Cold Noodle Salad with Miso & Sesame Dressing

A super easy salad that can be easily adapted to what you have in your fridge or any other toppings you feel like having. I love vinegar and I have been eating a lot of pickled veggies lately. So for this, I pickled some radish in red wine vinegar to add a pop of color. You can also use pickled ginger instead. To keep it simple I just added avocado, a 6 minute egg, cucumber and edamame. This is great to take to lunch the next day too.

This recipe serves 2.

Ingredients:

For the miso & sesame dressing:

1 teaspoon of red miso

1 tablespoon of minced ginger

4 tablespoons of sesame oil

3 tablespoons of soy sauce

1 1/2 tablespoons of agave syrup or honey

1 clove of garlic, minced

Juice of 1 lime

1 teaspoon of chili oil

For the salad:

200grs of noodles of your choice (I used a gluten free variety, made with brown rice & amaranth)

½ a cucumber, thinly sliced

A bit of pickled radish (I pickled my own in red wine vinegar, hence the color , with a bit of salt, sugar and chili), you can also use pickled ginger.

150gr of cooked edamame beans

1 egg

1 avocado, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon of Togarashi

1 tablespoon of black sesame seeds

 

To make the dressing, just place all of the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until it emulsifies. Set it aside.

For the soft boiled egg, place it in a saucepan and add boiling water. Let it cook for 6 minutes over medium heat. Then rinse it under cold water to stop the cooking. Peel it and set it aside until serving.

Cook the noodles as instructed on the package. Then rinse them under cold water to stop the cooking. Drizzle a little bit of sesame oil so that they don’t stick.

Divide the noodles over two bowls. Add the avocado, edamame, cucumber, radish and egg. Sprinkle some togarashi and black sesame seeds on top. Serve with the miso & sesame dressing. Enjoy!

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Mini Salmon Caesar Salad Cups

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Caesar salad has been a favorite of mine since I was a little kid. I slightly change the dressing recipe depending on what I feel at the time, using mayo or Greek yogurt. This time I went for half & half, and skipped on the Parmesan to make it a bit health“ish”. If you want to go all Greek yogurt, you need to adjust the seasoning a bit since it is not as flavorsome as mayo. Since they are mini portions, they are perfect for a BBQ or dinner party!

This recipe makes about 17 mini cups.

Ingredients:

For the Salmon:

450grs of salmon, minced with a knife

2 tablespoons of chopped coriander

½ teaspoon of celery salt

½ teaspoon of garlic powder

½ teaspoon of onion powder

Pinch of cayenne

1 ½ tablespoons of Greek yogurt

½ cup of breadcrumbs

Pinch of salt

1 egg yolk

1 egg

Zest of 1 lime

Pinch of black pepper

1 tablespoon of all-purpose flour

For the dressing:

½ cup of mayonnaise

Juice of 1 lime

5 anchovy fillets, minced

2 tablespoons of white vinegar

Small pinch of garlic powder

½ cup of Greek yogurt

Pinch of salt

Extras:

4 mini little gem lettuce (cleaned, dried and leaves separated)

½ cup of olive oil for pan-frying the salmon

9 quail eggs

 

Start by making the dressing. Place all of the ingredients in a jar with a lid and shake it till it emulsifies. Keep it in the fridge until ready to serve.

To make the salmon cakes, place all of the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Then form small balls with about ¼ of a cup of the salmon mixture. Once all the salmon cakes are assembled, keep them in the fridge until ready to fry.

In the meanwhile cook the quail eggs. What I normally do is boil some water in a kettle, place the quail eggs in a saucepan and then carefully pour in the boiling water. Cook over medium heat for about 2 ½ minutes. Then rinse them under cold water to stop the cooking. Peel them, slice them in half and set them aside.

Pour the olive oil into a large pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, fry the salmon cakes for about 2 minutes per side, pressing a bit with a spatula to flatten them. I did it in 2 batches.

To assemble the salad, place one salmon cake over each lettuce leave. Add half of a quail egg and drizzle some of the sauce. Enjoy!

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Kale, Mango & Spinach Salad with Miso Ginger Dressing

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This is a super easy and healthy salad with Asian flavors. If you want to make the avocado rose and you don’t know how to do it, you can check out my video here. Today I am taking over the Instagram account of Broste Copenhagen, an interior brand. They have beautiful products and I have been using them for a while now. All the tableware above is from them. If you would like to follow along, you can check out their Instagram page.

This recipe serves 2.

Ingredients:

For the salad:

1 large mango, julienned

1 avocado, thinly sliced

200grs of baby spinach

100grs of baby kale

1 tablespoon of black sesame seeds

For the dressing:

2 tablespoons of minced ginger

2 teaspoons of red miso paste

4 tablespoons of sesame oil

4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar

3 tablespoons of honey

2 small bird’s eye chili, finely chopped

Juice of 2 limes

2 teaspoons of brown sugar

2 tablespoons of chopped chives

 

Start by making the dressing. Place all of the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until everything is combined. I didn’t add any salt because the miso paste is already quite salty.

Place the baby kale, baby spinach and mango in a large bowl. Add the dressing and mix well.

Divide the salad among 2 plates, sprinkle the black sesame seeds and then add the avocado. If you want, also add some edible flowers. Enjoy!

For more foodie inspiration, you can follow me on Instagram and Facebook. For behind the scenes, more of Amsterdam and a peek of press events, you can follow me on Snapchat: cravingsinams.

