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Tuesday
Oct092012

BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING

This seems to be the season of new cookbooks because I have quite a few I want to share with all of you. This recipe hails from the soon to be released cookbook Keys to the Kitchen by Aida Mollenkamp. It arrived on my doorstep shortly after I had a passionate conversation (on my part, of course) over breakfast with Hugh about how important it is for cookbooks to be practical. In a generation where a lot of people lean more towards convenience food, I find it so important to encourage the actual cooking of real foods, which seems most successful when offering approachable, healthful recipes. Of course I love when there are lots of pictures and the design is attractive, (duh) but I really appreciate when the recipes featured are ones you would make for a weeknight dinner, something special when guests come over or a new idea for a sweet treat to have on hand for coffee breaks. Aida's book reminds me of a modern day Joy of Cooking. It's equally, if not more so, a resource as it is a book of recipes. She goes through tools, cuts of meat, pantry staples, ingredient substitutions, quick dinners, and any other question that a cook may come cross in the kitchen. I think it would make a wonderful gift for someone just learning how to cook, or wanting to get the basics down. It is definently text focused, but I find that to be a strength and consistent with the book's title.

I made this salad because I adore tahini dressings. I upped the lemon a bit, added some sunflower seeds as Aida suggested and it was the perfect accompaniment to some grilled albacore tuna. So simple and clean with that "healthy" flavor profile (I may be one of the few who enjoy eating at the cafes in health food stores, but their house salads always seem to have carrots, sunflower seeds and a tahini dressing, yes?). The book comes out on October 24th, but is available for preorder now. Congratulations Aida, it's a gem and a true testament to your hard work. 

BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING // Serves 2-4

Adapted from Keys to the Kitchen by Aida Mollenkamp

This made about twice the amount of dressing I needed but that's ideal for me. It's so nice to have a great dressing on hand for next time I make a salad. I get the ribbons on the carrots and cucumbers with a veggie peeler but I'm sure a mandoline would do a great job as well. 

  • // tahini-honey dressing //
  • 1/2 cup tahini
  • 3 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. honey or agave
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • big pinch of parsley or chives
  • 2/3 cup water
  • salt and fresh ground pepper
  •  

  • 1 large head (7 oz.) butter lettuce, cleaned and dried
  • 1 avocado, pitted, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 persian cucumber, halved and thinly sliced or shaved
  • 1 carrot, grated or shaved
  • 1 cup sprouted (broccoli, pea, sunflower, radish etc)
  • sunflower seeds, optional

Blend all the dressing ingredients in a blender or food processor. Add salt and pepper to taste. 

Rip the lettuce into large pieces and combine it in a large bowl with the avocado, cucumber, carrot and half of the sprouts (saving half for garnish). Toss the salad ingredients with desired amount of dressing. You'll likely have more than you need. Garnish the top with remaining sprouts and sunflower seeds.

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    [...]BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods[...]
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    BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods
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    BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods
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    BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods
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    BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods
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    Response: Dofus Hack
    BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods
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    Response: Dofus Hack
    BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods
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    BUTTER LETTUCE SALAD WITH TAHINI-HONEY DRESSING - SPROUTED KITCHEN - A Tastier Take on Whole Foods
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Reader Comments (47)

After a few days of vacation eating I'm dreaming of a salad like this. Adding this book to my long "wish list". Can't wait to see you next week!

October 9, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Love the combination of the sprouted with the tahini dressing

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike

I agree with you about cookbooks- sounds like a good one to look forward to!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimply Life

That dressing looks so amazing! I can think of a few other salads it would be perfect on.

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAbby@totes delish

I mean I know. I can't stop licking I MEAN STARING at the pages of her book. Ugh. Gorgeous.

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBev Weidner

An absolutely beautiful salad!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMichelle

You had me at tahini, I'm addicted to the stuff. Thanks for giving my salads a new dressing :)

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteradrienne

Thanks for the beautiful post, Sara! You're styling of the salad is absolutely gorgeous!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteraida mollenkamp

Practicality, tahini dressings and cafes at health food stores: all things I love! Beautiful salad, Sara.

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterStacy

This looks like the prefect salad, and it's beautiful to boot! Adding the tahini dressing to my repertoire, and the cookbook to my wishlist...

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney

could it be possible that we were separated at birth?? BEAUTIFUL salad & dressing!!!! THANK YOU:)

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJulia

This salad sounds simple, fresh, and amazing. Love the tahini dressing!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEileen

A friend just forwarded me your blog and I'm so happy to have found it!

Wonderful photos and I completely agree with your philosophy about needing to get back to the root of cooking wholesome food with good ingredients.

Add to that I love anything with tahini and we have a recipe for sucess!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShut Up & Cook

So beautiful and tempting! I think I could eat that combination of lemon, tahini and raw vegetables every single day and never get tired of it.

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

I feel the same way about it being 'cookbook season' - so many to dig into and share. I've been really enjoying Aida's book and I think it is everything you say it is. I can imagine my non-cooking friends picking it up and learning to love cooking. I need to bookmark this salad now!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKasey

Those pictures bring the recipe to life! Lovely.

