Vegan Caesar salad with creamy, briny, lemon-y, and tangy dressing, savory Parmesan "cheese", and crunchy chickpea croutons.
Preheat the oven to 400°F (205°C).
Drain and rinse the chickpeas. Dry them thoroughly using a kitchen towel or a paper towel. Place them on a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt. Using your hands, toss and coat. Roast the chickpea for 20 minutes, then gently roll them around in the baking sheet and roast for another 10-15 minutes, until golden brown. The chickpeas will firm up as they cool.
Add the soaked and drained cashews, water, olive oil, lemon juice, mustard, capers, garlic powder, and salt into a high-speed blender. Blend on high until smooth. You might have to scrape down the pitcher a few times.
Add the cashews, nutritional yeast, salt and garlic powder into a food processor. Pulse all the ingredients until finely chopped. It should look like a fine meal.
Wash the romaine lettuce and kale thoroughly. De-stem the kale. Then chop both the kale and the romaine into desired pieces.
Add the chopped romaine lettuce and kale into a large bowl. Pour in the dressing and mix until all the leafy greens are well coated. Top the salad with the chickpea croutons and vegan Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.
Store leftover salad covered in the refrigerator for a few days, though best within the first 24-48 hours. Note: the chickpea croutons do lose their crunchiness over time.
*1 (15 oz/425 g) can of chickpeas equals about 1 1/2 cups (246 g) cooked chickpeas.
**Soak the cashews in water for at least 8 hours (or overnight) so they soften up and are easy to blend. To quick-soak cashews, pour boiling hot water over the cashews and soak for 1 hour uncovered. When the cashews are done soaking, drain the water and rinse the cashews thoroughly.
***Prep time does not include soaking the cashews (8 hours).
This recipe has been adapted from MyVega.