Cook's Hideout: Salad with Homemade Croutons & Avocado Dressing

March 05, 2011

Salad with Homemade Croutons & Avocado Dressing

Salads make for an excellent 30minute meal. Salad greens already washed and packed in a bag make meals even more convenient. Open the bag, add some toppings (tomatoes, onions, olives etc.) and toss with dressing - dinner can be served in no time. But if you want to make it a little fancier with homemade croutons and dressing, then it might take up to 30 minutes, which is perfect for a weeknight meal. This is my 2nd day post for 7-day Blogging Marathon.

I made this Savory Christmas bread from KAF blog. But the bread seemed a little dry (may be because I used reduced fat milk and cheese-not sure) , we enjoyed some of it fresh the day I made it, but for the next day I decided to turn the leftover bread into croutons to toss with salad.

Recipe adapted from KAF catalog.
Partially stale Bread - 4 cups, crusts cut off and cubed
Olive Oil - 1tbsp
Salt - to taste
Herbe de Provence - ¼tsp

Homemade Croutons
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Combine oil, salt and herbe de provence, and toss with the bread.
  • Spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet (lined with foil-for easy clean up).
  • Bake for 20 to 24 minutes, turning every 8 minutes until browned and crisp.
While the croutons are baking, make the dressing. I love avocados for their creamy textures and neutral flavor. I think they pick up any flavor you want them to pick up. I love to make chocolate pudding with avocado, unsweetened cocoa powder and some agave nectar-I think it tastes divine. There's not much of a recipe for this dressing, since it's nothing but smooth guacamole thinned out with water to dressing consistency. Here's how I made it.

Avocado - 1 ripe, pitted and flesh scooped
Jalapeno pepper - 1
Garlic - 2 cloves
Scallions - 3, chopped
Lemon juice - 2-3 tbsp
Mint leaves - 3tbsp, chopped
Coriander leaves - 3tbsp, chopped
Salt & Pepper - to taste

Ingredients for Avocado Dressing
  • Blend all the ingredients until smooth without adding any water. Just before tossing with the salad, add just enough water to thin out the dressing.
  • Without adding water, the dip will stay fresh in the fridge for up to 3-4 days.
Avocado DressingPutting the Salad together:
By this time, you should have your salad greens out of the bag and in a large bowl mixed with some chopped tomatoes, green onions, cucumbers or any other veggies that you favor. Add some protein with some cooked chickpeas or any other beans, chopped boiled egg, chopped cooked veggie burger (we love Morning Star vegetable burger in salads). I added some cooked store-bought veggie meatballs.

Salad with homamade CroutonsThen add the dressing, mix well and finally add the croutons and some cheese (feta or queso fresco are my personal favorites, but cubed pepper jack or mozarella are yummy too). Now it's time to enjoy your salad creation!!!!!

Don't forget to check out what my fellow marathoners are cooking up today!!

30 Minutes Meals:
Priya Mahadavan

Seven Days of Salad:
Divya Vikram

For Ongoing 7 Events:
Priya Suresh
Suma Gandlur

Kids Friendly:

Seven Days of Rice:
Veena Krishnakumar
Priya Vaasu
Padma Rekha



  1. Interesting blend for the dressing!

  2. That is a new dressing idea - I know they use avocados in salads a lot - sadly, I developed allergies to their fat when I was pregnant with my 3rd child and have not had it since~

  3. Thanks Harini & Suma.

    Priya, ahh, that sounds terrible. My husband says that he gets short of breathe when he eats an avocado, I usually brush it off saying that he's over-reacting. May be he too is mildly allergic to avocado. I've to investigate on him a little further.

  4. The dressing sounds yum and salad is so inviting..

  5. Very innovative an colourful salad. Thanks for the crouton recipe..

  6. that's a fun salad you have there :)
    and making croutons at home is so easy !

  7. Pavani, the croutons sound so flavorful. Havent tried homemade croutons yet. Guess it is time to try.

  8. The avocado dressing looks absolutely delicious Pavani. I don't buy them that often and when I do, it usually ends up in a guacamole. Looking forward to the marathon recipes from you again :)

  9. Very Tempting Salad!!! I m always Stuck when it comes to Salad, now i will have some interesting recipes to try!!!!

  10. Innovative salad and looks colourful
    sounds delicious with croutons:)

  11. Very interesting and looks so yum pavani!

  12. The avocado dressing looks absolutely delicious, Pavani.
    There was a time I hated avocado and now, now I love everything about it, thanx to the wonderful world of blogging!

  13. Thats a crunchy,interesting and beautiful salad, love that dressing..

  14. This looks simple and wonderful. I bet you could make the croutons ahead of time and then it would take even less than 30 minutes!

  15. I bookmarked the cheese bread in KAF but haven't tried yet!
    Making crouton out of it is great!

  16. i like it that you made home made croutons!....the dressing surely sounds too good!...yum!

    Smitha's Spicy Flavors

  17. avacado dressing looks awesome. bookmarked:-)

  18. Looks more mexican ... love the color


  19. Looks more mexican ... love the color



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