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Sunday, December 26, 2010

Caesar Salad and Spicy Mustard Sauce

When traveling on business to San Francisco, I had the good fortune to be able to have time to visit Cafe Gratitude. I sampled appetizers and had a Caesar salad for the main course, and it was delicious. The capers really made the dish and I promised that I would attempt the dish at home. Yesterday, we spent the better part of the day at my Grandparent's house and I brought the salad for my dinner.

Caesar Dressing
1/2 tsp Spicy Mustard Sauce (recipe below)
6 whole Black Peppercorns
1 small clove Garlic
1/2 cup Macadamia Nuts
1/4 cup water
juice from one Lemon
salt to taste

Put all ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until they are very well combined. The peppercorns should be pulverized and blended well.

Spicy Mustard Sauce
(to be used very sparingly)
1 tsp Mustard Seeds
2 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp Agave
pinch Salt

Put the mustard seeds in a spice or coffee grinder and grind until fine. Stir in the other ingredients. This is really intended to be added to dressings and sauces, not to be enjoyed straight as it is overpowering. It blew out my palate after I had it with slices of quinoa flatbread, lettuce and sauerkraut. I couldn't taste the sauerkraut after the first helping. I would recommend adding to a little whipped cashews or macadamia nuts if you want a mustard spread for flat breads.

Caesar Salad
1 head Romaine, chopped
1 shredded carrot
1/4 c. rough chopped almonds
Caesar Dressing

I put the capers and Caesar dressing in small bowls and let people decide the amounts they want on their salad. Some people dislike capers (I don't understand it, but I'll respect it). The almonds and sprouts add some additional nutrition and texture, but aren't necessary.

I don't understand why people say it's hard to stay vegan over the holidays. Perhaps I'd understand it a bit more if I had any inclination to have dairy. Staying dessert free on the other hand...I made two gluten free vegan lemon pies and didn't follow my own advice so today I had a bit of a sugar hangover. At least it makes it easier to stick to the diet going forward!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday! Annie enjoyed her new toys, and we had some fun family moments. There were some awkward and crazy moments too (like when Annie got in a fight with one of the 7 dogs in the house - twice). Seems like there was a dog or two per family segment for about an hour of our visit. It felt like 12 hours. Don't worry, everyone left full and injury free.

Baby "O" really liked Thomas the Train Engine!

My family's beautiful and sweet Bernese Mountain Dog
(definitely not the dog Annie fought with)

Annie with part of her toy stash. Notice the protective
paw over HER reindeer. 100% attitude.


  1. Yum that caesar salad looks totally delicious! I really want to try it :)
    Hope you had a wonderful Christmas

  2. I'm one of those caper-haters! So I'll leave them on the side. I've been looking for new dressing recipes, thanks.

    Annie is a force to be reckoned with huh?

  3. greenandjuicy - I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! Happy Holidays!

    Aimee - Yes. They don't call terriers "terrors" for nothing and it looks like she has enough to fall into that category. She's been attacked by a big dog, so now she over compensates by growling. Not smart, but understandable. She and my cousin's cocker spaniel just didn't like each other from the minute he walked in the house. She had it coming the first time, but the second time she was being really sweet with my other cousin's chihuahua mix and got broadsided. It was just loud - no actual contact.