Quinoa Salad


Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa) is higher in protein, iron, zinc, calcium and other micronutrients than most other grains.  Its high lysine content gives it an excellent amino acid profile.  Quinoa is gluten-free and thus very useful for people with gluten sensitivity or wheat allergy. 


1 cup quinoa     
2 cups water     
Pinch salt


Rinse quinoa thoroughly before cooking to remove the naturally occurring bitter resin which coats the grain.  Add 1 cup of quinoa to 2 cups of boiling water and salt.  Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until water is all absorbed.  Let cool completely.


Salad Ingredients
1    cup edamame (shelled)   
1    cup red beans (or other beans)  
1/2 cup black olives, sliced   
1    yellow or orange pepper, diced   
3    tomatoes    
1    large cucumber   
3    green onions   
1    bunch parsley    
1    cup basil leaves, finely chopped  other herbs, as



Prepare vegetables and toss in a large bowl with cooked and cooled quinoa.



1/4 cup olive oil    
1/4 cup lemon juice, freshly squeezed 
2  Tbsp red wine or balsamic vinegar   
2  garlic cloves, pressed   
Salt and pepper, to taste


Mix dressing in a jar.  Toss salad with dressing and serve. 


Variations: Other grains can be used in place of or in addition to quinoa.  An excellent choice is wild rice.  Sprouted grains also work well. Add any vegetables you like. Instead of tomatoes and cucumbers, try corn and carrots or broccoli and red onions.






Green Salad


Green salad should be a dietary staple. Move from eating small portions of salads as a side dish to eating large portions of salad (the size you would generally serve a family of 6) – this is the one food it is OK to supersize! Add legumes, nuts and avocados to provide a complete meal.


1 large head romaine lettuce
6 large kale leaves, finely chopped
1 red pepper, diced
1 carrot, chopped or grated
1 stalk celery, sliced diagonally
1 cucumber, sliced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved    


Wash and dry lettuce and kale. Tear lettuce into bite-sized pieces and put in a large salad bowl. Add kale and other vegetables.
Dress salad with Italian dressing just before serving. If you may not finish the salad, dress only the amount you will consume. Dressed salad becomes quite soggy within a few hours. Undressed salad keeps well for 2-3 days.


Note: Vegetables can be omitted or substituted with other vegetables, as desired. Avocado or toasted nuts and seeds can be added just before dressing.


Makes 6 large side-dish servings.
Makes 2-3 full-meal servings.





Spinach Salad


1    bag of spinach, washed and torn into pieces
1    15-oz can mandarin oranges in juice, drained

      or 2 cups strawberries, sliced
1/2 small red onion, sliced very thinly
1/4 cup toasted almonds or pumpkin seeds, if  



Place spinach, drained oranges or strawberries and onions in a large salad bowl.
Toss with Sesame Dressing. Sprinkle with almonds or pumpkin seeds and serve.


Makes 8 servings.




Spinach Wild Rice Salad

This is a delicious combination of wild rice and greens that was passed on to me from my dear friend, Ketti Goudey.

8    cups fresh spinach
2    cups cooked wild rice
1    cup red pepper, chopped
4    green onions, chopped
1/2 cup sunflower seeds, toasted (or almonds)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
2    Tbsp sesame oil
2    Tbsp tamari sauce or Braggs


Wash spinach and break into bite-size pieces. Toss all ingredients together and serve.


Makes 8 servings.






Hot Tofu with Cool Greens


This salad is quite a pleasant surprise. The hot tofu or beans are wonderful compliment to salad. 


Cool Greens
1   head romaine lettuce
2   cups kale, chopped matchstick thin  
4   cups greens of your choice (eg. Organic salad

1   red pepper, diced
1   carrot, sliced or grated
1   stalk broccoli florets, chopped
1   stalk celery, sliced diagonally
Other vegetables as desired (e.g. sprouts, green onions, edible flowers, etc.)
1/4 cup almonds, raw or toasted   
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, raw or toasted   


Prepare salad in a large bowl.  Be sure to dry greens well. 


