Each week, Wendyl Nissen takes a packaged food item and decodes what the label tells you about its contents

I've had my eye on these pre-prepared salads for a while because they seem like such a good idea.

A healthy salad to grab on the run and eat for lunch or dinner as a side dish.

Recently, this one has been turning up regularly in my fridge and all evidence points to the teenager in the house eating them.


Cooked couscous (48%) [water, durum wheat, semolina] - Couscous is often mistaken for a grain but is actually more like tiny balls of pasta made out of semolina and water then sprinkled with flour.


Pumpkin (18%) - This is roasted.

Feta (9%) [cow's milk, cultures, salt, vegetable rennet] - This is a deliciously salty curd cheese which is traditionally made out of sheep or goat's milk but in this case is made out of cow's milk.


Dried cranberries (4%) [cranberries, sugar, sunflower oil] - Good to see the ingredients used in dried cranberries listed here.

• Orange juice

• Olive oil

• Brown sugar

Pinenuts (1%) - These are the edible seeds of a particular pine tree which are quite expensive, which is probably why there are only a few in here.

Balsamic vinegar [wine vinegar, concentrated and cooked grape must] - A staple in dressings now this is made out of wine vinegar but also grape juice which has been pressed (must).

Ground cumin

Ground coriander


Ground fennel





Orange zest
My recommendations

What a lovely column this was to write. I didn't have to get out my additives dictionary once to decipher the codes used on ingredients labels.

In this little pottle you will get a massive 19 ingredients which are all real food. And you can tell it's real food because the best before date is only a week from when you bought it.

Real food goes off quickly. Food with preservatives sits on the shelves for ages.

This salad is also about 350 calories or 1437.9 kilojoules which makes it a good lunch or part of a main dinner meal.

Yes, paying $5 for a bit of salad can seem expensive but for the time it would take me to roast the pumpkin, cook the couscous, find feta, cranberries, pinenuts and all the condiments I think I would rather pay someone else to do it and enjoy a healthy meal for my $5.

Making salads like this always seems like a great idea but they can be fussy and you do need to source a lot of ingredients first, and then there's the chopping.

This is a great easy solution for grab-and-go lunches or any meal.


• All real food, not additives.

• For $5 someone else finds the ingredients and makes it for you.

• About 350 calories or 1437.9 kilojoules.

Do you have a food product you would like to feature in Wendyl Wants to Know? Email her at wendylwantstoknow@gmail.com with your suggestions. Unfortunately, Wendyl cannot correspond directly with readers.