Vegan since 1975, I decide to answer the question, "What DO you eat?" These posts tell about some meals and recipes my family and I have enjoyed over the years.

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Thursday, April 7, 2011

Condiments--Yummy Piquant Miso Dressing and Eileen's Fuchsia Pickled Onions

Plain rice and beans is all very well, and anyone would be happy to have a bowl of them if they were starving, but if you add a few CONDIMENTS to your meal you might enjoy it a little more.

My boys loved an organic creamy miso dressing that had been available at our grocery store, but then it was discontinued. I tried once before to duplicate it, and it wasn't quite right, but this time they liked it. I also was referencing my memories of another discontinued nutritional yeast dressing which I am missing, so I changed a few of the ingredients to try to mimic that, as well.

The only odd ingredient is guar gum, a vegetable source product that I get from one of my buying clubs. The good thing about guar gum is that it thickens something like a dressing, so that you can add more water and less oil, making it lower in fat. I also used liquid lecithin, which is an emulsifier that helps to distribute the fats in the blended product. I had some flax oil in my refrigerator so I used some of that, too, for its omega 3 content.

You probably could get away with leaving some of those ingredients out (even the water and guar gum) and adjusting the seasonings to your own tastes, but I am going to write this recipe down so I can duplicate it again and again. I'm sure it costs less than the store bought kind.

This dressing could be used on a salad, but we like to have it in the refrigerator as an all-purpose sauce to pour on our food, just like some people love ketchup.

dressing

4 Tbl--light miso
2 Tbls each--olive oil and sunflower oil
1 tsp--flax oil
2 drips--liquid lecithin
1 Tbl--apple cider vinegar
juice of--one lemon
1 inch square--rind of lemon
1--peeled garlic clove
1 Tbl--Roland's Moutarde a L'Ancienne or other dark mustard
1/4 tsp--hot sauce, such as Smokey Serrano or Harry's Habanero
1 tsp--tamari
1/4 tsp--guar gum
1 cup--water
1/4 cup--nutritional yeast flakes
To make the YUMMY PIQUANT MISO DRESSING, blend the following ingredients: Four tablespoons of miso (I used a millet miso, and would suggest a lighter variety miso for this recipe), two tablespoons of olive oil and two tablespoons of sunflower oil, one teaspoon of flax oil, a few drips of liquid lecithin (it pours very slowly at room temperature), one tablespoon apple cider vinegar, juice of one squeezed lemon and about an inch square piece of its rind, one peeled garlic clove, one tablespoon of mustard (I used Roland Moutard a L'Ancienne, a whole mustard seed type of mustard that comes in a crock, but any darker variety mustard would do), a quarter teaspoon of hot sauce (I used Harry's Habanero) and a teaspoon of tamari.

While it is still blending, add in a quarter teaspoon of guar gum and a cup of water. If you don't add the guar gum while everything is moving around in the blender, it will get instantaneously gelatinously clumpy. I then added in a quarter cup of nutritional yeast flakes, which add an appealingly cheesy flavor to the dressing.

If you pour this into a commercial bottle of a similar dressing that your family already likes, maybe they will start to like yours before they know any better. Refrigerate, and it will last a good long time.

Pickled Onions
1--large peeled and chopped red onion
1--jar
enough white vinegar to cover

My friend Eileen Glover made a delicious condiment to give as a gift the other day that involved two ingredients. EILEEN'S FUCHSIA PICKLED ONIONS are a way of preparing red onions so that they become sweet, and lose their unpleasant bite. Just peel and chop up a large red onion, fill a jar with them, and cover them with vinegar. I think Eileen used white vinegar which made an even pinker present than mine. I used apple cider vinegar.

Let the jar sit out on the counter, and by the next day you will have an exciting and pretty pickled onion condiment to liven up your plate. I will refrigerate mine tonight after a day of sitting out, but they may also do well unrefrigerated for several days, or maybe until you use them up. I'll leave that for you to figure out.

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