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Author Notes: I made this recipe while working at a vegetarian restaurant. It is vegan, gluten-free, alkalizing and full of antioxidants. Fresh spinach and mesclun greens, topped with balsamic-marinated baked tempeh, and a chilled vegetable mixture comprised of blanched organic yellow squash, green beans, broccoli, cauliflower, red bell peppers, carrots, red onions, and roasted eggplant. All tossed in an organic Ruby Red Basil-citrus vinaigrette and sprinkled with sunflower seeds. —Kati224
Serves 12 as a dinner entree
For the Salad
- 3 1/2 pounds tempeh, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 17 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 cup tamari
- 3 tablespoons garlic, minced
- 3 tablespoons mirin
- 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 12 cups yellow squash
- 10 cups brocolli
- 10 cups cauliflower
- 8 cups carros
- 5 cups sweet red bell peppers
- 3 cups green beans, trimmed
- 1 1/2 eggplants, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 cups red onions, thinly sliced
- 24 cups spinach
- 12 cups mesclun greens
- 1 1/2 cups sunflower seeds
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 2/3 cup lemon juice
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1/3 cup packed Ruby Red Basil, chopped finely (Keep any flowers from the basil to garnish)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
- Mix the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, tamari, garlic, mirin, and red pepper flakes together for a marinade for the tempeh. Put tempeh in a large baking pan. Pour marinade over, stir well and let marinate at least a couple hours, if not overnight.
- Bake tempeh at 350 degrees, covered, stirring at least once, about 20 minutes, or until the liquid has been absorbed, but the tempeh is still moist and juicy. Transfer to a new pan and let cool.
- Blanch yellow squash, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, red bell peppers and green beans. Let cool.
- Toss eggplant with olive oil on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast at 400 degrees until tender. Transfer to a new pan and let cool.
- To prepare vinaigrette, whisk all ingredients well.
- Mix cooled blanched vegetables with the eggplant and the thinly sliced red onions. Toss with the vinaigrette.
- Mix spinach and mesclun greens together.
- To serve, place about 3 cups greens on a large plate. Top with 3/4 cups of tempeh chunks and about 3 cups vegetable mixture. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of sunflower seeds. Garnish with a basil flower.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe Using Fresh Basil