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A Yummy Citrus Asian Salad Dressing

March 15, 2014

Asian Citrus & 5 spice salad dressing

Asian Citrus & 5 spice salad dressing

It’s nice to have an easy standby salad dressing on hand that has a bit of WOW factor to turn an ordinary salad into something more exotic. This is a good one. Normally I would mix up a Thai inspired combination of fish sauce, lime & sugar to give a salad an Asian bent but I was getting a bit bored of that. This recipe still has all of the salty, sweet & sour components but has also the aromatics of sesame & Chinese 5 spice.

Chinese 5 spice is used to season meats or vegetables (mainly meats) and is the trademark blend used for Siew Yoke – the crispy pork belly that you see hanging in the Chinese roast shops. The basic components are Sichuan pepper, fennel, cinnamon, cloves, and star anise but there are variations that include nutmeg,  pepper, and ground ginger too.

It is a pungent and warming blend that can overpower – I love it but I have to use it carefully as my husband doesn’t share the same passion for it! It will add depth and fullness to a simple stir fry and works well in this dressing.

Make your own by mixing up:

15 whole star anise
1 tab Sichuan pepper
2 tab fennel seeds
12 – 15 whole cloves
2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
Roast the spices in your TM for 6 minutes on VAROMA temp, SP 1.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes and then mill on SP 10 for a minute or two until fine. Store in an airtight container.
My experience with grinding cloves is that they are very oily and you need quite a handful to mill them efficiently. Sometimes I use 1 teas ground cloves in this recipe if I have them on hand.
Use the Chinese 5 spice in the salad dressing below:

50g dates, fresh or dried
1 red chilli
1 clove garlic
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 teas salt (or more to taste)
1 tab apple cider vinegar
1 tab sesame oil
1 tab macadamia oil
1 tab tamari or soy
1/2 teas chinese 5 spice (or more to taste)
1 orange, peeled and seeds removed

Add all of the ingredients to the TM and blend on SP 8 for 1 minute.

To make the salad I have shredded:

1 carrot
1/8 cabbage
1/2 red capsicum
1 large zucchini
2 handfuls of bean sprouts
1 handful of vermicelli noodles*, blanched
1 handful each of chopped coriander & mint
I tossed all of this together with half of the dressing and then poured the remainder over some grilled meat**  which I arranged on the top. It was a hit with my visitors for lunch last weekend.

My recipe for (a non-Asian) Crispy pork belly is here but for a good Siew Yoke recipe look here.

*I used kelp noodles  in this picture but they are really hard to find, vermicelli work perfectly.

**  Any meat, beef, chicken or pork, will work well. I used rare roasted kangaroo in this photo. This is a great salad for extending left over cold meat!

7 Comments leave one →
  1. March 18, 2014 3:13 pm

    I don’t have a Thermomix. Is it possible for you to post conversions for your recipe? Can’t wait to try this wonderful looking dish. Thanks, heather 🙂

    • March 18, 2014 3:44 pm

      Hi heather, this simple salad dressing can be whipped up in any blender or food processor. Just go on the highest speed until smooth!!

  2. March 18, 2014 12:44 pm

    Reblogged this on Eat Live Travel and commented:
    Would be great with some of the contents of our veggie box this week x

  3. March 15, 2014 6:06 pm

    That looks really yummy! I’ve never tried mixing up my own 5 spice, though I’ve thought of doing it many times. Now I just might =) Thanks for the siew yoke mention!

  4. March 15, 2014 10:40 am

    Hi Sarah. This looks scrummy!! Do you by any chance have the cooking conversions for conventional cooking as I don’t have a Thermomix? Thanks heaps. heather x

    • March 18, 2014 3:47 pm

      I wouldn’t make your own 5 spice in a food processor but it would work well in a coffee grinder. Otherwise, just buy the pre bought mix. I bought my kelp noodles from the west end markets

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