Vegan Carrot Ginger Dressing

Japanese Carrot & Ginger Dressing (Vegan / Oil Free)

Japanese Carrot & Ginger Dressing :: It has been quite some time since I have been to a Japanese Steakhouse. You know the hibachi style grill with seating around it and a chef doing fun tricks while cooking?

I’m trying to think if they would even have any vegan options if I did choose to go…

Anyways, one of my sisters and I are obsessed with the orange dressing they put on their salad and the yum yum sauce that goes on your rice entrée. I’ll link a yum yum sauce recipe once I figure that one out vegan-style but for now, I’m so excited to share with you my vegan version of their Japanese Carrot & Ginger Dressing (aka, Japanese Orange Salad Dressing).

Please be aware, this is my version. It has been at least 8 years since I have been to one of these restaurants so it may not taste exactly like theirs. But I promise it is spunky and good!

What you will need

  • High Speed Blender (preferred)
  • Carrots
  • Onion
  • Ginger Root
  • Maple Syrup
  • Soy Sauce
  • Rice Vinegar
  • Raw Cashews
  • Sea Salt
  • Water

And it’s so simple to create!

1. Soak your cashews. Start this first since you need at least 30 minutes for them to be soft enough for a high speed blender to create a smooth dressing.

2. Into your blender, add the chopped carrots, onions, ginger, maple syrup, soy sauce, rice vinegar and sea salt. (do not add water yet)

3. Once your cashews are soaked, drain and rinse then add to the blender.

4. Start your blender on low to start to break down all of your ingredients. Stop to scrape the sides if necessary. It is also helpful to use a tamper if you have a Vitamix or blender that has one.

5. Once most of the ingredients are broken down in to much smaller pieces, slowly turn up to high. Add in your water 2 tablespoons at a time until you reach a smooth consistency.

Tip: I notice when I soak cashews for just 30 minutes for recipes, I generally need to use more liquid than when I soak for 3 hours to overnight which is why I generally recommend starting with a smaller amount of liquid and adding as needed.

This Japanese Carrot & Ginger Dressing can be used immediately but will thicken a bit and the flavors will merry better if refrigerated for at least an hour.

How is a traditional Japanese Steakhouse Salad served?

From my recollection and in doing research, there is no specific way. Most are your basic salad ingredients. Lettuce (generally looks like iceberg), a few julienned carrots and maybe a couple cucumbers and sliced tomato.

How have I served it?

I have served this delicious dressing two ways.

One was similar to the basic salad I just mentioned. The difference is, I chop a big bowl of romaine and add baked or pan fried tofu.

The other is the fun one! I make a Deconstructed Vegan Sushi Bowl.

Again, I use a big bowl of chopped romaine and baked or pan fried tofu. I add diced cucumber, julienned carrots, avocado, a little sushi rice and seaweed snacks on the side. You can use nori strips but I’m not a fan of the fishy/sea flavors of nori so I use the seaweed snack. You can also cut the seaweed in to strips yourself and lay it on top of your bowl to garnish. The reason why I choose to eat them on the side is because when they get warm or wet, they then have that fishy/sea flavor I do not like.

My favorite least fishy/sea flavor seaweed snack brand is gimMe snacks. The sesame and teriyaki flavors are my favorite but I also purchase the plain kind with sea salt. The sesame or sea salt flavors would work best with this Deconstructed Vegan Sushi Bowl.

Let us get on to the recipe!

Japanese Carrot & Ginger Dressing (Vegan)

Recipe by Jen HortonCuisine: JapaneseDifficulty: Easy
Servings

7

1/4 cup servings
Prep time

35

minutes
Calories

64

kcal

Jen’s vegan and oil-free version of a Japanese Steakhouse’s orange salad dressing. Punchy ginger & sour flavors with a little sweet to balance it out.

Ingredients

  • carrots, 1 cup peeled & chopped small

  • white or yellow onion, 1/2 cup chopped

  • fresh ginger root, 2 tbsp peeled & small dice

  • maple syrup, 2 tbsp

  • soy sauce, 4 tbsp

  • rice vinegar, 1/2 cup

  • raw cashews, 1/4 cup

  • sea salt, 1/2 tsp

  • water, 1/4 cup

Directions

  • Soak your cashews in water for at least 30 minutes–up to overnight. Drain & rinse.
  • Add all of your ingredients (except water) into a high speed blender (preferred). Start to blend on a low setting; stopping to scrape down the sides if needed.
  • Once most of the ingredients are broken down in to much smaller pieces, slowly turn up to high. Add in your water 2 tablespoons at a time until you reach a smooth consistency.
  • This dressing can be used immediately but will thicken a bit and the flavors will merry better if refrigerated for at least an hour.

Notes

  • I notice when I soak cashews for just 30 minutes for recipes, I generally need to use more liquid than when I soak for 3 hours to overnight which is why I generally recommend starting with a smaller amount of liquid and adding as needed.
  • The rice vinegar is what makes this dressing quite punchy. When you initially taste it, you may think, “wow! flavor punch.” I promise the greens in a salad will balance that out. Also refrigerating the dressing for a bit will allow the other flavors to marry and create balance as well.

Are you looking for more vegan & oil free dressings or sauces?

Try out my Creamy Dijon Dressing or Tangy Lime Sour Cream!

-Jen

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