This Caesar salad is vegan, gluten free, tangy, delicious and sooooo craveable...basically it is a game changer!!
Speaking of game changers - have you seen the film The Game Changers? It is a film about athletes who are vegans, it is the #1 documentary on Netflix right now. It highlights the benefits of going vegan, and it is very persuasive - so it is motivating a lot of people to want to go vegan. But I find that most people give up before trying because the idea of giving up all animal products is too overwhelming, so they do....nothing. My take? Don't worry about going vegan. Just get more plant-based foods in your daily diet...starting with this salad! Try to fill half your plate at every meal with veggies. Now that is a game-changer for your health. If everyone did that, so many diseases would literally go away.
So...back to this salad. If you don't have time to make the chickpea croutons, you can skip them, but if you have the time, make them - because they are sooooo good! They also make a good snack - make a double batch & save the extras in an airtight glass jar. If you like more romaine, use more romaine.
Serves about 3-4 people for a main course, 5-6 for side salads
1/2 cup cashews (roughly chopped)
1/4 cup hemp hearts (use extra for sprinkling)
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup of water
2 teaspoons of capers (drained)
1 clove of fresh garlic
1 teaspoon of dijon mustard
1 tsp. of raw apple cider vinegar (or you can use 1 tsp. of the brine from the capers)
1/2 teaspoons of unprocessed salt (such as Real Salt brand)
fresh cracked pepper to taste
4 Tablespoons of Olive oil (or avocado oil)
Put the cashews in a glass container, and cover with filtered water, allow to soak for approximately 30 minutes. Then drain.
Make the chickpea croutons:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees..
Drain & rinse the can of chickpeas, and put them on a paper towel lined plate. Remove & discard the outer skin of the chickpea (it is worth this extra step), and put them into a bowl. Toss them in the avocado oil, salt, pepper, cumin, and garlic powder. Put on a baking sheet, and put into the preheated oven - stir after 15 minutes. Check in another 10 minutes. These take 25-30 minutes total.
Make the dressing:
Drain the cashews and then put them and all of the following in the blender: hemp hearts, lemon juice, water, capers, dijon, vinegar (or brine), and salt & fresh cracked pepper. Blend to combine. Add in the oil one Tablespoon at a time blending each time to emulsify. Pour the dressing into a glass jar and store extra in refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Rinse & dry your romaine and kale leaves (a salad spinner works great for this).
Remove the stems from the Lakinto kale, and chiffonade the leaves (cut into strips).
Slice the romaine lettuce in thin strips too.
Put romaine and kale into bowl, toss in dressing (don't be stingy!), and then top with a teaspoon of hemp hearts, a small handful of the chickpea croutons, and about 1/4 teaspoon of drained capers if desired. Optionally - add more fresh cracked pepper. Serve!