During the summer when the farmer’s markets, fruit stands and grocery stores are brimming with fresh produce, it’s easy to eat our fill of fresh fruits and vegetables. But during the long winter months, we may struggle to find ways to use root vegetables or other vegetables that are in season. Here are a few salad ideas using seasonal veggies, and the dressings to match.
Peanut-Sauced Spring Noodle Salad
2 cups of thick spaghetti noodles, cooked
8 spears asparagus
1 English cucumber
1 red pepper
2 small chicken breasts
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1/2 cup peanuts
1/2 cup peanut butter
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp honey
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
In a pot, add water and cook noodles as directed on package. Drain and set aside to cool. To steam asparagus, fill a large pot with 2 inches of water; add steamer basket, add asparagus and cover pot. Cook on high for about 6 to 10 minutes, or until asparagus are tender-crisp. Remove and let cool.
Slice cucumber into thin ribbons (by hand or with a spiralizer) and slice pepper into thin strips; place in salad bowl. Add asparagus spears.
In a frying pan, cook chicken breasts until cooked through. Slice into bite-sized pieces and add on top of the salad. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and peanuts.
Place dressing ingredients in a jar. Using a large wooden spoon, lightly mash and cream together ingredients. Add lid and refrigerate. Shake dressing and add to salad just before serving.
Summer in a Jar Salad
1 cup chickpeas
1 cup red or white kidney beans
1 cup grape tomatoes cut in half
1 red or yellow pepper, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup red onions, finely sliced
8 tbsp Tofutti Sour Supreme
1 cup spinach leaves, washed and cut into bite-sized pieces
Juice from one lemon, freshly squeezed (about 3 tbsp)
2 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
5 leaves fresh basil, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
Place four large empty Mason jars on counter. Drain and rinse both types of beans and spoon each type of bean into jars, dividing equally among the jars and creating two layers of beans. Next layer the tomatoes, peppers and onion. Spoon 2 tbsp Tofutti Sour Supreme into each jar. Next, add the spinach, packing down as necessary. Seal the jars with their lids.
In a separate jar, add the dressing ingredients and shake to mix. Refrigerate the salad and dressing until ready to use. To serve, pour dressing over salad in jars. These salads can also be packed for a picnic lunch.
Fall Layered Salad
1 head iceberg lettuce, cut into small pieces
1 bag spinach, washed and cut into small pieces
1 large red onion, thinly sliced into rings
1 bag frozen peas, thawed
1 lb. bacon, cooked and crumbled
4 hard-boiled eggs, shelled and cut in half
1/2 cup Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese
1 1/2 cups Tofutti Sour Supreme
In a large glass bowl (a straight-sided trifle bowl is ideal), layer the lettuce leaves, spinach leaves, onion and peas.
Meanwhile, make the hard-boiled eggs, peel and cut into halves. In a frying pan, cook bacon; drain, crumble and cool. Add eggs and bacon to the glass bowl.
Winter Mandarin Orange Salad
An old favourite with a new twist.
1 bag mini marshmallows
2 cups Tofutti Sour Supreme
1/2 cup maraschino cherries
1 can mandarin orange segments, drained
In a large bowl, place marshmallows and Sour Supreme and stir to mix. Add cherries and orange segments and stir gently. Transfer to serving bowl. Refrigerate until serving time.