Sesame Soy Asian Inspired Vinaigrette

This is my go to dressing. This recipe can be vegan friendly if maple syrup or another liquid sweetener like agave is used. It can also be a raw dressing depending on your ingredients. If making this for someone with gluten issues, please insure you use gluten free tamari/soy sauce, AND gluten free vinegar.

Ingredients:

1 cup grape-seed oil or extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup sesame seed oil*
2 1/2 tablespoons whole sesame seeds
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 – 1 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground is best
2-4 tablespoons honey or liquid sweetener of choice**(see notes)
Ginger***(see notes)
Directions:

In a large bowl (high sided works best), add in your vinegar, soy sauce, and honey or other sweetener. Slowly whisk in 1/2 cup of oil. This should take 1-2 minutes of vigorous whisking. The trick is to make a dressing and not oily vinegar, there is a difference. Once you have 1/2 cup of oil in, try your sauce and if desired add the rest of the oil. At this point if you’re using it, whisk in the sesame oil as well. Once all your oil is whisked in, add your extra flavors or extra sweetener if desired. I used whole sesame seeds and black peppers. Stir in and you are done!

To store this dressing use a mason jar or repurposed glass jar with a tight fitting lid OR use a VERY well cleaned salad dressing bottle, I like the ones with the caps on the lid that restricts the amount that comes out at one time. In the fridge this will last for weeks, maybe a month or so I have never tried it that long. Before using, shake really well to re-emulsify and you’re ready to go.

*If you do not want to use or don’t have access to sesame oil, you can substitute it with regular oil or leave out entirely.

**If you are vegan or simply do not use honey, feel free to use maple syrup or agave. If neither appeal to you, try making a simple syrup by boiling 1/4 cup water with 2 tablespoons sugar. Whisk well to ensure no grainy texture. Once cooled, substitute this in for honey. Start with 1 tablespoon and try it from there as this changes the flavor.

***If you want to add a ginger flare to this dish, use a microplane or fine tooth grater and grate some ginger into the bowl. I would suggest 1/2 – 1 tablespoon. Whisk this in with the sesame seeds. Optionally you can add other flavors such as fresh garlic or chili flakes to change the flavor.

PLEASE TAKE NOTE: If you are making this and/or cooking for someone with gluten allergies or celiacs disease. Make sure to purchase ingredients that are certified gluten free, and clean your utensils very well. Better safe than sorry.

Nutritional information is per tablespoon, Thanks!

Raw Dessert Balls: Coconut, Almond, Chocolate

Ingredients:

135g almonds soaked overnight
2 tablespoons sesame seeds
heavy pinch salt
2-3 tablespoons honey
2-5 dates (or any other dried fruit to thicken)
2 1/2 tablespoons raw cocoa nibs (or 2 tablespoons cocoa powder)
1/4 – 1/3 cup coconut chips (or flakes) for rolling

Directions:

Start the day before by weighing out about 135grams or about 1 cup of raw almonds, soak them in 2-3 times their volume of water for 8-12 hours and drain. Pat dry and store in fridge until needed.

In a food processor, add your almonds, salt, cocoa nibs or powder, and sesame seeds. Pulse until it forms a crumbly mixture. Add your pitted dates, and pulse again until it starts to form into balls. If using honey Add your honey, and pulse until mixture resembles sticky dough. When you squeeze a little in your hand, it should hold its form no problem. If mixture is too dry add more honey or dried fruit, if too wet, add some extra sesame seeds.

Take mixture 1 tablespoon or so at a time and roll into balls. Take coconut chips or another topping of choice and roll each ball into the topping.

If you want the balls to be firm you can freeze for a few hours, refridgerate for 6 or more hours. Or you can put them in the dehydrator for 4-8 hours at 110 degrees until they reach your desired texture.

Enjoy! =-D

Prep time: 10-20 minutes Cook time: Varied Serves: 18 balls

Nutrition: 1 serving (18 servings)
86 calories, 2g protein, 9g carbs, 5g fat (transfat free)
high in vitamin E, Omega-6 fatty acids, and poly/monounsaturated fats

allergies: nuts, honey, chocolate, sesame seeds
Vegetarian and raw food friend: veganize by replacing the honey with agave or more dried fruit