Until last Summer, I didn't have a clue what a julienne peeler looked like! I always loved the look of tiny strands of vegetables if I ate out, or bought a posh stir-fry vegetable medley from Marks and Spencer, but I didn't realise how easy it would be for me to achieve this professional technique at home.
Last year, we went to Brighton for a few days and ate at a fabulous Vietnamese restaurant called PHO. (There are a few branches dotted around the country). We loved it there because all the food was freshly prepared and low fat AND it looked amazing, so pretty. I was really fired up to recreate some dishes inspired by the food I ate there, especially the noodle soup and some of the salads.....which I will share with you in due course.
In the meantime, if you want to transform the look and texture of your salads, try and buy a julienne peeler. I wasn't sure what I was looking for when I went to buy one......I didn't know if it was going to be some expensive, complex electrical gadget with loads of fittings or not. It turned out to be exactly like my trusty potato peeler, only with a jagged blade!
You can see from this photo, that as you drag the peeler along a cucumber, courgette or carrot etc.,you will create beautiful spaghetti-like strands of raw vegetables. I've also found that by making salads in this way, your plate looks fuller and more attractive, plus it's so much easier and more enjoyable to eat large quantities of raw vegetables, instead of having to plough through chunk after chunk of cucumber.
The peeler took a bit of practice- the first few times I used it, the palm of my hand looked like I'd been clawed by a small wild animal, but if you are persistent and careful, you will be really happy with the results.