With a bright orange colour, Mixed Vegetable Salad Dressing is full of grated vegetables–it is 50% vegetables! It’s almost like a liquid salad! It looks great on green salad.
I did not plan to make today’s recipe, but I had so many vegetables that I had to come up with dishes that can use up a lot of them. I had been eating vegetable dishes and salads since the beginning of last week when I developed this recipe.
I’ll tell you the reason why I was bombarded with tons of vegetables.
Nagi left for the US on Monday 7thof May to give a presentation at the Everything Food Conference in Salt Lake City. My son and his partner left for London the following day to travel Italy for a month.
Before leaving Sydney, both of them emptied their fridges and brought vegetables and fruits to my place. They must have thought they were so kind to give me free food. But I DID NOT want them!
Nagi’s veggie inventory included two big cauliflower heads – what was I going to do with them? To make the situation worse, she even bought a big bunch of celery and a big fat carrot the day before she was due to fly out, thinking she needed to be healthy and would make veggie sticks to munch on the plane. Nah! She did not even touch them. So they stayed with me.
My son brought a large lotus root and said ‘Mum, you like lotus roots, don’t you?’ Yes, I do but I already have a large lotus root in my fridge. He also gave me a pack of kimchi (Korean fermented salted vegetables), but I already had some.
When they left Sydney, I had 1 plastic boxful of rocket leaves, 1 plastic boxful of mizuna leaves, 1 plastic boxful of mixed salad leaves, two large heads of cauliflower, two large lotus roots, 10 tomatoes, 5 limes, 1 big bunch of celery, 2 onions, 2 x 1kg bags of carrots, 2 red capsicums, ½ green capsicum, plus my other veggies.
I had to consume the salad leaves ASAP as they don’t survive for long. The cauliflowers looked a bit old too with black spots appearing on the surface. I sighed with the fridge door open and that was when I thought I might invent this Mixed Vegetable Salad Dressing.
I usually do not use salad dressing. I can eat fresh salad leaves without anything on them. I know that my habit makes my kids think I am strange. But to consume as many veggies as possible with the least pain, I ate the salad with this dressing and it was pretty good.
See my healthy dinner below with all the excess veggies from kids. Oops! I also had a couple of large glasses of Pinot Noir with it…. Maybe not so healthy….
I checked the ingredients of ‘野菜ドレッシング’ (yasai doresshingu), meaning vegetable dressing, sold at Japanese grocery stores. Different types of dressing contain different vegetables in them but they tend to include onions, carrots and apples. I didn’t have apples so I added daikon (white radish) instead for a similar texture. I also added tomato because I had too many in my fridge.
So, my Mixed Vegetable Salad Dressing consists of grated daikon, grated carrot, grated onion and grated tomato. Tomato made the colour of the dressing deeper orange which you cannot obtain from just carrot.
In addition to the usual vinegar and oil, this dressing contains soy sauce to give a Japanese touch just like store-bought vegetable dressing. I also added a small amount of sesame oil.
Vegetables – Grating vs Pureeing
In the recipe, I indicated that the vegetables are to be finely grated. I was initially going to puree the ingredients in the blender because it’s much easier. All you need to do is to dump everything in the blender and press the button until smooth.
I don’t have a blender but I have a stick blender. Well, that’s what I thought. There was the attachment with the blades, but I couldn’t find the handle with the power cord attached to it. I searched everywhere but could not find it. Then I remembered that my son borrowed it and never returned it to me. That’s another thing the children often do to their mother.
Without a blender, I had to grate the vegetables by hand and mix the dressing in a jar by shaking it with the lid tightly closed. I was annoyed with the missing blender but on the other hand, I was pleased that I grated the vegetables instead of pureeing them. The dressing gives you a granular texture and when poured on the salad, the veggie bits stay on the surface, giving a beautiful orange colour to the simple green salad.
You can of course use a blender to puree the ingredients. That would be super quick. You can also control how smooth you want the dressing to be. The degree of granularity of the dressing is really your preference. When I get the blender back, I shall make a pureed dressing.
Unlike simple dressings with just oil and vinegar, Mixed Vegetable Salad Dressing keeps only a few days in the fridge due to the grated vegetables. The recipe makes about 250ml of dressing which looks a lot but half of its volume is vegetables. It probably serves 4-6 people worth of salad bowls.
This was an unplanned recipe and my kids haven’t tried it. But I liked it and I hope you like it, too.
P.S. I am sorry about being grumpy over the excess vegetables. The recipe is so simple that I had too much space to fill with the recent story of my life.
With a bright orange colour, Mixed Vegetable Salad Dressing is full of grated vegetables – it is 50% vegetables! It’s almost like a liquid salad! It looks great on green salad.
It makes about 250ml of dressing. If you use a blender, time required to make this dressing is even faster.
- 30g (1.1oz) daikon (white radish) , finely grated (note 1)
- 30g (1.1oz) carrot , finely grated
- 30g (1.1oz) onion , finely grated
- 30g (1.1oz) tomato , finely grated
- 45ml (1.5oz) salad oil
- 5ml (0.2oz) sesame oil
- 50ml (1.7oz) rice wine vinegar (note 2)
- 20ml (0.7oz) light soy sauce (note 3)
- 2 tsp sugar (note 1)
- Two pinches of black pepper
Place all the ingredients in a jar.
Cover the opening of the jar with cling wrap, put the lid on and shake well.
1. Instead of daikon, you can use grated apple and reduce sugar to one teaspoon.
2. You can substitute with apple cider vinegar.
3. Light soy sauce can be substituted with normal soy sauce. The dressing will be a touch darker. Dark soy sauce is not suitable.
4. Instead of grating vegetables, you can use a blender to puree them. Add everything to the blender and puree until the dressing becomes the desired consistency.
5. This dressing is great for plain green salad or other vegetables with plain flavours. It keeps a few days in the fridge. You can also freeze it. Thaw naturally without heating up in microwave.