Last week I was reunited with my best friend, Josh, after a year apart! He’s vegan, so of course we prepared a vegan feast to celebrate his homecoming. For the salad course of our mediterranean-esque menu, we turned to Ina Garten for some help. After some tweaking, this was our adapted ingredients list, meant to serve nine people in fairly small servings:
2.5 cans drained artichoke hearts
4 tbsps freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 tsps whole grain mustard
1/2 cup white balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
1/2 cup capers, drained
1 cup red onion, minced
1 cup fresh parsley leaves, chopped
3 roasted red peppers, cut into large pieces
2 tbsps chili powder
1 cup spinach, chopped
We began by preheating the oven to 350 F, and then tossing the artichokes in a combination of EVOO and salt/pepper to taste. We then laid them out flat along a baking pan, and into the oven they went!While the artichokes were ‘roasting’ (is it possible to roast something that has been canned?) we set to work on the dressing. This dressing is absolutely delicious, and I’ll definitely be using it more in the future! We combined the shallots, mustard, white balsamic (only 4 tbsps at this point), chili powder and lemon juice, and then blended the mixture for about five seconds.
We then added the basil, and blended that until it was pureed into a nice consistency. Then we added 1 cup EVOO to the mix, all while blending. Once everything was blended, we set the vinaigrette aside. After 30 minutes, we removed the artichokes from the oven.
I don’t know if I would really call those roasted, but they were definitely delicious! Especially the burnty crisp parts. After letting them cool for about 10 minutes, we combined the artichokes, vinaigrette and the remaining ingredients in a large bowl, and left it to sit until the dinner party! The salad had about 90 minutes, which was perfect to allow the flavours to meld. A super easy, healthy and delicious salad, perfect for hot summer nights!