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My Comfort Salad (WIAW)

Before we get to a recipe,  I’m joining in on the fun little party we all, for some reason, adore. Sharing my day of eats from Tuesday, while pretending its Wednesday. Thanks Jenn, Arman and Laura for all the party planning. 

WHAT-I-ATE-WEDNESDAY-NEW-BUTTON-PEAS-AND-CRAYONS

Breakfast:

I found smoked salmon on sale! Say what? That has never happened. Obviously I had to jump on the opportunity to get a little fancy. Smoked salmon and cream cheese is something I’ve only had a few times, but enough to know that I am definitely a fan.

smoked salmon

Smoked salmon + cream cheese + red onion on a whole grain english muffin (freshly baked from a local bakery) + strawberries

If only I had some capers.

Although – I’ve asked this probably a trillion times yet still can’t remember – what the heck are capers?

Lunch:

Sometimes – actually fairly often – I just have a huge piece of baking for lunch. It’s one of my comfort go-tos. Always rounded out with an americano and piece of fruit. 

big cookie

Monster Chocolate Chip Cookie + Decaf Americano

IMG_1336

Apple (recycled pic)

Dinner:

And now what I’m really wanting to share with you guys.

favourite salad1

To me, comfort food doesn’t only mean potatoes and meat and super hearty gravy. It also means big hearty bowls of all my favorite vegetables, tempeh, and a drenching of delicious thick dressing.

I have nostalgic memories of my mother and I getting bowls just like this from my favorite restaurant when she would visit me. We’d get big take out brown boxes and take them back to my apartment, pour some wine, and slowly dig through them while watching a movie.  Funny how memories can have just as much to do with comfort food as the actual ingredients do. 

favourite salad5

It has been my favorite salad combination ever since. The starchiness of the sweet potatoes, the meatiness of the tempeh, the heartiness of the broccoli and beets – all stirred together in the most unreal sesame ginger dressing. I just love it when it gets all super mixed together and ugly looking in one big bowl on my lap. Mmm.

I use my typical tempeh marinade that I showed you here. Though Sarah has another version that is slammin. 

favourite salad4

I’ve had this salad for dinner or lunch more times than I can count in the past couple of weeks. You saw it here…and maybe here again…starring as my typical date night dinner for one. 

As we know, salads and recipes don’t make much sense. Follow the guidelines as much as you’d like, and then focus on the dressing.  I’m usually super awful and lazy at making actual dressings, but this one I did for real. #proud 

Sweet Potato, Beet, Tempeh Salad with Sesame Ginger Vinaigrette
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Salad
  1. 1 small sweet potato, cubed and roasted in coconut oil
  2. Broccoli florets, roasted
  3. 1 small beet, roasted and cubed
  4. Marinated tempeh steaks, sautéed and cubed
  5. Fresh or thawed peas
  6. Nuts and seeds of choice to top (optional)
  7. Handfuls of salad greens of choice
Dressing
  1. 4 Tbsp rice vinegar
  2. 2 Tbsp water
  3. 2 Tbsp miso (soybean paste)
  4. 1/2 packet stevia or 1 Tbsp maple syrup
  5. 1 Tbsp minced fresh ginger
  6. 1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  7. 2 tsp olive oil
  8. 1 tsp sesame oil
In advance
  1. Pre roast beet by wrapping in foil, setting right on oven element, roasting for 45 minutes to 1 hour and then slipping off skin. Let cool and cut into cubes.
  2. Pre marinate tempeh and let sit 30 minutes to over night. Lightly sauté in a non stick skillet until moisture is absorbed. Cut into cubes.
  3. Combine all dressing ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth.
  4. Peel sweet potato and cut into large bite size chunks. Cut broccoli into small florets. Spread both onto a well greased pan, sprinkle with salt, and roast for 20 minutes, turning over half way in between.
To assemble
  1. Fill a bowl with spinach or greens of choice, throw in roasted sweet potato, beet, broccoli, thawed peas, tempeh and nuts/seeds. Drizzle on dressing. Give it all a good stir so everything is well covered. Dig in.
Notes
  1. Roast / Prepare/ Chop as much of the ingredients as you would like. Store whatever is unused in the fridge for a week of salad fun.
  2. Dressing makes enough for 4
mylittletablespoon http://mylittletablespoon.com/
Oh gosh I almost forgot. 

Dessert/Snack:

I’ve been downing this fruit/spice cake I had leftover from Christmas. Really it just tastes like carrot cake (aka amazing). I make a quick cream cheese “icing” by mixing 1 Tbsp cream cheese + 2 Tbsp plain yogurt + stevia. Soooooo good.

fruit cake

Spice cake + yogurt/cream cheese icing + dark chocolate 

Tell me,

What is one of your favorite comfort foods? Do you think it is partly because there is a fond memory attached to it?