Hot Tofu
1    Tbsp olive oil     
16  oz extra firm tofu, grated             
2    Tbsp Braggs or tamari   
2    Tbsp Red Star Nutritional Yeast      
2    cloves garlic, minced    
1/2 tsp each oregano and basil  
2    Tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped (optional)   
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste  


In a large skillet, heat olive oil.  Add tofu, Bragg Liquid Aminos, nutritional yeast, garlic, herbs and pepper.  Sauté until tofu is browned (about 5 minutes). 
Heap 4 dinner plates with salad, and top each salad with the tofu.
Serve immediately with Liquid Gold salad dressing.


In addition to the hot tofu, add hot steamed or braised asparagus and/or stir-fried portabella mushrooms.

Instead of hot tofu with cool greens, try hot beans with cool greens. Heat seasoned black, red, kidney or any other beans and use in place of tofu.


Makes 4 servings.






Grated Beet and Watermelon Radish Salad


We subscribe to a fabulous organic delivery service called Urban Harvest in Kelowna. One of the foods that they introduced to us was watermelon radishes. They are very large radishes with a hot pink color inside. They are mild and crunchy. We add them to green salads, and grate them into salads such as this.


3    cups beets, grated*
1    cup watermelon radish, grated*
1    cup celery, diced
1/4 cup sunflower seeds, lightly roasted
1/4 cup raisins (optional)
1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise
1    Tbsp lemon or lime juice


Mix all ingredients together.  Chill and serve.

*If you have a food processor, use it to grate beets and watermelon radish, as beets can be very messy. If you can't get watermelon radishes, kolrabi or carrots both work well.


Makes 4 servings.








Grated Carrot and Apple Salad


4     cups carrots, grated
1     cup celery, diced
2     apples, diced
1/4  cup raisins (optional)
1/4  cup walnuts, chopped
1/2  cup vegan mayonnaise
2     Tbsp lemon or lime juice


Mix all ingredients together.  Chill and serve.


Variation: Substitute apples for 2 cups of fresh, chopped pineapple or 1 x 15 oz canned unsweetened crushed pineapple, drained.


Makes 4 servings.








Yam, Black Bean and Greens Salad


This is a beautiful color combination, and a delicious full meal salad.


2     large yams, steamed or boiled and cut in small

       cubes (4 cups)(let cool before cutting)
3     cups cooked black beans, rinsed and drained
4     cups greens, finely chopped
1/2  onion, diced
1/4  cup chopped parsley (optional)


Place yams, black beans, greens, onion and parsley in a large bowl.
Toss with miso/lime or peanut dressing and chill before serving.


Makes 8 servings.








Spicy Thai Noodle Peanut Salad


This salad is a favorite at potlucks!


1/2  package of brown rice, whole wheat, kamut or other whole grain pasta
3     cups frozen peas or edamame, thawed
4     cups finely chopped Chinese greens or Napa

1     red pepper, diced
2     stalks celery, chopped diagonally 
1/4  green onions, diced (or use ¼ cup regular 

1/4  cup roasted peanuts


Boil noodles according to package directions. Strain and rinse with pure water.
Mix noodles with prepared vegetables.
Toss with peanut dressing. Sprinkle peanuts on top just before serving.


Note: If refrigerated before eating, extra liquid may be needed as the pasta soaks up dressing. Use water or a little sesame oil and Braggs or tamari sauce.










Liquid Gold Dressing


This delicious dressing was developed by Brenda’s writing partner, Vesanto Melina. It is great for use on salads, baked potatoes, rice, steamed broccoli and other veggies. We gave it the name “Liquid Gold”, and not just because of the color! Two tablespoons provides 5 g of omega-3 fatty acids (your days’ supply, and then some) along with 40% of your B12 for the day, when it’s made with Red Star Vegetarian Support Formula nutritional yeast. This creamy dressing is packed with riboflavin and other B vitamins. If you add ground flaxseed, use the larger amount of water (1/2 cup/125 mL); if not use 1/3 cup (85 mL) water. You’ll find when made with ground flaxseed, the dressing thickens over time.


