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Garbanzo Beans and Lemon Vinaigrette with Ground Flax Seeds

19 Jul

Garbanzo Beans and Lemon Vinaigrette with Ground Flax Seeds

I’ve been revising my salad dressings to be more nutritious and making the dressing stick to the salad ingredients instead of sinking to the bottom of the bowl after tossing the salad. The addition of the ground flax seeds thickens the dressing which helps to keep on the salad ingredients coated with the dressing.

As a relatively new vegan (almost 3 years) I’m always trying to include more plant protein in my food. Garbanzo beans and flax seeds both have more protein than other kinds of beans and seeds.

I prepared the salad dressing first and let it sit in the bowl while I prepared the following salad ingredients in a bowl. Following this order allows the flax seed to thicken the dressing.

Vegan Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette with Flax Seeds    ©2015 Afroditi Katsikiis

Vegan Salad ©2015 Afroditi Katsikis

Vegan Lemon Vinaigrette with Ground Flax seeds 

½     cup olive oil

3      Tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice

1       Tbsp. red wine vinegar

3      garlic cloves, finely diced

1      tsp. dried oregano

¼    tsp. fresh ground pepper

1.5  Tbsp. ground flax seeds

Put all the ingredients in a bowl and whip them up using a whisk. Let sit for 5 minutes before using it. Give it a few whisks just before putting on the salad. I used less than 1/8 cup dressing on this salad.


3  large leaves of romaine lettuce leaves torn into bite sized pieces, do NOT cut with a knife

1  large tomato cut into bite–sized pieces

3  thin slices of sweet onion, cut in half

1  cup of home cooked garbanzo beans

2  tablespoons of chopped parsley

Place all the ingredients in a bowl large enough to toss the salad with dressing. Two to three tablespoons was enough for me. The salad recipe makes enough for one person as a main dish but probably enough for two or three people as a side dish.

Half way through eating this salad I remembered half an avocado left in the fridge from yesterday. Too late to take another photo and if it’s not in the photo how can I put it in the salad recipe? These are other ingredients I wished I had available today: roasted sweet peppers, kalamata olives, sliced almonds, or possibly some fire roasted eggplant.  


 ©2015 afroditi katsikis


Eggplant Salad

4 Dec
Eggplant Salad and Garbanzo bean salad, surrounded by tomatoe wedges and parsley garnish.

Eggplant Salad and Garbanzo Bean Salad, surrounded by tomato wedges and parsley garnish.

This is great lunchtime meal, especially in hot weather.  Sometimes I spread the eggplant salad on whole grain sandwich bread, add fresh from the garden sliced tomatoes, a thin slice of sweet onion and a leaf of romaine lettuce: vegan sandwich!  Other times, I make it explicitly to be used as a dip for raw veggies so I blend up all the ingredients.  Either way, it’s a big hit at potlucks and it goes very fast!


1 large eggplant

1/4 cup grated onion

1/8 cup red wine vinegar

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

2 cloves garlic, pressed

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup parsley chopped fine

salt and pepper to your taste

2 or 3 leaves fresh basil, chopped fine

I’ve cooked the eggplant several different ways and all worked just fine.  The traditional method is to lightly oil the outside of the eggplant with a little extra virgin olive oil and place it on a roasting pan and baked it in the oven at 350 degrees or bake it in my barbecue .  I’ve also steamed it in my crock-pot by putting a small rack in the crock-pot with  enough water in the bottom just below the rack level.

Neither of these baking methods changed it at all.  However, if I steam it, I don’t peel it when I start putting it together with the other ingredients.  The cooking time varies depending on how big it is so you have to start checking it after about 20 minutes if it’s small. If you bake it, the skin gets tougher and peeling is best because the side it rests on while cooking gets very thick and dried out slightly.

If I’m serving it as a salad, I cut it up in small chunks and mash it with a potato masher.  Add all the other ingredients and stir it up.

If I want to use it exclusively as a dip or spread, I place all the ingredients in a blender [NOTE: if you are using the blender method,  the onion can be chopped coarsely instead of grated] on the chop setting for a minute or so then turn up the blender speed to the maximum setting for a couple of minutes.  Pour it into a bowl and start dipping your veggies.

Lemon Parsley Rice

27 Feb

Lemon Parsley Rice

This is one of those recipes that just happened one night.  I was hungry for greek dolmathes (rice and pine nut stuffed grape leaves) but didn’t have any grape leaves!  I also had some leftover basmati rice and asparagus.

Lemon Parseley Rice is perfect with steamed asparagus!

1 cup basmati rice (cooked)

¼ cup parsley, chopped

4 green onions, chopped

2 cloves garlic, smashed

a few grinds of freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup fresh lemon juice (juice from one small lemon)

1/8 cup extra virgin olive oil

dash of salt

2 tablespoons sesame seeds (optional)

Mix lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic in a small bowl.  Warm up the basmati rice in a microwave (warm not hot).  Add chopped parseley, sesame seeds and green onion and toss with the lemon dressing. 

It was perfect with the asparagus!

Garbanzo Bean Salad

13 Oct

Garbanzo beans are my favorite beans.  This was my lunch today but could easily be served as a salad with dinner.  Most of the time I’m the only one eating this and make it so that it will store well in the refrigerator so when I make it at home, I don’t add the tomatoes and cucumbers to the salad, I add them to my plate. 

If I’m making it for a potluck or serving it for guests, I add chopped tomatoes and or chopped cucumber and serve it chilled.  If I’m making it for me to be eaten over the next few days, I add the tomatoes and cucumbers just before I eat the salad. Left in the refrigerator with tomatoes make the tomatoes sort of melt and I don’t like them like that.  And the cucumbers, they get kind of rubbery after a night in the frig. 

What makes the salad when the tomatoes and cucumbers are added is their combination of textures with the spicy sauce.

Garbanzo Bean Salad

Place these ingredients in a bowl and toss ingredients:

2 cups cooked garbanzo beans

1 cup parsley chopped fine

1 cup chopped green onions (1 bunch)


1 cup chopped tomatoes

1 cup chopped cucumbers

Garlic Tahini Sauce

Place these ingredients in a bowl and mix well:

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

2 tbsp raw tahini

1 tbsp crushed garlic

juice of one lemon (3-4 tbsp juice)

½ tsp lemon zest

¼ tsp finely chopped fresh basil

¼ teaspoon finely chopped fresh oregano

8 – 12 twists of a pepper grinder set on fine

salt to taste

Mix the garlic tahini sauce ingredients until well incorporated and then pour it over the garbanzo beans and stir.

If you are good in the kitchen and can chop quickly, this should only take about 10 minutes to prepare.

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