discuss how creative salads can be, we promise you’ll never suffer from a sad desk lunch again.

Excerpt from Family By Hetty McKinnon (Prestel, 2019).

Halloumi, Kale, and Mint Gozleme Recipe

At Australian urban markets and street fairs, a familiar aroma often imbues the air – the scent of sizzling gozleme. Gozleme is a traditional Turkish street food that is ubiquitous in Australia – these addictive flatbreads are filled with cheese and spinach (or meat), sealed, and then cooked over a griddle. They are my market favourite. My gozleme recipe is made with an extremely simple yoghurt dough, which can be used as a blank canvas for any number of fillings. Melty cheeses with a green leafy veg work very well, as do pan-fried mushrooms with a fresh soft cheese like ricotta or chevre. If you’re after a hearty dessert, fill with nutella and banana, or sautéed apples with salted caramel. I like to cook it on the barbecue, but I’ve also made it in a sandwich press, on a stove-top griddle, or just in a frying pan.

Tip: Self-raising flour is known as ‘self-rising flour’ in the US. You can easily make your own by combining 150 g (1 cup) of plain flour with 1 ½ teaspoons of baking powder and ½ teaspoon of salt.

Halloumi, Kale, and Mint Gozleme

Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Yoghurt dough: 11 oz (300 g) Greek yoghurt
  • Sea salt
  • 3 cups (3 cups) self-raising flour
  • Filling: Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch kale, stems removed
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 9 oz (250 g) haloumi cheese, grated
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • Handful of mint leaves, torn
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • Melted butter or extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
  • 1 lemon, cut into 4 wedges
Instructions
  1. For the dough, place the yoghurt in a large bowl and stir through a big pinch of salt. When combined, gradually add the flour, a few tablespoons at a time, until you have a stiff dough. Bring everything together in the bowl before turning it out onto a floured bench. Using your hands, knead the dough until it is soft and slightly tacky. Place into a lightly floured bowl, cover with a clean tea towel and allow to stand for at least 30 minutes.
  2. To make the filling, warm a frying pan over a medium heat. Add a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil, toss in the kale and garlic, and season with a pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Cook for 2–3 minutes until the kale is wilted. Take the pan off the heat and allow to cool. Once cool enough to handle, chop the kale leaves roughly, then add them to the grated halloumi cheese, shallots and fresh mint. Season with sea salt and black pepper, and mix well to combine.
  3. Divide the dough into 4 equal balls. On a floured surface, roll each ball into a 20–25 cm circle. Place some filling on one side of the circle and fold the dough over. Seal the edges with a fork (or crimp, if you feel like it!). Repeat until you have used all the dough.
  4. Place a large frying pan on medium–low heat. Brush both sides of the gozleme with melted butter or olive oil and cook on both sides until golden.
  5. To serve, cut each gozleme into 3 slices and finish with a good squeeze of lemon juice (I love lots of lemon on my gozleme).

Header image by Luisa Brimble.

Amy Schulman is an associate editor at Chowhound. She is decidedly pro-chocolate.
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