Friday, April 16, 2010

The Raw and the Cooked

I'm so into dinner salads right now. Really into them. Again, I credit this largely to the more abundant produce in our new home. There is also the matter of our farmbox, which every week seems to contain a substantial amount of field greens. Also, ever since we moved here, I haven't been able to eat enough of two things: oranges and avocados. Both are so much cheaper and plentiful here, and I swear they even taste better. We almost never bought avocados in Buffalo, where they cost $2-3 each. Here, organic avocados are .89 and totally delicious. While C is into the avocados, I suspect he's less enthusiastic about the oranges, which have been making their way into just about everything. I've been reassuring him that my obsession will fade with the season. We can get local strawberries right now, but they've been by turns excellent and unimpressive. I'm excited to see the summer produce season unfold before our eyes. This will, undoubtedly, occasion the creation of many more salads in the vein of the one I present to you today. 
Dinner salads really are marvelous, particularly after a day of unhealthy eating. They're refreshing, filling, and extremely flexible. My recent obsession has been playing around with the ratio of cooked ingredients to raw. No flaccid iceberg lettuce salad, this. This salad combines savory and tangy baked tempeh cubes with roasted root vegetables, juicy mandarin oranges, and creamy avocado. It also comes together very quickly--not counting marinating time, and if you coordinated your baking, you might only need one pan.

Orange Tempeh Dinner Salad

1 pkg tempeh
3 T Braggs
2 T orange marmelade
1 T stoneground mustard
1/2 t liquid smoke

Cube the tempeh. Combine all other ingredients in a small bowl and add to tempeh. Stir to coat and allow to marinate for half an hour or so. Then bake in a 350 oven for 30 minutes, stirring every 10.

Roasted Roots

3 small-medium beets, sliced into medalions
3 small-medium carrots, sliced
2 T olive oil
1 t sea salt
1-2 T balsamic vinegar

Mix all ingredients together and roast in a 350 oven for about 30 minutes, stirring every 10.

Everything Else

1/2 avocado
1 roma tomato
2 mandarin oranges
field greens

Assemble the salads as desired. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and a bit more balsamic vinegar.

1 comment:

JennShaggy said...

Haha getting waxed is ten times more terrifying than a bad trip! You are so right on that one.

Thank you for the lovely comment. I started with my friend's Vietnamese mother's recipe, and then just got creative from there. Definitely let me know if you try it :)

Salad looks divine, by the way. I've been really into them lately, too.