So tonights dinner was straight from The Candle Cafe – Carrot Cobb Salad with Carrot Ginger Dressing. I started with homemade seasoned croutons. Very easy, but definitely worth the effort. I cut up some stale-ish bread, and tossed in a bowl with a small bit of oil and some tasty seasonings: thyme, rosemary, sage, basil and fresh cracked pepper. Then it was baked in the oven until roasty-toasty. About 20 minutes at 350 for me.
Next up was my interpretation of bacon bits. I shredded a block of tempeh into a shallow bowl. Then I marinated the shreds in a close approximation of FatFreeVegan’s Cajun Tempeh Bacon. I let this marinate for about an hour. Then I layed the soggy mess on a flat baking sheet and cooked it at 350 until it got crispy enough for me. It was somewhere between 30 and 40 minutes. About every 10 minutes or so I would go in with a spatula and stir them up and even out the soggy parts. In the end everything was crispy, spicy and tasty!
Phase 3 of this meal was the tofu salad from the book. I am not usually a fan of tofu cubes. Truth is, they kind of freak me out. I had prefrozen a block of extra firm tofu and then allowed it to defrost. I cut the tofu cubes pretty small for the salad. With the extra meatiness from the freezing and the delicious sauce, I was not freaked out by the tofu and it all tasted pretty darn good. I am definitely not saying I will start gnawing on hunks of raw tofu, but in small doses and
properly prepared, it can be downright tasty!
The final ingredient (besides all the fresh veggies) was the carrot ginger dressing. I made this in the morning and let it stew in its juices in the fridge during the day. I was a bit dubious about it as I didn’t like the flavor in the morning. Once I assembled the salad on the plate – WHAM – it was fantastic!!! The beautiful, rich orange color was simply lovely to look at too! Waiting for warm weather here in the frozen north can really get you down, but this was like my own plate of sunshine =)
It may seem like a lot of work for this meal, but instead it was alot of steps. None of the steps were particularly labor intensive and some of it could certainly be omitted (like the homemade bacon bits and croutons.) However – they really were delicious and contributed to a fantastic salad that was just as good for lunch the next day!