Wednesday, February 15, 2012

North African Vegetable Salads

Here are some vegan recipes I created for my column in the j. weekly.  For more background on the recipes and info on the column, please see the post on Blog Appetit.

Briefly cooking the kale in the Kale Salad and Garlic Salad with Lemon helps tame its assertiveness. The cauliflower salad uses the Tunisian condiment harissa in the dressing. Harissa, a chili-garlic paste, is available in many supermarkets and in specialty stores. If you would like to make your own, here’s my recipe. The white bean dish features radishes and carrots, frequent ingredients in Moroccan salads.

Kale Salad with Garlic
Serve s 4-6

1 large or 2 small bunches of Tuscan kale (also known as dino or black kale)
1-2 tsp. minced garlic
2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp., packed, minced lemon zest
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/8 tsp. cumin
1/8 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/8 tsp. paprika
1 tomato, chopped into 1/4” pieces

Remove tough bottom stems from kale. You should have about 12 oz. of leaves. Immerse in boiling water. Return to boil. Cover and cook kale for 2 minutes. Kale should be pliable and somewhat tender. Immediately remove from pot, rinse with cold water and drain well. Pat leaves dry with paper towels.
Blotting, rolling and slicing kale
Stack 6-8 leaves. Roll from tip of leaf to stem. Gently squeeze bundle to remove any excess water. Slice into 1/4” strips. Repeat with remainder of kale. Place in large bowl, tossing to untangle kale strips. Dry again with paper towels if there is a lot of moisture.

Combine garlic, juice, zest, oil, cumin, sugar, salt, pepper and paprika. Mix well and toss with kale strips. Garnish with chopped tomato. Serve at room temperature.

Cauliflower Salad with Harissa
Serves 4-6

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. harissa (Tunisian chili-garlic paste)
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt plus additional if needed
1 medium cauliflower
1/2 cup 1/4" chunks of red onion
3 Tbs. finely chopped fresh mint
3 tsps., packed, minced lemon zest

Mix juice, harissa, oil and 1/4 tsp. salt. Set aside. Core cauliflower and cut into 1 and 1/2” florets. Steam over boiling water for 4-6 minutes until tender but not cooked through. Immediately toss with harissa mixture and red onion. Mix in mint and lemon zest. Taste and add additional salt if needed. Serve warm or at room temperature.

White Bean Salad with Radishes and Carrots
Serves 4-6

1 and 3/4 cups cooked white kidney beans, rinsed and drained (15 oz. can)
1 cup 1/4" cubes of red bell pepper
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions (white and light green part only)
1/4 cup 1/8” pieces of red radish
1 cup 1/4" chunks of carrot
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/8 tsp. salt plus additional if needed
1/4 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbs. finely chopped parsley

Combine beans, red bell, green onions, radish pieces and carrot chunks. Mix lemon juice, 1/8 tsp. of salt, paprika, cumin, garlic and olive oil. Combine with beans and vegetables. Stir in parsley. Taste, adding more salt if needed. Serve at room temperature.

A dessert, a snack or a treat? Monkeying around with a banana dish.

A new complusion -- a ripe banana mashed in a bowl with fork.  Sprinkle on some finely shredded coconut if desired and sweetner if you like (I like maple syrup). Mash the additions in and pour in 2-3 Tbs. of almond milk. Stir and spoon up. Yum.
(Photo from MS Office Clip Art)