Tangy Rainbow Salad with Herbed Garlic Croutons

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Hello friends! Today I bring you my first salad recipe. I've never been a huge salad person, especially since I've been vegan. Before going vegan I would occasionally have salad but only if there was a lot of chicken and cheese. So after I stopped eating animal products I kind of had a hard time getting into salad because I've always perceived them to be boring and not satisfying. Recently I've learned this is not the case at all.

This is a great recipe for the type of person like me, who is slowly trying to get into eating more greens. The dressing is tangy and reminiscent of a creamy caesar dressing, without the heaviness, and you can fill it with all of your favorite vegetables. Plus these herbed croutons put this salad on a whole new level! You will be surprised how easy it all is.

Ingredients

Croutons

  • 6 cups day old bread (cubed)
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • few cracks of black pepper

dressing

  • 3 tbs tahini
  • 1 tbs apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbs lemon juice
  • 1-2 tsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • few cracks of black pepper
  • 3 tbs water

salad

  • 5 cups romaine lettuce
  • 1 carrot, sliced
  • 1/4 cup carrots, sliced
  • 1 radish, sliced (optional)

instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375º
  2. In a small bowl, combine olive oil, garlic powder, oregano, salt and pepper. 
  3. Stack sliced bread and cut into 1 inch cubes. Transfer them bread to a medium sized bowl and coat with the olive oil, tossing well with a wooden spatula or your hands.
  4.  Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown and crunchy (see note).
  5. While the croutons bake, prepare the dressing by combining the tahini, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, salt and black pepper in a small bowl. Once combined, add the water 1 tbs at a time until you reach your ideal consistency. I like my dressing a medium thinness, so I add between 3 and 4 tbs of water. 
  6.  Assemble salad by adding lettuce, chopped carrots and sliced radish to a salad bowl, tossing the dressing and adding the croutons. 

Notes:

  • Keep an eye on the croutons to ensure they don't burn. The fresher the bread is, the longer it will take to fully brown. I used fresh bread so it took closer to 25 minutes to get crispy.
  • This salad dressing is super versatile and can be used on a variety of veggies. You can double the recipe and store it in an airtight mason jar to eat for day or two.  You may have to add more water to the dressing once you're ready to serve, as it can thicken up in the fridge.