As August is officially over, and we are welcoming the month of September, the warm, sunny days are slowly going to become less and less frequent. But hey, not so fast with the autumn blues! I’ll talk more about how to make the best out of the transition season in another post, but for now let’s work on keeping that summer, holiday spirit as much as we can. 🙂 The recipe I am about to share with you is a great way to do just that. It is light and fresh, and the delicate, yet zesty dressing will help put you in a celebration mood. I have said this so often, but I am going to repeat it here again, because it is so true – the dressing is what makes a salad taste great! You might have great ingredients, but if you make a boring or bland dressing, you won’t be able to bring forth the taste of the ingredients you are using. As I was playing with this recipe, I thought that making a dressing with orange, lemon and ginger will nicely complement the earthiness and sweetness of the roasted carrots. In my opinion, the dressing managed to do just that. Add the creamy avocado, and marinated tempeh and you’ve got yourself a nicely rounded salad, that is both nutritious and filling. I like serving it as a main for lunch or as a side or starter for dinner, but feel free to play around with it as you please.
I’ve been trying to make a little avocado rose for this salad, but I totally failed, as you can see. I managed to finally get a nicely looking avocado rose in the evening, but it was too dark to take a picture. Oh well, practice is what matters, and it’s all about progress, not perfection anyways, right?
Here is what you will need for this salad:
Roasted Carrot and Avocado Salad with Orange-Lemon Dressing
For the salad:
- 1 red lettuce head
- 150gr fresh baby spinach leaves
- 150gr tempeh
- 1 tbsp tamari
- 4 medium carrots
- 1 head of broccoli, steamed
- 1 ripe avocado For the Dressing:
- juice of 1 lemon
- juice of 1/2 orange
- 2tsp honey
- thumb-sized fresh ginger, minced
- 2tsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1tbsp sesame seeds
- 2tsp cumin
- 1 1/2tsp coriander
- 1/2tsp garlic powder
- handful of fresh coriander
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius
- Wash and slice the carrots halfway and then into thin stripes. Put them on a baking sheet and brush on them a little bit of olive oil, cumin and coriander. Bake for about 30min until they become soft and lightly brown. Set aside.
- Toast the sesame seeds by placing them in the still hot oven for about 4-5 min. Remove and set aside.
- While the carrots are baking wash and dry the salad and the baby spinach and place them in a salad bowl.
- Cut the tempeh into cubes and saute in a pan with the tamari sauce. Add it to the salad bowl.
- Steam the broccoli for a few minutes. You want them to be still lightly crunchy and with a bright green colour. You can mix them with the salad and the dressing to make them more flavorful.
- Prepare the dressing: In a separate small bowl mix all the dressing ingredients together. Pour it over the salad and mix well.
- Slice the avocado width-wise in thin slices. Fan out the avocado slices so they form a long line with the slices overlapping each-other. Starting from one end curl the avocado slices from one end towards the middle. Continue like this until you get a rose. (Since I was not successful with mine as my avocado was too ripe, you might want to look online for more precise directions on how to properly make the avocado rose.)
- Assemble your salad: Place the salad from the bowl with the dressing on a plate, add the roasted carrots, avocado rose, and steamed broccoli to the plate. Sprinkle the toasted sesame seeds on top and enjoy!