Avocado Ranch Dressing

With spring finally here, we have been catching up with our salads and enjoying them every day. To make things a little bit more exciting, I tried to make ranch dressing. Now, this is funny because I never had ranch dressing before becoming vegan, so I am not an expert on how it should taste. However, I think this is pretty close… or maybe not. Either way, this is creamy, delicious and so tasty! Call it whatever you like, but you need to try it out!

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Here is what you need:

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • the juice of 1/2 lime or lemon
  • 1 cup parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh dill
  • 2 chopped green onions
  • 1 clove of garlic (optional if you are going to eat this before a meeting or date)
  • 1/4-1/2 cup water
  • salt and pepper to taste

Here is what you do:

  1. Process everything until smooth. Adjust the amount of water to get the consistency you prefer.
  2. Keep in the fridge in an air-tight container.

This is seriously delicious! The dill flavour is fantastic, while the avocado makes everything creamy and so satisfying (regular avocado-magic!). This makes any salad spectacular and amazing. Let me know if you try it out, or what is your favourite dressing!

Fancy (but easy) Mushroom Nest

This week-end I went to Blanc de Gris which is an urban farm specialized in oyster mushrooms. How fun! I was so excited I actually did a cooking test before cooking the whole batch to make sure I would do it right… Well, I’m glad I did because this looked really nice, and it was delicious!

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Look at all these colors! This dish was fresh, savoury, filling and really let the mushrooms be the stars of the show. The grapefruit and clementine salad was so flavourful and brings a really nice texture to the entire plate. It could really make a meal of its own. As for the purple potato mash, well, I’m completely biased about purple sweet potatoes, so let’s just say it was amazing.

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But really, the mushrooms were incredible! So firm, tender and so not mushy. Unlike any mushrooms I have bought before these have a flavour of their own and are not watery at all.

Here is what you need for the strawberry-grapefruit dressing:

  • 1/2 cup grapefruit flesh
  • 3 strawberries
  • 3 tbs sesame oil
  • 1 tsp sriracha (adjust to taste)
  • salt and pepper to taste

Here is what you do for the dressing:

  1. Just put everything in your blender and blend until the strawberries are completely pureed.
  2. Keep this is an air-tight container in the fridge. This will stay fresh for about a week.

Here is what I put in the salad:

  • romaine and butter lettuce
  • grapefruit flesh
  • clementine chunks
  • capers
  • avocado
  • shredded carrots

Here is what you need for the purple mash:

  • 2 normal white potatoes (I really need to pay more attention to varieties of potatoes…), about 4 cups once diced
  • 2-3 purple sweet potatoes, about 4 cups once diced
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 laurel leaf
  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • salt and pepper to taste

Here is what you do for the mash:

  1. Wash and peel the potatoes. Dice them in small chunks.
  2. Boil in water with the laurel leaf until the potatoes are tender and cooked through.
  3. Strain and transfer to a big bowl. With a potato masher or a fork, mash the potatoes. Add the milk a little at a time until you get the consistency you like.
  4. Add the dried herbs, give a good mix and season to your own taste.

Here is what you need for the mushrooms:

  • 350g fresh oyster mushrooms
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • salt to taste

Here is what you do:

  1. Crush and mince the garlic and set aside. Separate and cut the mushrooms if they are not bite-sized.
  2. In a large pan, heat the oil on medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the mushrooms and sauté until they have a nice golden color.
  3. Add the garlic and salt and stir well until cooked through.

To assemble the plate, add lettuce first then all the other salad ingredients around the plate. Add a few spoonfuls of mash in the center and flatten it with the back of a spoon. Arrange the mushrooms in the center and add some dressing on the salad before serving.

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Be ready to impress anyone you are serving this too, including yourself! This is such a fancy-looking plate, so why not try it out?

Let me know what you think and if you try it out!

Easy Thai Inspired Salad Dressing

While in San Francisco, one of the best salads we had was the Thai Salad from Hot Spud. Nothing fancy, but the spicy peanut dressing was really tasty and delicious.

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So, I tried to make something similar to it, and this is what I came up with.

This dressing is very creamy, adds a ton of flavour, gives you some protein and is a breeze to make. You don’t even need a blender! What else it there to ask for?

I don’t think there is much “Thai-ness” to this, but it is very yummy, so please give it a try!

Here is what you need:

  • the juice of 1 lime (about 1/3 cup) + the zest of it
  • 1 tbs sesame oil
  • 2-3 tbs of crunchy peanut butter
  • 1 tsp tahini butter
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp of sriracha hot sauce
  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup of water
  • salt

Here is what you do:

  1. Mix the lime juice and zest, sesame oil, hot sauce, tahini and peanut butter together.
  2. Add water until you get the consistency you enjoy most.
  3. Add salt to taste and mix well.

This dressing will keep for about a week in the fridge.

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What I like about this sauce is that you don’t have to make a salad dressing: depending on the amount of water you put in, you can use this as a spread for sandwiches, a quick pasta sauce to eat with noodles and a bunch of greens, a dipping sauce for vegetables, and the list goes on and on.

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For this salad, I use chicory lettuce (also known as curly endive), cilantro, green apples, pomegranate seeds, beets, roasted potatoes and yams, and walnuts: a one dish, filling and tasty salad. Yum!

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Let me know if you try this out and if you like it 🙂 What’s your favourite salad dressing?