Bean and Cauliflower Salad with Sunflower Seeds and Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette

Third post of the month-so glad to be getting back to making more recipes. Today's recipe is another one that's great with grilled food, and is perhaps appropriate for father's day because it's more of a manly salad because there's no wimpy lettuce just lemon juice and oil. This salad is a bit heartier because there's no lettuce; instead there's cauliflower and beans which are full of fiber and have a little protein too. Dressing this salad is a rich sun dried tomato dressing. As I was making this dressing I was afraid it would be too thick to dress a salad, but as I tossed the vegetables with the dressing it coated them nicely, but wasn't gloppy. This dressing would actually be great for a crudites dip, especially if you have vegan friends because there's no dairy in this dressing.

The color of the salad was complimentary to the little steak I grilled up alongside. It's a sirloin tip steak (aka: tri-tip steak), thinly cut. To me, it's in the same league as a skirt steak or top round steak---lean and relatively inexpensive (well, skirt steak used to be inexpensive before people kept mentioning how affordable it it costs more). I happen to like sirloin tip steak the most, however, because it always seems really tender. Skirt steak seems to have more connective tissue and round steak tends to roll at the edges as you cook it. In terms of where the tri-tip steak comes from on the animal, its part of the bottom sirloin so it's posterior to the flank steak and anterior to the round steak. Anyway, this is not supposed to be a lesson on steak, it's supposed to be a write-up about this awesome salad, but if you are looking for a good, affordable option for dad or just for grilling in general, I suggest the sirloin tip/tri-tip steak.

If you didn't get the impression before, this was an awesome meal. I'm glad I took the time to prepare something special for my lunch because I haven't done that in a really long time. It was just what I needed after completing my P90X KenpoX workout!

Bean and Cauliflower Salad with Sunflower Seeds and Sun Dried Tomato Vinaigrette
Printable Recipe

1 cup frozen cut green beans, thawed
1 10-oz package frozen cauliflower florets, thawed
1 15-oz can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 dry-packed sun dried tomatoes
1 clove garlic, peeled and coarsely chopped
4 tbsp white balsamic vinaigrette
2 tbsp light olive oil
2 tbsp raw, unsalted sunflower seeds
salt and pepper, to taste
stevia, or another sweetener to taste

1. Add the beans and cauliflower to a bowl.
2. In a mini food processor, blend the tomatoes, garlic, vinegar, and oil to make a thick dressing. Season with salt, pepper, and stevia, to taste.
3. Toss the beans and cauliflower with the dressing. Garnish with the seeds.

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