Smoked Salmon fan? Maybe you can remind me what a caper is…

37 COMMENTS

  1. Anna-Marie @BeautyandtheBeets | 9th Mar 16

    I love your dressing- I wold just sub out the oil for tahini and veggie brith and I am all set for that salad!! I feel like I can taste those broccoli and beets through the pictures! Happy Wednesday
    Anna-Marie @BeautyandtheBeets recently posted…New Orleans Eats – What I Ate WednesdayMy Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Tahini and veggie broth – creative substitutions! The tahini especially would go really really well with the other ingredients. Mmmm. Next time.

  2. SuzLyfe (@suzlyfe) | 9th Mar 16

    OMG you breakfast. OMG the cookie. OMG the Salad. I want to be you 😀 Pretty much any salad is a comfort for me. I find comfort in veggies! And beets and sweet potatoes? mmmmmmmmm

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Its sooo nice to be able to take genuine comfort in veggies. I feel sad for those who don’t enjoy the wonders of a good salad.

  3. Marina @ Snackie Bird | 9th Mar 16

    Everything with potato are my comfort food! I ate lots of potatoes at home, but I don’t like cook it for myself? I think it is situation then memories more delicious than food☺️

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Potato anything screams comfort. Funny – I wonder why that is.

  4. Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets | 9th Mar 16

    That giant veggie bowl salad looks divine. Bon appetite.

  5. Kate | 9th Mar 16

    I love salmon but find the texture of smoked salmon to be a bit off putting. The taste is great though!
    I know exactly what you mean about ingredients being nostalgic. Marinara + noodles was my dad’s go-to recipe for us when Mom was working late, so now I always think of him when I have that.
    I love that you added beets… yum!
    Kate recently posted…Sick day eats (WIAW)My Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      I definitely see where you are coming from with the texture. Like sushi – definitely something you don’t want to be surprised with when taking a bite.
      That’s a wonderful memory with your dad. Food can be so powerful.

  6. kyrabocha | 9th Mar 16

    Mmm. Dying. I’m really hoping I still have my tub of miso paste in the fridge. I think my mom wanted to throw it out because it was taking up space.
    Comfort bowls… why do we all seem to just love the same things? There is something so intrinisically satisfying about a big warm bowl of roasted vegetables, I think.
    This day of eating of yours looked fabulous. You are making me crave chocolate chip cookies! 🙂
    kyrabocha recently posted…Eating for Beauty?My Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Noooo! Not the miso!!!

  7. Sarah @ Bucket List Tummy | 9th Mar 16

    Yum! You know I’m on board with this power bowl – tempeh, sweet potato and beets – there of my favorite things! I’m a huge ginger fan so I may need to try this dressing! I am positively a smoked salmon fan – anything salmon, sign me up.
    Sarah @ Bucket List Tummy recently posted…Coconut Brownie Chip WafflesMy Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Glad to hear it. We would eat very well together. You make the waffles, I’ll bring the salmon.

  8. katalysthealth | 9th Mar 16

    Nooooo salmon for me. I don’t do fish very well. Bad experience! Maybe one day I’ll try it again 🙂
    That dinner bowl looks so dang good! So many flavors and so colorful!!
    katalysthealth recently posted…WIAW 3.9.16My Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Uhhh oh. Bad fish experiences are nooooo fun.

  9. Emily Swanson | 9th Mar 16

    WOW, that fruit cake is still good? Did you take it out of the freezer? I’ve never had tempeh, but the way you prepare all of it looks SOOO delicious. And that cookie? Do you have a recipe? :))) <3 you Cora. Have a precious day, friend! By Christ Jesus, Em
    Emily Swanson recently posted…Why Comparison Only Steals Joy (WIAW)My Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Hahaha yes I had been storing it in the freezer – so it was just a quick unthaw and heat up and was as good as new. Tempeh is absolutely wonderful – you should give it a try! So much heartier than tofu. Wish I could say that cookie was mine – but that was all a local bakery’s doing 🙂

  10. Heather@hungryforbalance | 9th Mar 16

    This salad really is comfort food in a bowl! Bananas are one of my favorite comfort foods now, but when I was a kid, it was bashed potatoes and peas. ALL THE CARBS!!
    Heather@hungryforbalance recently posted…Friday Favorites #42: Weekly ReadsMy Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Ohhh yeah mashed potatoes and peas. Pure childhood memories right there.

  11. Joleen @ Joleen Cuisine | 9th Mar 16

    That salad looks DIVINE.

