Thai Cashew Chopped Salad with Ginger Peanut Dressing

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So, remember that Sweet Thai Chili Peanut Butter from Sprelly. This salad was the recipe I finally picked out to use it. I didn’t end up making the pad thai as I was having a hard time getting over fish sauce. Silly? Possibly. I just can’t get my mind over adding fish sauce to anything. Have you smelled it by itself?

But this? This salad and the dressing were both awesome. In fact, we had enough salad for 4 meals, but only enough dressing for two. My husband was eating it with a spoon. That said, I am excited about the possibilities for this recipe. It was fresh. Light. Simple. Fast. Sounds like the perfect summer meal, and I’m sure we will end up making it all summer.

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The salad itself is just chopping vegetables. I did use actual heads of romaine lettuce, but I’m sure you could swap out prepared salad mix to make it slightly quicker. I mixed the dressing in a small bowl using just a whisk, but you could probably also add this to a blender (or even a smoothie cup) if you wanted to make it easier too.

If you never use ginger, my tip is to buy a piece and freeze it. Then when it is time to make the dressing, you can just peel it and use it on a microplane while frozen. My last tip. Don’t skip the salted cashews (and the salt is key)!

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Enjoy!

(Printable Recipe)

Thai Cashew Chopped Salad with Ginger Peanut Dressing
From The Recipe Critic

Ingredients:
2 heads Romaine lettuce, rinsed and chopped
1/2 head red cabbage, chopped
15-20 sliced baby carrots
1/2 cup frozen edamame, thawed
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
3 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup salted cashews

Ginger Peanut Dressing:
1/3 cup sweet thai chili peanut butter (see Sprelly)
2 Tbsp. honey
3 Tbsp. fresh grated ginger
2 Tbsp. rice vinegar
2 tsp. sesame oil
water to thin (I used about 2 Tbsp)

In a small bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, honey, ginger, rice vinegar, and sesame oil. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until you reach your desired consistency. Set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the salad ingredients through the green onions. Toss. Top with the cashews and dressing.

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Grain Salad with Oil-Free Orange Ginger Dressing

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Since I have been blogging, one of the areas where I have really branched out as far as food is concerned is grains. A couple years ago, I would have gone ‘huh’ at anything more exotic than brown rice. I am glad that we’ve expanded our world of grains because different variations on grain salads have become one of our favorite quick meals. Perfect for lunches or a lighter dinner.

The idea for this salad is straight from Oh She Glows. On her post, Angela mentions that she had something similar from Whole Foods and had to re-create it at home. It is completely grains, veggies, and a little bit of juice, and is quite delicious! One of the things in this salad that I had never tried before was wheat berries. I was able to find them in a regional store that sells lots of things in bulk, and they have to be my new favorite grain. In the recipe, the wheat berries are not cooked completely through. Only enough to make them chewy, and I am completely enamored with the texture they add to this salad! Try it out. Enjoy! 

Grain Salad with Oil-Free Orange Ginger Dressing

Ingredients:

1 cup uncooked wheat berries
2 cups water
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1-1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 cup shelled edamame
1 cup diced carrots (about 2 large carrots)
1 large red bell pepper, diced
1 large green bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
kosher salt, to taste

Dressing:

2/3 cup 100% pure orange juice
1/3 cup 100% pure apple juice
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. fresh ginger, grated
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice

1/4 tsp. Kosher saltIn a medium-sized pot, combine chicken broth and quinoa. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 13-15 minutes, or until the liquid is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and set aside. In another pot, combine the wheat berries and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 25 minutes, or until the berries start to soften and become chewy. Drain any extra water and set aside.

While the grains are cooking, chop the vegetables and whisk the dressing ingredients together. Mix with the cooled grains and enjoy. Will keep in the refrigerator for 5-6 days.