June 12th, 2017

Dressing My Salad Avocado Style

Summer is hitting hard this week in the Washington D.C. area. We had such a mild first week of June it almost made me forget what summers here can feel like. The weather flipped so much back into that old summer heat this weekend I could almost hear the theme from Breakfast Club playing in the background … “Don’t you forget about me … don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t”.

Needless to say, we don’t feel like cooking a whole lot around here. Sweating over a hot stove in near 100 degree heat is not my idea of fun, air conditioning or not. That, combined with the baby holes that both Amy and I have found ourselves in, doesn’t leave a lot of time or desire to make a huge involved meal.

Salads are the perfect solution. Throw some greens down, maybe some leftover chicken or rotisserie from the store, tomatoes, cucumbers, shred some sharp cheddar or plop some goat cheese down. And don’t forget those crunchy bits like sliced almonds, crushed peanuts, pickles or candied walnuts. Seriously, whatever is on hand just toss it in that sucker. They’re creative, fresh and, of course, seasonal. So where do recipes come into play?

The dressing, ladies and gentlemen, which some might argue is the star of the salad. We’ve made some salads in our time here at We The Eaters, but very few posts dedicated to the salad dressing itself. There was that one super fresh, green dressing I shared a year ago, still a favorite of mine.

To make up for this fact, and due to our current lack of energy / desire to cook anything too complicated, we’re featuring salad dressings throughout the entire month of June. Trust me, we’re not being complete slackers in the taste department. I whipped up the two avocado dressings below this evening and – whoah – I will be eating some banging salads this week to be sure!

We tend to have avocados on hand all the time. We buy a bag of them at Costco so the ripeness game can get tricky. We go from no ripe avocados to “Oh God…we have to eat a crap load before they all melt to mush!” So whirring them into a dressing is the perfect solution when they all need to be eaten right now. The avocados turn a thin, runny dressing into one that is creamy and “stick to your lettuce” thick. You could throw a half or a whole of these green wonder fruits into just about any dressing to change things up. Not to mention it’s a great way to get the good fat, fiber and nutrients packed into an avocado. Plus, if you’re lactose intolerant or avoiding dairy, you can make a pretty decent ranch like dressing using them to get that creamy base.

Since several avocados in my basket were ripe this weekend, I made two dressings. The first, a cilantro lime, has a Mexican flair and would be great drizzled on top of tacos or slathered onto a sandwich. The second, a sriracha lime, has a bit of Thai inspiration and would be great on a sandwich or used as a dipping sauce. Avocado may not seem like it goes with a Thai dressing, but it helps cut the heat from the chili sauce.

Give them a try! You’ll be happy you’re not eating dressing out of a jar and that you’re not slaving over a hot stove.

Avocado Cilantro Lime Dressing
Thanks to Founding Foodie Amy for curating our awesome Pinterest board! I found inspiration for this one there.

1 whole, ripe avocado, pitted and peeled
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 lime, juiced
1 1/2 oranges, juiced
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 cup cilantro, loosely packed
salt and pepper, to taste

Add all ingredients to a high powered blender, food processor or tall jar/cup for a stick blender. Blend until all is well combined. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. It’s easy to add more sriracha or honey to adjust to your tastes as well! Store in a mason jar in the fridge.

Avocado Sriracha Lime Dressing
I was inspired by this recipe on the Peas & Carrots blog. I adjusted to my tastes – rice vinegar, avocado oil, less honey, more sriracha and garlic – and threw in a whole avocado to cut the heat a bit.

1 whole, ripe avocado, pitted and peeled
1/4 cup avocado oil
4 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 limes, juiced
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons sriracha chili sauce
2 large cloves garlic, pressed or grated
salt and pepper, to taste

Add all ingredients to a high powered blender, food processor or tall jar/cup for a stick blender. Blend until all is well combined. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. It’s easy to add more sriracha or honey to adjust to your tastes as well! Store in a mason jar in the fridge.

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Posted in Dear Diary

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