blissful eats with tina jeffers: Spring salad with carrot sesame dressing

I realize that a lot of you don't garden but I just have to say that if you've never tried it you are missing out on an amazing opportunity.  There is no gratification greater for me than eating a dish centered around vegetables that I grew with my own two hands.  When we moved into our house 7 years ago I had never attempted to grow anything except for a few sad houseplants.  It took some work and a little trial and error but growing your own vegetables doesn't need to be difficult or intimidating.  Pick a few things that you love and try them out in a few pots.  Fresh herbs and lettuces are a great place to start, they are super forgiving and easy to care for.  

This is the time of year when the garden starts delivering on all the work that has been put into it.  Tender baby lettuces, crispy snap peas, bright vibrant radishes, I love them all.  Faced with a basket of all this beauty I knew that I wanted a dish that would highlight the freshness without losing all those delicate flavors.  I paired these delicious spring vegetables with an Asian inspired carrot sesame dressing that I can never get enough of.  If you try this recipe don't skimp on the dressing, the more the merrier.  The dressing is delicious as a dip or you could even toss it with some soba noodles for the most delicious pasta dish ever.  For a variation try some edamame and shredded cabbage instead of the lettuce and snap peas or try any of your favorite vegetable combinations.  For more recipes visit me during the rest of the week at

Spring salad with carrot sesame dressing

Serves 4


1 medium carrot

one 2-inch piece peeled and chopped ginger

1 clove garlic

4 tablespoons white miso

2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 teaspoons sesame oil

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup vegetable oil

salt and pepper to taste

1 head of bibb lettuce

1 cup snap peas

1 avocado

1 bunch radishes

1 cup pea shoots

3 teaspoons sesame seeds


Process carrots, ginger, garlic, miso, vinegar, sesame seeds, sesame oil and water in a food processor or blender until smooth.

With the machine running, slowly add vegetable oil.  Season with salt and pepper.

To assemble the salad.  Break up the lettuce and divide among four plates.  Thinly slice the radishes, cut the snap peas in half lengthwise and add them along with the pea shoots to the salad.  Dice the avocado and scatter over the top.  Sprinkle  the sesame seeds and drizzle dressing over the top of the salad.  Serve any extra dressing on the side.