Every year or so I go through a couple of weeks where I devour every pro-veganism documentary Netflix has to offer. Usually fanatical, filled with bold claims and uncomfortable footage of the origin of most supermarket meat it is the perfect kick up the butt whenever I feel the need to steer away from a reliance on my closest Turkish restaurant and back onto a more plant filled meal plan.
I think there is a lot to be said for enjoying meat occasionally it’s absolutely delicious! But as a general rule for at home I try not to buy it and try to stick to a vegetarian food, or vegan if possible. Yes, in some part because mass farming is cruel and terrible for the environment, but mostly because meat is filling, and if you remove that and replace it with an equally satiating mixture of vegetables and legumes you are getting so many more nutrients.
This salad was concocted to replace my love of processed caesar salad dressing. It has all the best bits of the classic salad, lots of leafy greens, crunch and salty savouriness from roasted almonds instead of greasy croutons and bacon and a thick creamy dressing with just the right amount of tang. Griddling the lettuce is optional but the contrast between the soft hot lettuce on top and the crisp cold lettuce underneath makes this salad something special.
Cook time -under 10 minutes Serves 2
2 pointy heads of lettuce (i.e. gem, cos or romaine) ends trimmed until white, and sliced in half vertically.
4 tbsp creamy cashew dip mixed with 2-4 tbsp water until pouring consistency
2 tbsp chopped roasted rosemary almonds
- Preheat a griddle pan until hot then lay the lettuce cut side down on the griddle pan and cook for 4-6 minute until char lines appear. Lay charred side up in a plate and drizzle with dressing and sprinkle with chopped almonds. Serve still hot.
Rosemary Roasted Almonds
1 cup almonds 2 sprigs rosemary, torn into inch long pieces generous pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 160C fan. Scatter the almonds and rosemary pieces over a baking tray, and bake in the middle of the oven for 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with salt whilst still hot. Wait until cool until eating.
Creamy Cashew Dip
½ cup raw cashews, left to soak in water for at least 4 hours juice of one lemon half a clove of garlic, grated 1 tbsp tahini salt and pepper to taste
Drain the soaked cashews then add to a small blender with the rest of the ingredients and 2 tbsp water and blend until smooth (you may need to add another tbsp or 2 of water if too thick).