We’ve all been there – an occasion that calls for us to “bring a dish”. It could be Christmas or Thanksgiving, or get-togethers for Memorial Day, 4th of July, or Labor Day. No matter the occasion, most of us vegans will be bringing a dish anyway just to make sure we have something to eat! This past Easter, I had two family visits in one day – first to my in-laws and then to my parents’ house – so I went to my default potluck dishes. I know these dishes travel well, and many of them you can make the day before so the actual day is not so stressful. Here are some of my favorites:
Raw Kale Salad
I like this one for a few reasons. First, I can make it the night before and it still tastes great, if not better, then next day. Second, I can make this dish entirely with vegetables from our garden. That makes it feel a little extra special, and it’s a nice story to tell the other guests. Third, it’s really easy to make. The key is to make the dressing in the salad bowl, then just add the ingredients to it one-by-one as you’re prepping them, and then mix!
- ¼ cup of chickpea miso
- 2 tbsps of sesame oil
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 2 tbsps of water
- 1 tbsp of tamari
- 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar
Whisk all of the ingredients in the bottom of the salad bowl until well combined and free of lumps.
- A bunch of kale (your choice how much)
- 1 large beet, or enough small beets from the garden. Play it by ear.
- 2 medium carrots, or a bunch of small carrots from the garden.
- ½ cup of walnuts
Wash the kale and tear it into bite sized pieces with your hands, leaving out the stalks. Place the pieces of kale directly into the salad bowl with the dressing. Halfway through, mix so that the kale is covered with dressing. The dressing softens the kale and makes it more edible. Mix again once all of the kale is in the bowl.
Grate the carrots and add to the bowl. Peel the beet, grate, and add to bowl. Break the walnuts up into smaller chunks with your hands and add to bowl. Mix all of the ingredients so that everything gets a bit of dressing. And you’re done!
Sesame Pasta Salad
This one tastes best after a night in the fridge, and the pasta makes it a bit more substantial than eating just a bunch of greens (the standard fare for the vegan at the party).
Boil water and prepare a box of pasta of your choice. Prepare dressing while pasta is cooking.
- 4 tbsps of red wine vinegar
- 3 tbsps of coconut sugar
- Juice of 1 large lemon
- 2 tbsps of Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsps of soy sauce
- 1 tsp of fresh grated ginger
- ½ cup of avocado oil
Add all of the ingredients for the dressing to a bowl and whisk together until well combined.
Prep the veg:
- 1 cup of water chestnuts
- 1 cup of frozen peas, heated up
- 6-8 green onions, chopped diagonally
Once the pasta is ready, drain in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop it from cooking further. Do the same with the frozen peas. Combine the pasta and vegetables in a large bowl. Add ¼ cup of sesame seeds, salt & pepper, and the dressing. Toss until well combined. Leave in the fridge overnight to infuse the flavors.
Vegan Potato Salad
This is a Fiona original. My potato salad was a favorite dish of my family’s before I went vegan so I had to figure out a way to make it without the mayonnaise. Some of my family like this version better than the original 🙂
- Red fingerling potatoes, 1.5 – 2lbs worth
- 2 shallots, finely chopped or sliced
- A handful of Kalamata olives, sliced
- A handful of pumpkin seeds, kept whole
- Fresh dill, probably 2 tbsps worth, chopped
- 3-4 tbsps of Veganaise
- 3 tbsps of olive oil
- 3 tbsps of white wine vinegar
- Salt and pepper
Boil the red fingerling potatoes, whole, for 20 minutes or until soft. While the potatoes are cooking, you can prep the shallots, olives, pumpkin seeds, and dill and place in a medium bowl.
Once the potatoes are ready, drain in a colander and rinse with cold water. You can wait awhile until they cool off, or be brave and start chopping them when they are hot! I like to cut the potatoes into 1 inch cubes. Add to the medium bowl with the prepared veg.
Once all of the potatoes are chopped and in the same bowl as the other ingredients, add the Veganaise, salt and pepper. Mix the oil and vinegar in a small bowl or cup, and add to the rest of the ingredients. Fold all of the ingredients together until well mixed without mashing the potatoes too much. Taste and add more salt, pepper, vinegar, oil, or Veganaise to your taste. This dish is best prepared an hour or two before the get together. I’ve made it the night before, but the dish is not as good the next day when it’s completely cold.