Wednesday, April 24, 2013

No Pasta Salad from Paleo Powder

While preparing my review of Paleo Powder, I tried the recipe Lauren and Dustin have posted on the product website for No Pasta Salad.  I threw this together one morning before work, so I'm short on pictures.  The next time I make this, I'll fill it out a bit.

First, I gathered my ingredients.  

The recipe on the product site calls for you to use 1/2 cup Braggs Organic Healthy Vinaigrette.   If you look at the ingredients of that dressing, it has honey and Bragg Liquid Aminos.  For some you you honey may not be an issue, but I don't like added sugars in my food.  The Bragg Liquid Aminos is made from soy, so its not paleo, at least not in my house.  

So, I took the good ingredients from the dressing and made my own.  I filled a measuring cup with 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil.  In the same measuring cup I added apple cider vinegar until the total volume of the liquid was at 1/2 cup.  I minced 2 garlic cloves with my garlic press into the measuring cup.  I then added 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon of ground pepper.  I used a whisk to combine the ingredients.  Voila- a bragg like soy free vinaigrette!

You will want to get a big bowl out to mix the salad in.  My mixing bowl was 3.5 liters and it was pretty much full. 

Spaghetti squash plays the role of pasta in this no pasta salad.  I steamed some the day before so it was nice and cold for the salad.  I did not use an entire spaghetti squash in my batch of this recipe.  I used about 2.5 cups.  This seemed right to me when I mixed everything up.  The recipe didn't say whether to peel the cucumbers or not but I know that I often don't like the texture of thick cucumber skin so I peeled my 2 cucumbers before dicing.  I didn't peel the zucchini before dicing it.  I diced a red onion and added it to the bowl.  

I had some bagged and pre-washed broccoli florets I needed to use, so I guesstimated that 2 cups would work out to one crown.  I didn't have one tomato but I did have 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, so I halved those and added them to the salad.  The recipe suggests getting creative with your vegetables, so I felt alright with improvising a bit.  Finally I added the dressing and 1 tablespoon of Paleo Powder and mixed everything together with tongs.    

Here is my finished bowl of salad.  I tried a little right after I mixed it, but put the rest in the refrigerator to chill and let the flavors meld a bit.  

I was eating this at lunch time, so I thought it would be interesting to add a can of tuna to the salad for a complete meal.  

Accessibility & Cost of Ingredients:  You should be able to find all the ingredients but for the Paleo Powder at your "big box" grocery store.  Lucky for you, you can buy the Paleo Powder right here through the blog.  Just click on the picture of the Paleo Powder and you can get a bottle (or 2) for just $6.00/bottle.  Through April 30th, you can enter to win a bottle of Paleo Powder here!  
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Preparation & Cooking Time:  It takes me about 15 minutes to steam spaghetti squash (preparation instructions are at the bottom of that post) and to scoop out the "noodles."  It took me 5 minutes to mix up the dressing.   It took me 15 minutes do dice the vegetables and mix up the salad.  Your time will vary depending on what vegetables you use.  

Clean Up:  I used one of my cheap knives, so everything I used went into the dishwasher.  

The Paleo Review:  Thumbs up!  I guess there really was no doubt I liked this.  The apple cider vinegar adds a little sweetness and the Paleo Powder a kick you wouldn't normally get with just black pepper.  I was skeptical that I'd like this actually because I usually don't like raw broccoli, but the broccoli was my favorite part actually.  The salad tasted great right after mixing it up but I think the flavor improves with a little time in the refrigerator.  Next time, I might actually up the Paleo Powder to 1.5 tablespoons as I think I'd like a little more kick.  The site suggests trying artichoke hearts which I will certainly add in the future as I think they will be really tasty.  And how did the tuna taste in the salad?  AWESOME!  

Who needs pasta?  I surely don't.  Grab a bottle of Paleo Powder and give this recipe a try.