1/2   cup flaxseed oil  
1/2   cup water  
1/3   cup lemon juice    
2      Tbsp balsamic or raspberry vinegar  
1/4   cup tamari or Braggs 
1/4   cup nutritional yeast flakes (Red Star

        Vegetarian Support Formula)
2      tsp Dijon mustard   
1      tsp ground cumin   
1      Tbsp ground flaxseed  


Place oil, water, lemon juice, vinegar, tamari, yeast, mustard, cumin and flaxseed (if using) in blender and blend until smooth.

Dressing can be kept in a jar with lid and refrigerated for up to two weeks.


Makes 1-1/2 cups.


Variation: Replace mustard and cumin with 1 cup of fresh herbs (basil, oregano and parsley work very well), and 3 cloves of minced garlic.


Low-fat Variation - reduce flax oil to 2 Tbsp and use add one small zucchini to the recipe.




Lemon Tahini Salad Dressing
2 Tbsp Essential Balance oil (optional)
¼ cup lemon or lime juice (fresh squeezed is best)
1/3 cup tahini
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
1 cup water
¼ cup soy sauce
2 Tbsp agave syrup or other sweetener
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1.   Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix on high speed for a few seconds.  If you don’t have a blender, place ingredients in a jar and shake well.
2.   Refrigerate until using.



Walnut Sunflower Dressing



This dressing is a staple in our home. It uses minimal oil, with maximum nutrition.


2 Tbsp Essential Balance or flaxseed oil (optional)
2     Tbsp lemon or lime juice (fresh squeezed is

2     Tbsp balsamic or other vinegar
2     Tbsp tahini
1/4  cup walnuts 
1/4  cup sunflower seeds
1     cup parsley, coarsely chopped
2     Tbsp nutritional yeast
1     cup water
2     Tbsp Braggs

1     tsp evaporated cane juice
2     cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste


Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix on high speed for a few seconds. Refrigerate until using. 








Peanut Dressing


This dressing is great for oriental-style salads and salads with steamed yams. I opt for organic peanut butter as peanuts tend to be heavily sprayed.



1/2  cup organic peanut butter
3/4  cup water
1     Tbsp sesame oil
3     Tbsp soy sauce
3     Tbsp rice vinegar
1     tsp chili sauce
1     Tbsp agave syrup
1     Tbsp grated ginger


Mix peanut butter with a little water. Slowly add the rest of the water, stirring constantly.


Add the rest of the ingredients. Stir well.








Tomato Miso Dressing


1 Tbsp light miso

1 Tbsp tamari
2 cups tomatoes, chopped
1 Tbsp  Vega oil (optional)
1/4 cup tahini
1 clove garlic
4 dates

1 cup water

1 Tbsp ground flaxseed

1 Tbsp fresh basil or 1 tsp dried


Combine ingredients in a blender and blend on high speed until creamy. Refrigerate until using.




Sesame Dressing


2     Tbsp sesame oil
2     Tbsp olive oil
2     Tbsp Braggs or tamari sauce
1/4  cup rice vinegar
1-2  tsp agave syrup


Place all ingredients in a jar and shake well. Refrigerate until using.







Coconut Mayonnaise


2     cups young coconut meat (meat from 2 young

2     Tbsp coconut water
2     Tbsp lemon or lime juice
2     Tbsp agave syrup 
1/2  tsp salt
1/4  cup organic canola oil


Purée all of the ingredients, except the oil, in a high-powered blender, and blend until smooth.
Add the oil in a steady stream, while continuing to blend until emulsified. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.