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Saturday, July 13, 2013

Asparagus, Cabbage and Couscous Salad with Orange Sriracha Vinaigrette

Tis the season of outdoor concerts and movies and evening picnics in the park. It's also the time of year those of us living in the cold climates gain the opportunity to eat more raw food.

This is a fairly simple salad of raw cabbage and asparagus but it gains a bit of heartiness and chewiness from the couscous. The real kick is tossing the whole mix with the Orange Sriracha Vinaigrette- it's a great combination together and brings the vegetables alive.

Napa cabbage is a friendlier cabbage than most, in my opinion. It's high in antioxidants, folates, Vitamins A, K and C and it gives a great crunch to any salad. Asparagus is rich in fiber, supports our immune system, helps our fight against inflammation, has anti cancer benefits and helps to regulate blood sugar. Power packed nutrition in one fun and tasty salad.

Pack the basket, head to your nearest park and pull out this Fat and Happy picnic loving salad. It will leave the crowd comfortably satisfied.

Fat and Happy Food Blog Tips and Techniques: The nuts and dried cherries add another dimension to this salad so I highly recommend adding them in. Unlike many dressings, this one exhibited the best flavor the first day I made it.


Asparagus, Cabbage and Couscous Salad 
Orange Sriracha Vinaigrette

1 cup couscous, uncooked
1 1/4 cup broth
pinch of salt
drizzle of olive oil
1/2 head Napa cabbage, chopped in thin slices
2 cups asparagus ribbons
Dried cherries or craisins, handful
Soy nuts, handful

 Orange Sriracha Vinaigrette
2 Tbls toasted sesame seeds
1/2 heaping Tbls Sriracha
1 Tbls pure, toasted sesame oil
2 Tbls sesame oil
1/2 rice wine vinaigrette
1/2 large orange, juice and zest
pinch of salt
handful of parsley, chopped

Cook the couscous according to package directions, using the broth in place of water with a pinch of salt and a drizzle of olive oil. Set aside to cool.

Whisk together the Sriracha Vinaigrette while the couscous is cooking (sriracha, sesame seeds and  oils, rice wine vinegar, salt, parsley and orange juice and zest.)

Slice the cabbage into thin strips. Use a carrot peeler to make ribbons out of the asparagus; just peel like you would a carrot.

Toss the cabbage, asparagus and couscous with about half of the dressing, add additional dressing if needed.

Top with the craisins and soy nuts if desired.

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