Archive | January 2015

Stringy Salad with Spicy Asian Vinaigrette

 

Asian Vinaigrette

You have heard me rant about eating salads in the wintertime. This is a salad that I actually look forward to at this time of year. It’s loaded with crunchy-type vegetables whose freshness doesn’t get compromised in the winter and it’s an easy way to overload on raw vegetables at a time when you’re craving slow cooked comfort foods.

Any hard vegetables would work, but the combination that I love is: green cabbage, zucchini, radishes, shallots, and carrots. Even more exciting than the combination of veggies is the fun stringiness! There’s something thrilling about being able to twirl a salad. The stringiness also let’s me enjoy radishes, a root vegetable I consider extremely boring.

It is all tied together with a spicy Asian vinaigrette with a hint of sweetness and hit of ginger that takes this salad over the top. Finished with chopped roasted peanuts, fresh coriander, and black sesame seeds, it’s a crunchy, medley of veggie heaven. Served with a side of tofu, it’s as low carb as I get and a quick weeknight meal.

Here’s hoping to spice things up in 2015. Happy new year everyone!

Serves 4

Ingredients:

 Salad:
 Cabbage, green, shredded  4 cups
 Zucchini, large, julienned  2
 Carrots, large, spiralled  2
 Radish, large, spiralled  1 (or 3 small)
 Shallot, sliced thinly  1/4
 Coriander, fresh, chopped
 Peanuts, chopped, roasted  1/2 cup
 Sesame seeds, black
Vinaigrette:
 Sesame oil, pure  1 tbsp
 Canola oil  1 tbsp
 Lime juice  2.5 tbsp
 Hot sauce  1 tbsp
 Tamari  2 tsp
 Garlic, clove, minced  1
 Ginger, fresh, grated  2 tsp
 Maple syrup  2 tbsp
 Tofu:
 Tofu, soft  2 lbs
 Canola oil
 Tamari  2 tbsp

1. Prepare vegetables. Thinly slice the cabbage and shallot. Use spiral cutter to cut carrots and radish into long, stringy spirals. Use a julienne-type kitchen contraption to cut zucchini (not inner seedy flesh) into long, thin strips.

2. To toast the peanuts, over medium heat in a small sautee pan, heat nuts stirring often. It only takes 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and roughly chop once cooled.

3. For the vinaigrette, in a small bowl, combine vinaigrette ingredients.

4. For the tofu, slice the tofu into bite-sized cubes. Cover a large frying pan with a thin layer of canola oil. Heat pan over medium heat and add tofu cubes. Cook until golden on all sides. Remove from heat and toss in a couple tablespoons of tamari and prepared vinaigrette.

5. To assemble, place all shredded and sliced vegetables in a large bowl, mixing to ensure they are well-combined. Toss with vinaigrette (there will be vinaigrette left over so taste as you add vinaigrette). Sprinkle with chopped coriander, toasted peanuts, and black sesame seeds. Divide the salad between 4 plates and serve with 10-12 cubes of dressed tofu on the side.