There are few things I love more than a new food discovery. Whether it be a new restaurant, a new product (I almost died and went to heaven when I discovered Purely Decadent ice cream in Whole Foods one hot summer day), or a new ingredient, it’s always exciting bringing some variety into your food world. So imagine my excitement when I found coconut amino at my local health food store when I went to re-up on my bottle of wheat-free tamari. There, in the section where it seemed only fermented soy products were destined to reside, was this soy-free, dairy-free, vegan product. I turned around the label. I must have been missing something. Would there be some disclaimer on the back — some small print concession that this product contains a trace amount of soy? Nope. Just more to make me want to buy the stuff. It was high in healthy amino acids. Lower in sodium than soy sauce or liquid amino and very low on the glycemic index. Plus, it was relatively inexpensive. Here is my inaugural recipe using coconut aminos: a simple, satisfying kale salad with quinoa for protein (an homage to the cafe at the Detroit Zen Center, a Delectably Free fave), and dried cranberries for a tart, sweet addition.
1 bunch kale, washed, chopped and tough ribs removed
1 cup cooked quinoa, kept warm
1/2 cup fruit sweetened dried cranberries
3 tablespoons coconut aminos
3 tablespoons sesame tahini
3 tablespoons fresh-squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons water
1. Prepare dressing in a blender or, alternately, combine ingredients in a jar and shake vigorously.
2. Toss salad ingredients with dressing in a large bowl until kale is covered. Some dressing may be left over.