Wow, it feels so foreign to be back to blogging about food after two weeks of traveling and so much other stuff going on in my life. I have to say the break was amazing for me and I wanted to thank you for understanding the pause in my usual post schedule. I also could have done without that awful few days of being sick but I believe there’s a reason for everything and I’m choosing to look at it in a positive light.
So since getting home from traveling I’ve been on this major salad craze. Personally, I have no stipulations or rules for what the definition of a salad can be. However, this salad is probably closer to what you’d typically picture in your mind at the mention of the word than say, a southern USA style cherry and marshmallow salad. (Did your mom ever make that?)
Speaking of things that mom’s make, I feel like brussels sprouts earned a really bad name with the general population because so many people were forced to eat overcooked ones as a kid. You guys, call me crazy, but I love them. If you cook them right, especially roasting them, they can be delish. I also love having them on a salad because the contrast of cooked veggies with crispy raw veggies is so good.
Alright, I’ll step off my step off my soap box as soon as I tell you about the sesame orange dressing because it’s what really makes this whole thing work. I’m considering bottling it and selling it (no, not really). Have I mentioned that Asian cuisine is like my favorite ever? I didnt realize it until this past trip to Santiago when I literally ordered some form of Asian food at every opportunity without even realizing it, sushi, stir-frys, curry…… Yeah, I guess I like it a little and I really want to visit Asia someday.
Okay, so now I’ll stop typing so that if I’ve inspired you at all to try this salad you can go do that. Oh, and did I mention that it’s vegan friendly? Well, I hope you love it!
- 2 cups brussels sprouts, trimmed
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- sea salt and black pepper to taste
- 2 cups steamed brown rice (cold if possible)
- 2 cups fresh spinach, washed and large stems removed
- 2 cups romaine or iceberg lettuce, shredded
- 1 carrot, grated
- 1 small white onion, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cups raw or roasted peanuts
- 1 large (ripe) avocado, sliced or chopped
- 1 medium orange (juice and zest)
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons chili garlic paste
- 2 tablespoons black sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoons regular sesame seeds
- 1 teaspoon mirin
- 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
- Combine all of the ingredients for the dressing in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake very well. If possible make this up at least an hour prior to serving and up to 48 hours for really good flavor.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200C) and toss the brussels sprouts in a large bowl with the olive oil, salt, and pepper. Spread them out on a medium baking pan and roast in the oven for 30 to 40 minutes until tender-crisp. Remove and allow them to cool.
- Combine all of the other ingredients for the salad in a large bowl and toss until combined. Add the brussels sprouts and when ready to serve, toss with the dressing. Alternatively you can serve with the dressing on the side,