Nigella’s salmon, avocado, watercress and pumpkin seed salad

I saw this lovely recipe when I was absent-mindedly watching Simply Nigella on iPlayer and immediately knew I had to try it. Wonderfully, of course, it also happens to already be FODMAP-friendly! I already had salmon, spring onions (obviously) and avocado in the fridge from my weekly Aldi shop- all I had to do was pick up some pumpkin seeds, watercress and a lime and set to work. The result: a wonderfully fresh salad, perfect for a light, low-FODMAP dinner in springtime. It’s full of good fats and protein to help keep you full despite being carb-free. I imagine it would work well with quinoa or brown rice if you did want something a little more filling

This recipe is from Nigella’s website (with some minor FODMAP medic adaptations) and you can find it here. Happy cooking!

To serve two or one light dinner and one next-day lunch to take to work


2 salmon fillets

2 spring onions (green only!)

1 tsp black peppercorns or a generous amount of ground black pepper

2 1/2 tsp lime juice (failing that, lemon works too)

1/2-1 tsp salt (Nigella says 2 tsp but I think it’s always best not to have too much salt in your diet)


3 tbsp pumpkin seeds

100g watercress (if you’re not a fan – substitute half for spinach if you prefer)

1 tsp apple cider vinegar (the celebs swear by this to aid digestion)

1 small ripe avocado

1 tbsp rapeseed or extra virgin olive oil

pinch of sea salt – to taste i.e. don’t add just by default


MAKE the salmon

  • Place the salmon skin side down in a small frying pan
  • Cover with cold water and turn the heat on
  • Add in the whole green spring onions, lime, salt and pepper(corns)
  • Bring to the boil, uncovered
  • Once bubbling, turn the salmon over, take the pan off the heat and set aside for 7 minutes (I found it wasn’t quite cooked through after 7 minutes – probably my crappy student hobs – and just put it back on the heat for a few more minutes)
  • Take the salmon out of the pan and set aside (discarding the spring onions)

Nigella recommends having the salmon cold – i.e. leaving it for an hour or so – but I quite enjoyed it warm. Depending on which you prefer, you can either get cracking on the pumpkin seed salad whilst the salmon is poaching or wait until it’s nearly cooled.

MAKE the salad

  • Toast the pumpkin seeds in a dry pan. Nigella describes with delight how they pop and jump about – don’t leave them too much longer once they start to do this
  • Put the watercress or other leaves into a bowl and add the cider vinegar, tossing to mix
  • Remove the skin from the salmon and break into bite-sized pieces into the bowl
  • Spoon the avocado flesh into the mix, along with the oil and half the pumpkin seeds
  • Toss well to mix all the ingredients before splitting the salad into two bowls or one bowl and one tupperware
  • Top with the remaining pumpkin seeds and enjoy!


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