James Holmes

Cucumber, Tomato, & Arugula Salad with Roasted Eggplant [VAAB]

Filed By James Holmes | August 24, 2012 2:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: Roasted Eggplant, VAAB, Vegan Ain't All Bad, Vegan Cooking, Vegan Recipes

Cucumber-Tom-Arugula-Salad.jpgI have a confession - I'm not a huge fan of salads. That's right. I am vegan, and I don't like salads. It does happen. However, I am rather pleased with this one that I threw together on Tuesday.

I can't really explain the salad thing. I think it stems from a feeling that no matter what is in the salad or how much I have, I always still feel hungry. I find nothing disgusting about a bowl of greens and veggies, it is just rarely my first choice.

This feeling escalated in college when I was a vegetarian eating mostly out of the dining halls where my choices were cheese pizza, cheese sandwiches, pasta, or salad. I got sick of all of them.

These days, when a salad feels appropriate, it usually arrives in bag form and the dressing from a bottle. It works.

But with my CSA share comes the push to try new things and force myself not to waste any of the great local produce I receive weekly. And the veggie I have the greatest trouble using? Cucumbers.

Past summers, I feel I have wasted half of the cucumbers. So I have been on mission this year to use them as snacks or give them away - and yes, have more salads.

Combined with the amazing fresh tomatoes and only a small amount of greens, I find the bulk of the salad more satisfying. And the dressing is a simple vinaigrette that took just a couple minutes to whip up.

I also received eggplant and peppers with the share this week, so I went the simple route and roasted the two together in the oven with some garlic.

The third dish in my meal was a recipe I used in a previous post - Boiled Green Beans & Potatoes. I don't feel it completely meshed with the other two dishes, but it was what I had to work with.

If I had not had potatoes from my share that I needed to use, I probably would have used some wild rice to round things out.

Check out the recipes after the jump. Give them a try and let me know your result or if you have any suggested alteration. Enjoy

Cucumber, Tomato, & Arugula Salad

  • 4-5 cucumbers, cut into 1/2 in. cubes
  • 4 tomatoes, diced
  • 3 cups arugula, torn into bite sized pieces with large stems removed
  • 1 small red onion, thinly diced
  • 1 tbls chopped fresh parsley

Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 2-3 tbls balsamic vinegar
  • 2-3 tbls lime juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 large pinch of salt

In a large bowl combine salad ingredients and toss to combine. In a separate bowl, whisk together dressing ingredients, taste to adjust the level of salt.

Pour dressing over salad, toss to coat, cover and refrigerate at least an hour. Drain off extra liquid before serving.

Roasted Eggplant and Peppers

  • 2 eggplants, cubed
  • 1 red bell pepper cut into medium strips
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 olive oil
  • 3 tbls balsamic vinegar
  • Heavy grind black pepper
  • 1 large pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 450.

Place eggplant in a large bowl, cover with water and 2-3 tbls salt. Cover and let set at least 30 mins. This is to pull some of the bitter flavor out of the eggplant. Drain and rinse thoroughly.

Toss all ingredients together and place in baking dish uncovered on the center rack of the oven. Roast for 30 mins, stirring half way through, until eggplant is just translucent and peppers are soft with some caramelization.

Goes great over rice or as a side.


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