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Garden Day: 3 quick recipes you can make with ingredients from the garden

Ultimate veggie burger. Picture: Supplied

Ultimate veggie burger. Picture: Supplied

Published Oct 17, 2021


October 17 is National Garden Day!

On this day, South Africans across the country are set to celebrate their unique green spaces and gardens in every shape and size.

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National Garden Day is a chance for people across the country to down tools and celebrate their gardens.

Everyone can take part, regardless of the size of their gardens – rolling lawns, potted window sills, urban rooftops, and patio planters – all are welcome.

To celebrate, Garden Day has enlisted a crew of enthusiastic amateur and professional gardeners to help inspire others.

Legendary home chef and home gardener, Mogau Seshoene – also known as The Lazy Makoti – is looking forward to sharing the day with her family.

As always, the symbol for Garden Day is a flower crown and Seshoene is just one of this year’s Garden Day ambassadors who will be wearing this crown.

She tells us that she will be pulling out all the stops for a family celebration.

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“We will be wearing home-made flower crowns and I will prepare a herb rainbow couscous salad, using fresh ingredients from the garden for everyone to enjoy as we toast this special day,” says Seshoene.

Below she shares three quick recipes you can make with ingredients from the garden.

Rainbow salad taken from ‘Hosting with The Lazy Makoti: A celebration of food’. Picture: Supplied

Sorghum rainbow salad

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Sorghum is a proudly South African ingredient that’s loved by many. Most of us have had it in ting and mqombothi, but I bet you didn’t know that, much like couscous, you can include it in salads as well.

Serves: 4


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250ml sorghum, soaked overnight, then drained

3 cups water

1 cup cherry tomatoes

1 feta round, crumbled

1 red onion, finely chopped

½ cucumber, chopped

1 cup finely chopped herbs (parsley, chives, dill)

Salt and pepper to taste


In a medium pot, cook the sorghum in the water until soft, about 40 minutes. Drain and leave to cool.

Place the sorghum in a large bowl, along with the tomatoes, feta, onion, cucumber and herbs.

Season well and toss to combine.

Ultimate veggie burger.

Serves: 6


3 tbsp olive oil

½ onion, finely chopped

1 tsp minced garlic

1 tsp turmeric

1 carrot, grated

½ cup finely chopped spinach

½ tin chickpeas, mashed (reserve half for the brine)

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tin cooked lentils, mashed

1 cooked sweet potato, mashed

6 burger buns

½ cup mayonnaise

Lettuce, tomato, red onion,

Pesto for assembling


Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a pan. Add the onion and garlic, and fry on medium heat until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the turmeric and fry until fragrant, 1-2 minutes.

Add the carrot and spinach, along with the reserved chickpea brine. Season with salt and pepper and simmer until done for about 15 minutes.

Add the chickpeas, lentils and sweet potato, and mix well to combine.

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a baking tray.

Using your hands, shape the mixture into 6 burger patties.

Place on a baking tray, brush with oil on each side, and bake for 12 minutes, turning halfway through.

Spread both halves of each bun with mayo. Assemble burgers, layering each patty with lettuce, tomato, onion, and pesto.

Beetroot and fig salad

Serves: 6


2 cups rocket

1 cup cooked cubed beetroot

3 or 4 figs, quartered

¼ cup walnuts

1 feta round

For the dressing:

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp honey

Salt and pepper to taste


Wash the rocket well, pat dry, and place in a serving bowl.

Scatter over the beetroot, figs, and nuts.

Crumble the feta over.

Combine the dressing ingredients and mix well. Drizzle over the salad.