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMartha Perry

Beautiful salad. The carrot/cucumber curls are lovely.

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterColette @ JFF!

This dressing sounds so good. And what a beautiful salad! I keep hearing such good things about this cookbook, I can't wait to look through it.

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersarah

What a beautiful and simple salad! I love the dressing and of course the always incredible photos!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBeth @ Tasty Yummies

Beautiful! I've never had a salad at a health-food store deli, maybe I should begin doing so :) Sounds like a great cookbook -- I agree that cooking should be simple and accessible for anyone!

October 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSophie - dinnersforwinners

What a beautiful simple salad...gorgeous photos.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTina

As the weather gets colder here in NYC, I start to lose my desire for salads. Suddenly all I want is soup and/or tuna melts. But this recipe made me want to keep up salad making for this fall! Thanks!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAbigail

I'm so happy you posted this recipe...I've been lacking inspiration with all the carrots and cucumbers in my weekly CSA. Can't wait to try this salad!

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJillian

I am SO with you on accessible cookbooks and Aida's is near the top of my wishlist. This salad looks right up my alley.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKathryne

I am so with you on this: the practical, the simple, the accessible. The more I cook, the less interested I am in complicated preparation. It had never occurred to me that those market salads all share those flavors: the tahini dressing, the sunflower seeds, the carrots. It's the classic California hippie salad, isn't it? And I love it, entirely.

October 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKimberley

I am so with you on the tahini - in fact, I'm including it on an upcoming post on supermarket gems because it's just so versatile and such a great flavour booster. I like it as a sauce on roasted cauliflower, but i'm excited to try this!

www.wholesomehedonist.com

October 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWholesome Hedonist

Sara, I couldn't agree more about functional cookbooks! This salad looks wonderful. We've yet to try a tahini dressing, but it's been on the backburner for a while! Thanks for the remdiner.

October 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSonja

such a perfect summary of the book, exactly how I felt about it!

From one lemon & tahini love to another...

October 12, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJeanine

this is exactly what I need to detox from all of the heavy autumn eating I'm already getting in to!

October 12, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdervla @ The Curator

I think you've just described my perfect cookbook!

October 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKathryn / London Bakes

quick question - how long would the salad dressing stay fresh? i often wonder as I often have leftover of homemade dressing. thanks!

October 15, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteranne

@anne - I'd say two weeks in the fridge. Dressings without any dairy typically last a good while!

October 15, 2012 | Registered CommenterSara

we had the salad with tahini dressing last weekend with our last lettuces from the garden and it was super delicious! i LOVE this dressing. thanks for sharing.

www.foodiesgarden.net

October 16, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterfoodiesgarden

Yep. Functional, useful cookbooks! I've been going back through my MS and trying to add info on making things ahead, how long they keep, how to do them differently to suit tastes/preferences ... we all love pretty books, indeed. But how about long-lasting books that you keep turning to over and over throughout the years? I think this way more and more, too.

October 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMegan Gordon

What a gorgeous salad. The dressing sounds amazing. I'm glad the fat free craze is over and salad dressings have fat again.

October 18, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJen

Gorgeous salad --made this last night and it was delish. Definitely a keeper! Thanks for your beautiful writing--I am new to your blog, but your musings and thoughts do resonate with me. Thoroughly enjoyable!

October 19, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAM

Such a stunning salad... especially as the weather turns colder. Love the ribbons of carrot and cucumber.

October 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBrian @ A Thought For Food

Love the dressing! I made it Saturday night, finished it up today. I thought the flavors were very interesting--first you got the honey, then some garlic, then the tahini very strongly. Today, I thought that it had all mellowed out a bit, but it had a slightly bitter aftertaste. Yummy all the same, especially one home-grown butter lettuce with rocket and peppers!

October 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMagdalen

I too am loving Aida's book and all the exciting recipes it contains - love the idea of using tahini in the dressing - and your pics are gorgeous.

October 22, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLucy Lean

I just made your pizza with eggplant and tahini paste the other day... I'm going to use the tahini for this salad tonight!

Kacie

October 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKacie

I made this and I loved the dressing! I'm so glad I had leftovers!

October 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNaomi

Simply beautiful! As any salad should be! I love the idea of ribboning the carrots and cucumber. Ribbons always seem to make things look fancier no?

November 2, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLauren J @ The Barn

Made this tonight, love the dressing! We didn't have sun flower seeds but used pepitas which were sort of weird but had a nice crunch! Thanks!

November 20, 2012 | Unregistered Commentervictoria

This dressing is incredible! My new favourite.

January 18, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHoney Products

Good recipe, but a bit too much water in the dressing, making it pretty runny.. I would add half that amount next time.

March 22, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlexandra

So beautiful and tempting! I think I could eat that combination of lemon, Manuka honey and raw vegetables every single day and never get tired of it.

June 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNeena Poole

okay, so this dressing is totally addicting. I've made it twice this week and had it with different lettuce, big chunks of heirloom tomato, and avocado. killer.

June 15, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnnaliese

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