  12. Stephanie Leduc | 9th Mar 16

    I love those kinds of salads, however I’ve never made my own! I always buy them at vegan/vegetarian restaurants, pure laziness on my part. I’m loving the likes of that lunch honestly, that cookie looks amazing. It happens to me where I eat some type of huge bakery food in the afternoon and am never hungry for supper, perhaps I should be pushing this little snack to lunch hehe. I love smoked salmon, my dad actually smokes his own and I just cannot get enough of it! I’ve never bought smoked salmon as I am sure it wouldn’t compare to his. As for capers, I guess it grows.. on a plant…. That is all I know, haha.
    Stephanie Leduc recently posted…What I ate Wednesday: Am I Hungry or Bored?My Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      I will admit – even though I remake many of the salad bowls I have at restaurants – they are always still so much better at the restaurant. Sigh. So I guess I’ll still continue spending the money to treat myself (and just have my own in between splurges).
      Oh man! Well if you dad makes his own – why would you take yourself down to the store bought stuff?! I’m sure there would be NO comparison. So jealous.

  13. Faith VanderMolen | 9th Mar 16

    Yum to everything!! I love treating myself to a dessert for a meal. So good and satisfying!
    Faith VanderMolen recently posted…Vegan Toasted Coconut Chocolate Chunk BrowniesMy Profile

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      Nothing beats it!

  14. Ruthie | 10th Mar 16

    Cookie for lunch? OH YES. That one looked spectacular, to boot. 🙂

    • Cora | 10th Mar 16

      It was!! Classic chocolate chip – can’t beat it

  15. Ellie | 10th Mar 16

    My comfort foods usually stem from a time when I was STARVING and ate something and it just turned my mood and energy around that it is now something I look to for that good feeling. PB&J, potato latkes and dumplings come to mind. I made tempeh bacon last week and OMG SO GOOD! Tempeh lasts forever as well, I think I had that package for the better part of a year!
    Ellie recently posted…WIAW: Recipe for Microwave Chocolate Banana-Oat BreadMy Profile

    • Cora | 11th Mar 16

      Definitely – they are probably all connected to some way our mood was changed and we felt happy. Whether it was the food or not it does’t matter – our bodies remember.
      Baha you are worse then me! Though this is good to know that it lasts for that long!

  16. chasetheredgrape | 10th Mar 16

    Smoked salmon all the way! It’s something I always order when I am out for breakfast – and don’t even get me started when I see that bad boy on a breakfast buffet! Haha – I load up!
    For me, oats (or porridge as us scots call it) gives me so much comfort and wonderful memories of my grandad. Especially when I serve it traditionally – plain in a pool of milk – ah bliss!
    chasetheredgrape recently posted…5 Top Tips on a Tuesday – How to be the woman you know you areMy Profile

    • Cora | 11th Mar 16

      Baha nice! If I saw smoked salmon on a buffer I’d be a goner.
      Mmmm your traditional porridge sounds like perfect medicine for the soul, and I love that it reminds you of your grandad. That’s special.

  17. gracefulcoffee | 11th Mar 16

    That cookie looks AMAZING!! A sweet treat I love is my grandma’s homemade banana bread. I’ve made it with her ever since I was little and have such fond memories in the kitchen with her <3

    Blessings,
    Edye // Gracefulcoffee
    gracefulcoffee recently posted…How To Enjoy SchoolMy Profile

    • Cora | 11th Mar 16

      Ahhh that is a sweet, sweet memory. Anything made with the grandma would mean comfort to me.

  18. Aubrey @ Clusterforked | 11th Mar 16

    That salad looks amazing, that dressing sounds right up my street! Go too comfort food is probably oatmeal with raisins, apple, cinnamon and brown sugar just because it is so warming and easy to make and my mum would always make a big pot on winter mornings before school. Smoked salmon is the bomb, especially with cream cheese and a little dill.
    Aubrey @ Clusterforked recently posted…WIAW – “Normal Eating”My Profile

  19. Good good links #133 – Let's get living | 13th Mar 16

    […] Sweet Potato, Beet, Tempeh Salad with Sesame Ginger Vinaigrette via My little tablespoon […]

  20. masala girl | 15th Mar 16

    that bowl sounds so. good. i bought a whole bunch or sweet potatoes and purple potatoes last week… and forgot about them! D:

  21. Cindy | 9th Dec 16

    Aaah that spice cake looks awesome! Do you have the recipe for that?!
    Also, I love your salad. Sweet potatoes, beets, and broccoli taste amazing in any form!
    Cindy recently posted…Baking for the Smell of It: Brownie Recipe!My Profile

    • Cora | 9th Dec 16

      I so sadly don’t! It was given to my family last year from a friend. I sure hope we get it again this year. I need to figure out what exactly it is.

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