Frisée, Gorgonzola & Bacon Salad with Cherry and Port Dressing

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This past weekend, I saw cherries for the first time at the market and of course I had to get some. Besides snacking on them, I saved some for this salad. For the dressing, I used frozen cherries just because they already come pitted but you can also use fresh ones. I love the combination of the slightly sweet dressing with the bitterness of the frisée, the salty bacon and creamy gorgonzola.

This recipe serves 2.

For the dressing:

1 cup of frozen cherries, pitted

1 shot of port

¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon of olive oil

2 tablespoons of honey

Pinch of garlic powder

Salt to taste

For the salad:

5 slices of crispy bacon, crumbled

½ a head of frisée, torn into bite sized pieces

80grs of gorgonzola, crumbled into small pieces

1 cup of fresh cherries, pitted and sliced

 

Start by making the dressing. Place the cherries in the microwave for about 1 ½ minutes to thaw. Then blend them and pass it through a fine mesh sieve. Pour the cherry juice into a medium saucepan. Add the port, balsamic, olive oil, honey and garlic powder. Cook for about 4 minutes over medium heat, until it thickens a bit and the alcohol evaporates. Add salt to taste. Then pour it into a bowl and allow it to cool down.

To assemble the salad, just divide the frisée among two bowls. Add the gorgonzola, cherries and bacon. Serve with the dressing on the side. Enjoy!

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Sweet Potato Falafel Salad

FullSizeRenderOn Sunday we visited the Japanese cherry blossom park at the Amsterdamse bos. It’s one of those things I look forward to every spring. The weather was just perfect that day! Sunny and warm. People brought their picnics and were chilling on the grass. It’s a beautiful place around this time of the year and very close to Amsterdam.

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I had been craving falafel and I made this one by adding mashed roasted sweet potato to the chickpea mixture. It adds a slight sweetness to it. I served them over a very simple salad with baby Swiss chard, Kalamata olives, cucumber and feta. It’s healthy, easy to make and filling.

This recipe serves 3.

Ingredients:

For the sweet potato falafel:

1 cup of dried chickpeas, soaked in water overnight

1 bunch of parsley

1 cup of mashed roasted sweet potato

½ teaspoon of onion powder

½ teaspoon of garlic powder

½ teaspoon of celery salt

Juice of ½ a lime

Pinch of cayenne

Pinch of salt

For the salad:

1 cucumber, core removed and thinly sliced

100grs of crumbled feta

100gr of Kalamata olives, sliced

100grs of baby Swiss chard or any leafy greens of your choice

Garden cress (optional)

For the dressing:

1/3 cup of olive oil

¼ cup of white vinegar

Juice of 1 lemon

1 tablespoon of honey

1 teaspoon of mustard

Salt

Extra:

Olive oil for pan-frying the falafel

 

To make the sweet potato falafel, soak the dried chickpeas in enough water overnight. For the sweet potato, you can roast it the night before, mash it and keep it in the fridge. Roast 1 medium sweet potato at 180C/350F for 1 hour.

The next day, drain the chickpeas and place all of the ingredients for the falafel in the food processor. Pulse until everything is well combined and there are not big chunks, but not too fine that it becomes a puree. You want it to still have some texture.

Then grab some of the mixture and form it into a ball using the palm of your hands. I grabbed about 1 ½ tablespoons of the mixture. It makes about 25 small balls.

Once all the falafels are assembled, pour about 1/3 of a cup of olive oil into a large pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, fry the falafel in batches until lightly browned. This will take about 5 minutes per batch. Just be careful not to press on them too much while turning them so that they don’t break apart.

To make the dressing just place all of the ingredients in a jar with a lid, close it and shake it until it emulsifies.

In a large bowl, mix the sliced cucumber, crumbled feta, Kalamata olives, baby Swiss chard and garden cress. Add the dressing and toss to coat.

Divide the salad among 3 plates and then add the falafel. Enjoy!

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Beet Couscous with Balsamic Glazed Carrots & Carrot Top Dressing

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I didn’t like carrots as a kid and now I love them, especially when they are roasted. These are sweet and still crunchy, and to not waste the carrot tops, I made a dressing with it. A very simple and easy vegetarian dish but still packed with flavor.

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This recipe serves 2.

Ingredients:

For the carrots:

7 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into about 6cm long sticks

3 tablespoons of melted butter

¼ cup of balsamic vinegar

¼ cup of sugar

½ teaspoon of salt

For the couscous:

1 cup of couscous

1 cup of vegetable stock

1 tablespoon of butter

1 medium roasted beet

For the carrot top dressing:

½ cup of chopped carrot top

2 tablespoons of chopped basil

1/3 cup of olive oil

20gr of grated Parmesan

2 tablespoons of white vinegar

1 tablespoon of honey

Juice of ½ a lime

Salt

Pepper

Extras:

¼ cup of toasted slivered almonds

 

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Mix the melted butter, balsamic vinegar, sugar and salt in a medium bowl. Then add the carrots and toss to coat them. Spread them on a single layer in the prepared baking sheet. Pour the remaining glaze over the carrots.

Roast the carrots for 45 minutes, stirring half way through.

While the carrots are roasting, start making the dressing. Just blend all of the ingredients together until smooth. Taste for salt and pepper. Set it aside.

Once the carrots are done, start to make the couscous. Blend the vegetable stock with the roasted beet. Then pour it into a medium saucepan and add the butter over medium heat. Once the butter has melted, turn off the heat and add the couscous. Mix it well and cover it with a lid. Let it be for 5 minutes and then fluff it using a fork.

Serve the couscous with the glazed carrots, the carrot top dressing and slivered almonds.

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