The other night I took my eight-year-old daughter out to dinner at a famous sit-down restaurant. We were super hungry and thought about getting an appetizer, but there was nothing under 900 calories! So we opted to have a side salad. We got it with no cheese (for the love of Pete, stopping putting cheddar cheese on a salad), but the dressing she chose had honey and eggs. She loved it and asked if we could make some at home. To please my veggie-loving baby, I got straight to work.
I found a copycat recipe and worked off of that. WOW, there was a lot of sugar and oil in that bad boy! I mean, aren’t salads supposed to be healthy? I kicked out four tablespoons of sugar and two tablespoons of unnecessary vegetable oil. This recipe is yummy. If you’re oil-free, you will want to skip this one, but you could easily sub a plain vegan yogurt. If you do this, cut the milk. Otherwise, your dressing will be too runny.
Agave nectar was an excellent choice to replace sugar and honey. It is four times sweeter than regular table sugar, but it is low on the glycemic index. Frankly, you could even start with two tablespoons of nectar and add more to suit your taste. Coming in at 100 calories per serving, this dressing is a keeper! I used it in a kale salad with strawberries and caramelized rhubarb, and it was divine!
This bowl is easy and delicious! And as with most bowls, You can make it in a variety of ways. I loved the tofu in this one and made a little extra to nosh on later! This recipe is an adaptation of a New York Times recipe, and the only thing I swapped was the honey for the agave nectar. I know some vegans who still eat honey, but I prefer to leave my bee friends alone! I also cut the oil by 2/3, mixed the sriracha and honey to make a glaze, and then tossed in the tofu.
This flavor bomb that can be ready in under 20 minutes! Great for a quick and hearty meal! Enjoy!
1(14-ounce) package extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2 tablespoons Agave nectar, or maple syrup, for serving
In a small saucepan, combine the quinoa with 3/4 cup water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover and cook over medium-low until the water is absorbed, 10 to 12 minutes. Turn off the heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Fluff it with a fork.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, miso, mirin, sesame oil, 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil and 1/2 teaspoon sriracha. Stir in the ginger.
Add the kale, massage it with the dressing and set aside to marinate. Spoon the cooked quinoa onto the kale and toss to coat.
In a nonstick skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil over medium. When the oil shimmers, cook the tofu, turning occasionally, until crisp on all sides, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to absorb any excess oil.
In a medium-size bowl, mix 2 tablespoons of agave nectar and 1 tablespoon of sriracha together until combine. Add tofu and coat well.
The salad is almost too pretty to eat. Every time I make it, I just want to stare at it or take pictures of it.
Not only does it come together quickly, but it is also very hearty and satisfying. The creamy plant-based goat cheese alone is to die for! Trust me. This salad could be a meal in itself. As for the pomegranate, I prefer to clean my own. It’s a task that my youngest daughter has taken over. She finds it deeply satisfying to pull out every last aril!
I like the arugula and pomegranate for color, but you can use various fruits and greens to achieve your Christmas colors. My favorite addition to the salad, and one that I would not skip, is the fresh dill weed. No matter the toppings used, the dill brings it together!