Removing so many things from my diet at one time was a challenge. It still can be some days. I cooked very simply for the first month. Salt and olive oil were my best friends in the kitchen that month with the help of a few other spices and herbs. Once I got used to what I could have and couldn’t have, my creativity took over.
I decided to make my Hamburger Salad with some tweaks to make it yeast-free and egg-free. Instead of mixing egg and the seasoning into the ground beef, I formed plain patties and seasoned the outside with salt and ground cumin. I omitted the mushrooms and sprouts, just using caramelized onions on top. I added diced jicama and a shredded carrot to the romaine heart and tossed. I garnished with the diced tomato and a diced avocado.
The dressing really made the salad for me. I played on my used of cumin for the hamburger and toasted cumin seeds for the dressing. Instead of using a vinegar as my acid, I used fresh lemon juice. I use mostly lemon juice because between the adrenal fatigue and everything else going on in the last few months, lemon seems to be what I can tolerate in small doses. I do use the occasional lime. I used an orange last week for the first time in months.
Dressings are based on a foundation of ratios between acids and oils. Once you have the basics down you can add anything to it to make it interesting and fun. This is one of those times where you absolutely should be playing with your food.
Toasted Cumin Dressing
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
juice of half a lemon (approximately 2 tablespoons)
Heat a small dry pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and dry toast until fragrant. Remove from heat and let cool. Once cool, add to a spice/coffee grinder and grind the seeds coarsely. Juice the lemon into a glass measuring cup and remove the seeds. Add olive oil to the 1/2 cup line. Add toasted cumin and salt (to taste) and whisk until it emulsifies.
This post is linked to Whole Food Fridays at Allergy-Free Alaska.