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Asian Wild Greens Salad

This main course vegan salad is simply luscious and nicely balanced. Fried tofu and nuts team up with a delightful blend of delicate bitter greens thart ensure the salad is not too rich...but just right. I love to serve this Asian recipe with some vegan nori maki to create a light and satisfying meal. 


1/2 cup slivered almonds 
1-2 cups light olive oil -- for frying 
4 ounces tofu, extra firm -- cut into small cubes 
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil 
1 tablespoon fresh ginger root -- finely minced 
1/2 teaspoon chili powder 
1 tablespoon soy sauce 
1 tablespoon mirin or white wine
1 each roasted red pepper -- thin strips 
3 each dried shiitake mushrooms -- rehydrated, and slice, 
1/4 cup fresh basil -- shredded 
3 tablespoons fresh mint -- shredded 
1 bunch dandelion greens -- or other bitter green 
1 cup mung bean sprouts 
2 each limes -- slice one in wedges, juice other 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Arrange the almonds on a baking sheet and bake about five minutes, or until lightly browned. Set aside to cool. 

In a medium saucepan, heat about 1 inch of olive oil over medium heat. Make sure the oil is hot enough by some merging the handle of a wooden spoon into the oil. Increase the heat to high, add the tofu, and fry until golden, turning cubes to brown evenly. Drain on paper towels and set aside. 

Heat the extra virgin olive oil in a wok over medium heat. Add the ginger, chili powder, and saute for about one minute. Sprinkle lightly with soy sauce, mirin, add the bell pepper and stir well. Add the shiitake mushrooms, basil, minced mint, sprinkle lightly with soy sauce and stir-fry for about one minute. Stir in the greens and bean sprouts, season lightly with soy sauce, and stir-fry until the greens are just limp, 3-4 minutes. 

Before serving, squeezed lime juice over the greens mixture, and add that fried tofu and almonds, and toss to combine. Serve with lime wedges on the side. 


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