donut saladFirst came the cronut. Then the donoli. I just heard about wonuts here in Chicago. Earlier this week on my Facebook page I wondered what the next donut hybrid might be. Dalad, perhaps – donut salad?

So how does one make a donut salad? Make a mixed greens donut, top it with some tomato and olive mini donuts, some French dressing donuts on top of that… But seriously, how are you supposed to eat that? If I’m going to create a nonsensical donut salad I intend to eat it. So instead, I made droutons – donut croutons – and I put them on top of a pretty great spicy black-eyed pea salad inspired by a non-vegan recipe. Want to try droutons? OK, here we go.

Vinaigrette: 

  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon ancho chili powder
  • Pinch of sugar
  • Kosher salt

Whisk all of the ingredients together in a small bowl and let rest at room temperature for an hour.

Cornbread Mini Donuts, or Droutons:

Prepare the cornbread batter as described in the original recipe. I used a mini donut maker, but you could also use a lightly greased mini donut pan following the manufacturer’s instructions. You will have lots of extras – eat them like crazy while they are still warm.

To assemble:

Prepare the vinaigrette and set aside while you prepare the black eyed peas. While the peas cook, start the croutons, and either get them into the oven or into the donut maker.  Transfer a serving of the peas and greens into a salad bowl and top with cripsy vegan bacon and croutons. Want to make your own vegan bacon? Here’s a recipe.