“Creamy Curry Pasta & Vegetable Salad”, page 93, is a very pleasing combination of pasta, steamed and raw vegetables, and a very flavorful curry dressing. I am very fond of using bow tie pasta for salads, and since I had some on hand, that’s what I ended up using. Many recipes, including this one, give instructions for adding a vegetable to the pasta pot during the last few minutes of cooking, I suppose to combine steps, and eliminate the need to cook both things separately. Problem is, for me at least, I’m not that good at accurately judging when the pasta is going to be done, and I end up adding the vegetables (in this case, cauliflower) either too early, or too late. For that reason, I just take the extra step, and time, to cook the pasta separately, set it aside, and cook the vegetables on their own. The raw veggies in this salad include red bell pepper, red onion, tomatoes, cucumber, and cilantro.
I changed the dressing up quite a bit. As written, it was calling for 1/3 cup of grapeseed oil (along with lemon juice, curry powder, sugar, salt, and cayenne). While I could have substituted an oil free Italian dressing for this, or even just used water and thickened the dressing with guar gum, I opted to take a detour and make a different kind of creamy dressing. I ended up using 1/3 cup each of plain unflavored yogurt, and homemade oil free mayo (see review here), leaving all the seasonings the same. Finally, the salad is topped with roasted cashews, adding a wonderful texture and flavor-layer. I was more than pleased with the outcome, in fact, I had to stop myself from polishing off the entire salad in one sitting!
This makes a very satisfying main dish salad, or in smaller portions, a tasty side dish. I’m certain it would be very nicely received at a picnic or potluck as well.
Keeping it “McDougall Friendly” check list:
- Omit the 1/3 cup of oil. Instead, substitute an equal amount of bottled oil free Italian dressing, or 1/3 cup water and thicken with ¼ teaspoon of guar gum.
- Instead of oil, salad dressing, or water, try the substitution of mayo and yogurt as described above.