Salad Dressing Recipes

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Healthy Grapefruit and Bok Choy Salad Recipe Recipe

I felt like making a low-fat salad today because my husband Lulu and I have been diligently working out every day. I bought beautiful pink grapefruits at our local market, so I used the sweet and slightly acidic fruit in the salad. Bok choy and roasted bell peppers rounded out the flavors and textures of the dish. I finished it with a tahini and miso salad dressing that really bound the flavors together.

Even though the meal was low in calories, it was so flavorful. The salad  nicely complemented the grilled cod and soy gluten I prepared for Lulu and me. The best part is that even though he is a vegetarian and I eat meat, we were able to share a meal together.


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French Rice Salad Recipe Recipe

French Rice Salad Recipe

06.09.10 by Jackie

Salade de riz aux légumes is my attempt to serve my family healthy food that doesn't sacrifice flavor. As you may have noticed, I have a tendency to make food that is a bit rich. We're all trying to workout more and get into good shape, and while I won't ever give up butter and cream, I've learned that I don't have to put it in every dish.

The rice salad is made with a blend of both brown and white rice for a balanced texture. I also added a mix of vegetables that are available this time of the season (the zucchini and squash are from our garden). I used fresh steamed corn, roasted bell peppers, diced tomatoes, grilled eggplant, edamame and tofurkey.

Since there is no cheese involved, I was afraid the rice salad would lack flavor, so I made spicy vinaigrette. Since I still need "real" protein besides the edamame beans and tofurkey, I added smoked turkey in a separate batch. Everyone enjoyed it, myself included!


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Vegetarian Quinoa Appetizers Recipe

Vegetarian Quinoa Appetizers

05.19.10 by Jackie

Quinoa is a grain that is perfect for a gluten free diet; however it's very bland by itself. We had a very dear friend over for lunch this weekend and she is allergic to gluten, so I was determined to figure out a satisfying way to prepare quinoa. I ended up flavoring it with parsley and a medley of vegetables and seasonings such as corn, artichokes, eggplant, button mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, French green beans, capers, bell peppers and gorgonzola. This allows the quinoa to act as a palette for the other flavors.

I served it in a large bowl for brunch, but I also set some aside for something a little more special. I placed mounds of the quinoa on gluten free crackers. The result is a fancy, tasty and unique vegetarian, gluten free appetizer that everyone can enjoy.


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Thousand Island Salad Dressing Recipe

Thousand Island Salad Dressing

05.06.10 by Jackie

For quite some time I’ve been wanting to make an egg-free version of thousand island dressing for my sister-in-law who is allergic to eggs. The dressing is usually a blend of mayonnaise, ketchup and relish, so the challenge was to find a suitable replacement for the eggs in the mayonnaise. I’ve accomplished this task in the past when making cheesecake or ranch dressing by using a combination of lecithin and xanthan gum. Lecithin is the same emulsifier that's found in eggs. I used a liquid, soy-based lecithin because it incorporates into the mixture quite easily. Xanthan gum is a great stabilizer; just mix in a little oil and you can thicken just about any dish.

So there you have it: a flavorful, egg-free, thousand island dressing. If you have anyone with egg allergies in your home, give it a try. They’ll thank you!


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Red Cabbage Coleslaw with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing Recipe

This recipe was inspired by a dish described to me by Chef Doreen T. Ross. We "met" through PhamFatale.com and we've exchanged several emails about dishes. She recently made a plate of very successful fish tacos that used cabbage coleslaw instead of the more traditional choice of lettuce. Doreen made her coleslaw with a buttermilk ranch dressing that sounded delectable. I had to try it myself, so today I tried to recreate the coleslaw that Doreen described to me as a stand alone dish.

I adapted the recipe so the vegetarians in the house could partake, which means there are no eggs. If that's not an issue for you, a standard egg-based ranch dressing would work fine. To make vegetarian ranch dressing, I usually incorporate silken tofu, but as I started working on the dish I realized that I had bought the wrong kind at the store. I had liquid soy lecithin and xanthan gum in my pantry, so I used those instead. If you're familiar with egg-free recipes, xanthan gum and lecithin are an excellent egg substitute.

I didn't think my first iteration of the buttermilk ranch dressing had enough of a kick on its own, so I melted blue cheese and added champagne vinegar to the mix. Because of its rich color, shredded raw red cabbage seemed like the right canvas to showcase the light-colored dressing. I paired the cabbage with cubed Granny Smith apples for a little sweetness and additional color contrast.

The result is an unexpectedly complex and flavorful dish. It was a big success at my house, so I have to say thanks again to Chef Doreen for the tip!


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