Thursday, March 10, 2016

recipe: sesame spring salad

So every year around this time, I get a little stuck in the kitchen. I don't think it's uncommon- March is, after all, sometimes known as hungry month. We're in between growing seasons at the end of a long winter when the preserves and the pantry have been picked over but we're still waiting for those early veggies to make their way into the garden. Or, more relevant in my case- we're at the end of a long winter and are sick and tired of those tested and true cold-weather kitchen favorites. 

Whatever it is I'm sure that I'm not alone in this. But the good news is spring is coming and bringing with it a whole new palate of seasonal delights. It may be a little early for asparagus or strawberries yet, but I've been turning toward some favorite spring-inspired salads on those days when I've got no idea what we should eat.

Today I wanted to share a simple litte recipe for a salad that I've been enjoying these early March days. It's a basic green salad with a bit of a kick. I've been making it for my lunch, with a fresh baguette, torn off in hunks and eaten with good cheese. It's really the perfect light mid-day meal. 

one note I will make about the soy sauce: it packs a punch. The first time I made this salad, I ended up with dressing for 3 extra salads as I kept having to adjust the amounts so the soy sauce wouldn't be so overpowering. Eating soy sauce on salad greens is a lot different from eating it with fried rice or even sushi... and that's coming from a girl who likes to drown those rolls in the stuff. Just start with less than you think you'll need and add more if necessary. Otherwise it'll take over the whole salad and kill those more subtle flavors. 

you will need:

one-two heads of romaine lettuce, washed and cut into strips
one avocado, halved and cut into strips
2 scallions, cut thinly on an angle
half a cucumber, peeled and diced
one tbsp toasted sesame seeds

3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp soy sauce
juice from one lime
1/2 tsp sugar
salt & pepper

Once you've got all your veggies prepped (as explained above) toss the lettuce, scallions and cucumber in a bowl. To make your dressing pour the oil, lime juice, sugar and soy sauce into a jelly jar (with a screwable lid) and add a fresh sprinkling of salt and pepper. Shake well until combined. 

Pour your dressing over the salad and mix well. Finally, add your avocado (I like to lay mine out in a circle as pictured above) and sprinkle the sesame seeds over the top.

Serve alone as a starter, or with a baguette and your favorite delicious cheese for a light lunch. Yum!

note: the amounts listed here are double what I make for my solitary lunch. If you're eating alone either half the amounts or just leave half the salad undressed for the next day.

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