This will be my starter course for Tandy’s ‘Come Dine With Me’ challenge. It’s a dish that my friends always enjoy. I was going to do something more adventurous, but as my main course will be quite challenging, I thought I would stick with what I know for the starter.

It is actually three salads in one and all three can be prepared the day before, kept in the fridge and tossed together just before serving.


4 avocados

Juice of 2 lemons

1 teaspoon minced garlic

Salt, black pepper & cayenne pepper to taste

Blend into a smooth mixture and refrigerate in an airtight container.



2 cucumbers, shaved into wide ribbons (use a potato peeler) excluding seeds

1 tablespoon caster sugar

2 ½ tablespoons rice vinegar

1 green chilli, finely chopped

Mix caster sugar into vinegar until dissolved, add chillis and pour over cucumbers.

Refrigerate in an airtight container.


1kg cleaned and steamed prawns

2 mandarins, peeled and chopped


Salt & pepper

2 red chillis, thinly sliced

½ cup of olive oil and ½ cup of mandarin juice, blitzed with the pulp of 1 mandarin

Juice of 1 lime

1 teaspoon minced ginger

Gently mix all ingredients and refrigerate in an airtight container.


To serve: On a large platter, place a layer of leafy greens; (basil, coriander, baby spinach and dill, etc) dot with the cucumber ribbons, the guacamole and then the prawns. Toss to mix at the table before serving.

(For a more elegant event, serve in individual cocktail glasses.)

Serves 8.




    • from
      Caster sugar is a fine grind of sugar which is used by bartenders and bakers, among others, for its quick dissolving properties. It is also sometimes seen spelled as castor sugar, and it may be labeled as “superfine sugar” as well. Much like regular table sugar, caster sugar can come in both refined and unrefined forms. Many grocery suppliers sell caster sugar, which can be replaced in recipes with partly ground conventional sugar if it cannot be obtained.

  1. Man, I really must get to Jo’burg one day (or make that one week!) just to sample your cooking, wine and chat up a storm. Will keep all my wobbly bits crossed that you will be the winner of the challenge Cin xxx

  2. Pingback: Come Dine With Me Challenge – Results « Lavender and Lime

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