The weather has been kind of terrible in Vancouver…if it was acceptable to dress in head-to-toe fleece blankets, I would do it. And yes, I know I am a total West Coast weather wimp!
As a result, I am not yet craving a lot of full-on leafy salads. Of course, that doesn’t mean I am not eating salads… I am simply focusing more on warm or chopped salads.
So, just in time for the seasonal onslaught of green food recommendations, I offer my whole foods alternative: the Green Goddess Chopped Salad.
This is a hearty, protein-rich salad that will stick with you. Give you fortitude before you lace up the sneaks and hit the trail…or just the afternoon meeting. The dressing was the result – as so many of my recipes are – of having an abundance of basil to use up so the basil flavour is full on. I am in love with the green, slightly sweet taste of basil; if you aren’t, simply reduce the basil to about 1/3 cup and the flavour will be much milder.
Who needs luck when you have a belly full of healthy food?
Green Goddess Spring Salad with Almond Ricotta
- 1 pound baby potatoes scrubbed and quartered
- olive oil, salt and pepper for roasting
- 2 cups peas fresh or thawed from frozen
- 2 cups shelled frozen edamame thawed
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 1/2 cups raw almonds soaked four hours or overnight
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 clove garlic
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup raw tahini
- 2/3 cup water
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 4 cloves roasted garlic
- 1 cup packed basil
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- pinch of chili flakes
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss potatoes with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper on a rimmed cookie sheet and roast until golden brown and crispy, about 30-40 minutes, depending on the size of the pieces. If you do not already have roasted garlic on hand, you can add four cloves of garlic, skin on, to the cookie sheet but watch them as they will likely roast in half the time of the potatoes.
- Meanwhile, let the peas and edamame thaw in a colander if they are still frozen. Running hot water over them for a minute will speed up the process.
- Prepare the almond ricotta: slip the skins off of the almonds
(will be easy to do when almonds are soaked). Add the almonds, water, garlic, lemon juice and salt to a food processor or high speed blender and puree for a couple of minutes until ingredients are well-pureed. Taste and adjust salt and lemon juice as desired. The ricotta should form into a ball when pressed in your hand.
- Prepare the dressing: add the tahini, water, lemon juice,
garlic, basil, salt and chili flakes to a food processor or high speed blender and blend until smooth. Adjust salt and lemon juice to taste.
- You can serve this salad at room temperature or warm. If serving warm, give the peas and edamame an extra rinse with some hot water from the tap.
- In a large salad bowl, place the potatoes, peas, edamame and pine nuts. Add a desired amount of dressing and toss thoroughly. Add pinches of almond ricotta to finish.