I may be dating myself, but I remember when bottled Green Goddess dressing hit supermarket shelves. Oooh la, la! Of course, back in the day, creamy dressings were made with mayonnaise and were calorically prohibitive. Then they tried reducing the fat. But the problem with low-fat dressings is that the flavor gets lost in translation. To make up for less fat and flavor, they add sugar and sodium; it’s a catch-22. But I found a way around it by using a buttery avocado in place of oil and came up with a spicy, garlicky south of the border version. While there is fat in avocados [some call it “green fat”], they contain good fat and provide an excellent source of vitamins and minerals: C, E, K, B-6, potassium, omega-3, and beta-carotene. This post follows up on my Bikini Goddess series and reminds me of another saucy vixen—silver-screen goddess, Rita Hayworth. With her glowing skin and dancer’s body. she could make a gunny sack sparkle with sassy style because she radiated from the inside out. And this nutrient-dense grain bowl with its vibrant vegetables, bursting with vitamin-A [the skin vitamin], and silky smooth dressing, will have you glowing and looking sleek and sexy poolside or at the beach in time for summer. Viva la goddess. Green is the new black!
Bikini Green-Goddess Dressing
- 1-lb tomatillos, hulled and washed
- 1-serrano or jalapeno chili
- 1-cup water
- 1-bunch cilantro with stems removed
- 1-lime juiced
- 1-tsp cumin
- 1-tsp garlic powder
- 1-tsp onion powder
- 1/2-tsp pink-Himalayan or sea salt
- 1-cup parmesan cheese or vegan parmesan
- 2-tbsp minced garlic
- 2-tbsp Lea & Perrin or 1/4-cup of vegan Worcestershire sauce
- 1-tsp chipotle Tabasco sauce
- Place tomatillos, chili, and water in a 3-qt pan. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 30-minutes or until tomatillos have blistered and split.
- Cool completely before blending other ingredients.
- Transfer tomatillos and liquid to blender or food processor.
- Add remaining ingredients, and blend until creamy smooth.
Grain Bowl Ingredients:
- 4-cups water or vegetable stock
- 1-cup long-grain brown rice
- 1-cup quinoa
- 2-medium size heads romaine lettuce, chopped
- 2-cups tricolor cabbage
- 1-cucumber, seeded and diced
- 1-red bell pepper, diced
- 2-stalks celery, diced
- 1-cup shredded carrots
- 1-zucchini or crookneck squash, diced
- 1 1/2-cups broccoli
- 6-radishes, sliced
- 6-scallions, thinly sliced
- 6-oz package of pear-shape or cherry tomatoes halved
- 2-cups low-sodium black beans
- 1-cup fresh/frozen corn
- 1-lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- Kitchen Essence seasoning
Yields 4-servings. For added texture, garnish with chili-lime tortilla strips. Nutrient value-based per serving includes 3oz of dressing. The dressing can be prepared ahead.
- Rinse and drain grains.
- In a 3-qt saucepan, bring water/stock to a boil. Add grains, stir and reduce heat to low.
- Simmer until water has fully evaporated. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Prepare salad in a large bowl.
- Season chicken and grill or saute and set aside.
- Toss salad with grains and dressing and arrange grilled/sauteed chicken on top.