Silky raw “fried” avocados, the best summer produce, and a creamy low fat vegan dressing come together to make this yummy salad.
Earlier this week, I went to TJ Maxx in search of some work dresses and running gear. Save for an eight dollar pair of shorts, I found neither work clothes nor sweat-in clothes. That’s how it usually is at TJ Maxx-y type places, you either find armfuls of cute outfits or nothing at all. This was a nothing-at-all day.
I didn’t leave totally empty handed, because I wandered over to their random foodstuffs section and kinda hit the jackpot. Saigon cinnamon, Himalayan salt, peanut butter powder. And best of all — hemp hearts! I usually don’t buy hemp hearts because they are rather pricey, but these were so discounted that I just had to have them. Funnily enough, a few days later, I came across this article in Bon Appetit, all about how our TJ Maxx food purchases are mostly fueled by FOMO.
Guilty. But not too guilty because those are ingredients that I really want anyways, and can definitely put to good use. Big Lots also has an excellent food section, the Bob’s Red Mill stuff is cheaper than it is anywhere else.
I was very pleased with my hemp-heart purchase. Paired with avocado, they create a lovely crust — a little crunchy, a little soft, very reminiscent of fried avocado. Only better, because I dislike hot avocado.
Another purchase I was happy with this week was a bag of ground cherries from our Saturday farmer’s market. Ground cherries are relatively new to me, but I’m already crushing hard. They look delicate beneath their gossamer shell, but they are actually firm and juicy. The papery husk peels back to reveal a small golden fruit that tastes like pineapple and honey. I just cannot get enough of all this wonderful summer produce. Also, when you’re peeling them, they look like little Golden Snitches.
I did have a little problem while I was shooting the cherries, though. They are toxic to cats, and Clover likes to poke her little nose whatever I’m doing. I kept having to shoo her away, and finally I gave up let her play outside so she would leave me alone. Then she climbed a tree, and looked cute doing that, so I stopped taking pictures of food and started taking cat videos. Which defeated the whole purpose of letting her out to play. In the end, I just gave her her lunch a little bit early. As a new cat mama, I’m learning that the feline-human relationship is hierarchical — and we’re on the bottom.
For best results, make the dressing a few hours (or even 1 day) prior to serving. This allows the flavors to mellow and mingle. If your strawberries are extra sweet, you might may want to omit the maple syrup. This dressing lasts about a week in the fridge, and makes way more than is necessary for this salad -- so you'll be able to enjoy it on other summer goodies as well.
This recipe can be eaten as a main meal for one, or as a side salad to share between two.
- 1 avocado
- 1 peach, sliced
- 1/3 cup ground cherries, husks removed prior to measuring
- 3 tbsp hemp hearts
- pinch of salt
- 1 ear of corn, shucked
- 3-4 handfuls of greens of choice
- 1 lb strawberries, hulled
- 1 medium carrot, peeled
- 2/3 cup canned northern white beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 2 tbsp sriracha
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 3/4 tsp microplane-grated fresh garlic
- salt to taste
- Combine all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Makes just over 2 1/2 cups
- Turn on the broiler. Once hot, place the corn directly under the heat. Cook for for 12 minutes, turning the corn every 3-4 minutes. Allow to cool and strip off the kernels.
- Combine the hemp hearts and the salt.
- Slice the avocado into 8 pieces. Gently roll in the hemp hearts to coat.
- Combine the greens, the peaches, the avocado, the corn, and the ground cherries in a bowl. Drizzle with dressing.