Thursday, March 21, 2013

When Salad is the King, the Dressing is the Crown

So I eat a LOT of salad… one huge bowl every day for lunch. I’m not really much for chopping up ‘fixin’s’ for the salad so I go with a mixture of Kale Slaw and Organic Mixed Spring Greens from Costco… I used to like the Kale Slaw on it’s own but one day it just got really hard to choke down so now I mix it. I top my salad with two and a half baked chicken thighs (boneless skinless).

I’ve been eating this exact lunch since before the New Year and the only reason I don’t want to whip the bowl off the 5th floor deck and go get a cheeseburger is because of the dressing. When I started the W30, I knew I had to figure out a new salad dressing and quick because the one I’d been eating has every disallowed thing in it that they could jam in there… sugar, soy lecithin, dairy, chemicals!

I’ve since made both the following dressings successfully and so much so that people LOOKING at my lunch have requested the recipe. I imagine since they see my lunch every day also, that they must think it’s some sort of magic that keeps me interested every day. It is.

First up is a creation all my own.

I call it Toasted Walnut Bliss Dressing. People have asked if it has cheese in it or anchovies or if it’s Caesar salad dressing. The answer to all those is no, but with a taste profile like that, how can it be anything but great?

Toasted Walnut Bliss Dressing

1 cup of toasted walnuts
Splash of Balsamic vinegar (or whatever vinegar you have on hand… sherry, redwine, rice)
1tbsp whole grain Dijon mustard (check for W30)
½-1 tbsp minced garlic
Juice of a whole lemon or lime… I’ve done both and both are great!
Olive Oil
Salt/Pepper to taste

Load the first five ingredients into the magic bullet or blender. You’ll use the olive oil and water to thin the mixture to your desired consistency. I usually start with about a ¼ cup of olive oil and if I need it thinner, then I add water and then EVOO in equal parts until I’m happy.

This lasts in a mason jar in the fridge for at least a week (I use it all up in a week so I can’t say it’s staying power past that but there’s nothing in there that should go bad).

The second dressing that I have for you today is actually a repost from Northwest Cave Girls. They call it a Ranch dressing but I find it closer to a Lemon Dill dressing. I guess depending on your amounts of seasonings you can make it more or less dilly as you like.

Paleo/Vegan Ranch Dressing

1 cup olive oil
1 cup Coconut Milk (use canned to get the thicker texture or use coconut cream mixed with coconut milk)
1 Tbs apple cider vinegar
1 Tbs prepared dijon mustard
2 tsp Dill
2 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Onion Powder
1 tsp Chives
4 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1/2 tsp Parsley
1/2 tsp Thyme
1/2 tsp Sea Salt (to taste)
1/2 tsp pepper (to taste)

Combine all ingredients in a blender or magic bullet and pulse until well combined.

There you have it.  Two amazing Paleo approved, W30 approved and yummy approved salad dressings to keep you interested all week long!