Family gatherings can be such a treat, seriously! I was visiting some family in Washington a few weeks ago, doing the usual pot luck style dinner thing, when I tasted something rather wonderful...
... full of amazing, fresh summer vegetables...
... sweet and crunchy cashews...
... and loads of fresh, summer goodness...
... all swept up in a delightful tahini, I don't even know what, dressing...
... I took a second to look down at what exactly I was eating and it hit me, rainbow salad! Juicy red cherry tomatoes, bright orange carrots, hints of tart, yellow lemon, vibrant green kale, baby greens, and creamy avocado, luscious blueberries, and just enough purple from the finely chopped shallot to round out the spectrum.
Yep, a rainbow in a salad. And if the saying that the more colorful your plate of food is, the healthier it is, is true, this right here is one super healthy salad! The best part? I'm pretty sure most of it came straight out of the garden (thank you Pacific Northwest).
Now the salad above and the recipe below are not the exact salad I ate. My procrastination prevented me from getting the original recipe, but it's what I remember it to be, plus a few of my own ideas thrown in for good measure. A lot of the ingredients in the salad are in season now, which makes it easy to buy/harvest for, and all the more flavorful!
- A few good handfuls of fresh lettuce or baby greens
- 1 bunch Kale (I chose the smoother leaved variety), spines removed and given a medium chop
- 3 medium carrots shredded
- 1 pint blueberries
- 1 pint (less a few) cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1 avocado, diced
- 1/2-1 shallot finely chopped
- 1/2-1 cup chopped cashews
For the Dressing:
- 1 lemon (squeeze in juice to taste)
- 1/2-1 teaspoon white miso paste
- 1-2 teaspoons tahini
- 1/4 cup olive or avocado oil
- 1/4 teaspoon chili garlic sauce
- Soy/Tamari/liquid amino acids to taste
Mix all the salad ingredients minus the lettuce together in a mixing bowl. This recipe makes a lot, so to spread it out and keep it going for a few days, I used half the veggie mixture and added in enough lettuce to make a salad for four (about half the veggie mixture with a third as much greens). That way I don't have to drench all of it in dressing and have it wilt, yay leftovers!
Once the veggies and greens are combined, move on to the dressing. This is a new one for me, so I did a fare bit of finagling. I suggest you do the same. The miso paste can be quite salty, so start with 1/2 a teaspoon. Also the amount of oil you use will determine how thick or thin the dressing will get, so make it how you like it. Go for taste, add a little more of one ingredient here and a little less there. This recipe is basically just a jumping off point. I started with the base, put in a jar with a lid and started shaking, then tasting, adjusting, more shaking, then more tasting (you get the idea). Also, it should make enough that you will still have some dressing for the remaining salad, just make sure to keep it sealed and in the fridge.
Once you have the dressing you like pour it over the salad mixture, toss and enjoy!
With the Kids:
* Last time in Recipes: Ginger Lime Nectarine Tart