I've become addicted to miso sesame carrot dressing, and it's a wonderful thing.

Growing up, we'd always go to Doug's for Japanese food -- it's really called Yuki Sushi, but I was one of the owner, Doug's, favorite little customers, so it became "Doug's!" I'd always order chicken teriyaki bento and it came with this delicious side salad with crisp iceberg, little julienned carrots and cabbage and this slightly creamy miso sesame dressing with an orange hue. I called it "Japanese caesar" but could never figure out what made it so darn good.

A few weeks ago we had it at a local Berkeley restaurant and had to figure out how to make it at home. Turns out it's SO SO SIMPLE: Carrot, ginger, garlic, sesame oil, miso, rice vinegar, and sugar. If you want it creamy then add a dollop of mayo (or Kewpie if you want it to be like the original)!

We've been putting the dressing on every salad we can think up! It's good on a basic iceberg or romaine and even great on a coleslaw in place of mayo. Our favorite way to have it though, is with this snap pea salad.

Miso Sesame Carrot Dressing

1 carrot, grated

1 tbsp miso paste

1 tbsp sesame oil

1 tsp sugar

1 minced garlic clove

1 tsp minced ginger

4 tbsp rice vinegar

1 tsp sesame seeds

Fresh ground pepper

1. Grate carrot with a microplane or small setting on a cheese grater. Use the microplane to mince ginger and garlic or finely mince.

2. Add all ingredients to a bowl and stir until combined. Top on your salad!

3. Bonus: If you want it creamy, add 1 tbsp of mayo!

Japanese Miso Snap Pea Salad

1 lb of snap peas

1 carrot1 ear of corn

3 stalks green onions

1/2 cup peanuts

1 tbsp sesame seeds

Miso Sesame Carrot Dressing (above!)

1. Roast peanuts in the oven for 5-10 minutes till lightly golden.

2. Rise and peel the little stems off your snap peas and cut in half or thirds for bite-sized pieces. 

3. Grate 1 carrot on medium setting (not using the microplane) and finely chop green onions.

4. Add all ingredients to a bowl and toss to coat.

You can let this salad marinate overnight covered in the fridge and the flavors will absorb, or serve immediately!