Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Dairy-free Caeser Dressing

Living with a lactose-intolerant boyfriend has forced me to find various ways of avoiding dairy. You'd be surprised how much processed food have dairy of some kind in it, it's ridiculous. Check out the ingredients on a bag of flavored potato chips the next time you're at the store!

I was happy to discover a restaurant in Ottawa while visiting my mom one weekend called the Green Door Restaurant. It is a buffet style place that is vegetarian/vegan... nice variety, very tasty dishes, very home-y atmosphere that's lovely on a rainy afternoon (or any other time!). They even have their own cookbook, which I promptly bought.

It has the usual tofu stir-fries and veggie lasagnas one would expect, but there have been some surprises, too. One of the most surprisingly tasty recipes I tried was the Caeser dressing. I'd not cooked with silken tofu before and was, quite frankly, skeptical. In educating myself on lactose-intolerance in cooking for B, I've tended to avoid dairy 'alternatives'... they never seem to live up to the real thing. But still, I gave it a shot and I was completely blown away by it. Had I not made it with my own two hands, I'd have sworn there was dairy in it. It was rich, creamy and freakin' delicious.
Caesar Salad
1 head romaine lettuce
1/2 block soft/silken tofu
1 tsp umeboshi paste (this can be found at health food stores, and I'll admit I've not found any other use for it thus far... I suppose you could substitute a bit of vinegar instead)
1 lemon or lime, juiced
1 tsp mustard
1 tbsp oil
2 clove garlic
1/2 cup water (as needed)
1/2 tsp salt

Blend all dressing ingredients in a food processor or blender until creamy and smooth. Adjust water as needed to achieve dressing that flows well. Pour over lettuce and serve with toppings of your choice.

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