Something kind of exciting is happening at my office tomorrow and we’re having a little party to celebrate. The first woman to ever leave my company to have a baby is coming back to work! Well, at least I hope she is.
She says she is.
I just haven’t known that many women who actually went back to work after having a baby. Most of the women I know think that they will return, but once they have that baby, they change their mind.
So in honor of this momentous first at Luscious Verde, we’re having a little pot luck and office fun. Our plant manager informed me that New Mom has communicated to him that she’s interested in healthier eating (after having been a friend of the fast food chains for a good long time) and I was more than happy to commit to bringing a huge salad.
But which salad would I pick?
Well, let me tell you about this incredible salad that my cousin makes (actually, my husband’s cousin’s wife). She does catering on a small scale. Lots of salads. It’s got romaine lettuce, tomatoes, corn, scallions (I think), avocado (you can leave that out of course), black beans, and tortilla chips (I recommend the baked ones, or bake them yourself). I never knew what was in her delicious Southwestern dressing, but you could tell that salsa was probably one of the ingredients.
One day, Cousin dropped a bomb on me. She told me that there was Earth Balance in her dressing. I about fell off my chair (if I was sitting, I can’t remember–maybe I just passed out).
I was like, “Why on earth would you put Earth Balance in a salad dressing?” I recommended replacing it with cannellini beans and left it at that, but feared the salad after that day. Which is such a bummer, because it is THAT good.
So tonight, I set about to right this ship. It happened pretty easily. I created a super easy to make, nut free, Vegan Southwestern salad dressing that I believe can replace Cousin’s Earth Balance and salsa salad dressing, and I think it tastes just as good.
Let’s just hope that New Mom actually does return to work tomorrow, and loves the salad as much as I think she will!
Edited to note: There it is! There’s the salad (including my finger in the photo)!
And it tastes exactly like the original dressing. Whoo hoo!
Cheezy Southwestern Dressing
Vegan. Oil-free. Possibly salt-free.
1 16 ounce jar of your favorite salsa (as spicy as you like it, salt free if you can get it)
2 cups alternative milk (if you want a totally nut free dressing, choose soy, rice or oat milk)
1/2-3/4 cup nutritional yeast (depending on how cheezy you like it)
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (if your salsa is not hot to begin with)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
2 tsp dried onion
Place all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth.