Salad, Sides

Winter Slaw

It is the middle of bitter February, and work is crazy busy. We’re implementing a new server at work. We’re adding a new service. And to top it all off, my boss has decided to re-work how we do billing. So, in addition to this disruption to my work-life, it is tax season, which means I’m a grass widow. If we’re looking for the silver lining in all of this crazy, it just means that I can add as much citrus and mint to whatever I want. My husband tends to shy from both of those ingredients. I’m sure that it has nothing to do with the time I experimented with grapefruit and beet ice cream… Boom. Slaw with citrus and plenty of mint.

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Winter Slaw

1 head napa cabbage, thinly sliced

1 cup thinly sliced celery

1 tablespoon cilantro, chopped

1 tablespoon mint, chopped

1/4 cup sunflower seeds

1/4 cup golden raisins

1/4 cup almonds, chopped

1/2 cup mixed citrus segments

4 tablespoons light olive oil

3 tablespoons lime juice

3 tablespoons coconut vinegar

3 tablespoons maple syrup

2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

1 tablespoon coconut aminos

1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes

Assemble your dressing. Vigorously shake the oils, lime juice, vinegar, syrup, aminos and chili flakes in a jar. Arrange the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Toss the salad with the dressing and allow to sit for at least 30 minutes before serving.

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Salad, Sides

Green Beans in Green Sauce

The name of this light and bright sauce has a Dr. Seuss sort of style, reminiscent of “Green Eggs and Ham.” Well, I don’t think that it will take Sam-I-Am too much pestering to get you and yours to try these – yum!

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Green beans in green sauce

1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves

4 green onions, cleaned and roughly chopped

1/4 cup packed fresh parsley

1/4 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 tablespoon capers (drained)

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon anchovy paste

2 garlic cloves

2 pounds fresh green beans, stem end trimmed

Approximately 1 cup water

Steam you green beans in whatever steamer you use. My steamer usually likes to be supplied with about a cup of water, but you know your steamer better! (And if you’re really industrious and a forward-thinker, you could microwave a couple of bags of frozen green beans … way too easy!) Remove steamed green beans to a large bowl.

Blitz the remaining ingredients in your blender and pour over the green beans and toss to combine.

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Salad, Sides

Tarragon Potato Salad

Tarragon is a liquorice-like tasting herb that makes for a unique potato salad that is perfect for a summer barbecue or picnic.20150802_194112_Richtone(HDR)

Tarragon potato salad

3 pounds small, waxy potatoes

6 green onions, roots removed and coarsely chopped

1/3 cup olive oil

1/3 cup loosely packed parsley

3 tablespoons chopped tarragon leaves

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons coarsely ground mustard

4 hard boiled eggs

Boil the potatoes for about 25 minutes or until a fork slides into the potato easily. Remove from the water and chop in halves.

Blend the onions, olive oil, parsley, tarragon, vinegar and mustard. Mix this vinaigrette into the warm potatoes. Top with the hard boiled eggs on top of the potatoes.

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Salad, Sides

Dilly Bean Salad

When I was in the seventh grade my mother had a ginormous dill plant growing in the backyard, and the monarch butterflies knew it. That spring the whole plant was covered in monarch caterpillar, their yellow, black and white bodies inching up and down the stalks. My brother and I absconded with one into the house and kept it in a mesh tent for a few days before releasing it into the wild of our backyard again. If you walked past that caterpillar you were enveloped in a cloud of slightly-sweet and spicy dill aroma. That little guy really likes to chew on dill. If you like dill as much as that little caterpillar, this is the salad for you.

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Dilly bean salad

2 15oz cans northern white beans, drained and rinsed.

12 oz grape tomatoes, halved

One half of a large red onion (this will be about 3/4 cup red onion), diced

1/4 cup dill

1/2 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice (You can get this amount from one juicy lemon)

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 garlic cloves

Mix the beans, the tomatoes and the red onion in a large bowl.

Blitz the dill, olive oil, garlic, lemon juice and balsamic vinegar in a blender until combined. Mix the dressing with the bean mixture.

You can eat this right away, of course, but it is really much better after spending a day in the refrigerator.

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Salad

Watermelon Salad with Mint and Ginger

If there is a fruit that is better than watermelon in the summer, you let me know about it. Juice dripping down your chin, spitting the seeds into the yard, watermelon is the perfect summer food. This summer salad dresses watermelon up just a little bit, without losing any little bit of what makes it refreshing.

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Watermelon salad with mint and ginger

1 small watermelon (about four cups of watermelon)

4 coins ginger (one small thumb of ginger, skin removed and sliced)

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 cup walnut oil

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon sugar

Packed 1/4 cup mint

Remove the rind from the watermelon, and chop into small cubes.

Put the remaining ingredients in a blender and blend until well blended. You do not want any large pieces of ginger in here. Mix the dressing into the watermelon and stir to combine.

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Salad, Sides, Snacks

Raw Corn Slaw

Corn is such a fascinating food. If you think about how it became the food that we eat today, it takes you back to when our ancestors self-selected bigger and bigger grains of the grass-like teosinte from the fields until it became the giant ears that we shuck on the back porch before dinner. We have used it in ceremonies. We use it to make spirits. We distill it into an alcohol to power our cars. We most likely ate it at the first Thanksgiving. We are a corn people.

I wanted to have a fresh corn salad to enjoy on these hot summer days. We ate this salad spooned into avocados, but I suspect that this would be great on a taco or spooned on top of grilled chicken or steak.

Raw corn salad.

Raw corn slaw.

Raw corn slaw

Six ears corn

1/2 cup mayonnaise

2/3 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded

two limes, juiced

1/4 teaspoon paprika

1/8 teaspoon cayenne

salt and pepper

Remove the corn kernels from the cobs. As previously described in this ice cream recipe, I have found that chopping the corn cobs in half first makes the whole process easier. Put the corn kernels in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the remaining ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Pour the mayonnaise mixture over the corn and fold to combine.

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Salad, Sides, Snacks

B-Sprouts with umami sauce

The husband and I were super busy today running around and somewhere in between moving the hostas in the front yard and buying get-well-soon gifts for a friend we forgot to eat lunch. And breakfast. And it was suddenly two in the afternoon and we didn’t want to ruin dinner. Enter brussels sprouts with a nutritional yeast sauce – its fast, its full of fiber and nutrients and scores high on the comfort food quotient.

The b-sprouts.

The b-sprouts.

B-sprouts with umami sauce

1 package microwaveable frozen brussels sprouts

1 tablespoon nutritional yeast

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon black pepper

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Microwave the brussels sprouts according to the package directions. While the sprouts are in the microwave, mix the remaining ingredients in a medium size bowl. When the sprouts are done, add to the sauce mixture and toss. Eat and enjoy.

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Salad, Sides, Snacks

Chilled Beet Salad

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Reality check; my photography skills are less than professional.

Beets are one of my favorite vegetables. I love how light and airy they are compared to other root vegetables. I love their earthy flavor. I love the deep red-purple color. (I could go on and on here.) Let me just finish with: it seems like lots of people have not eaten beets, and are afraid to try them. Please do. I will accept if you do not like them, but please, give ’em a chance.

The thing about this salad is that it is really just a guide. You should really try blending some roasted garlic into the dressing, or sprinkle some chopped dill over the top.

Chilled Beet Salad

four to five beets

two tablespoons fresh orange juice

one tablespoon olive oil

salt

pepper

 

Roast the beets. I remove the greens (save these! EAT THEM!) and wash the beet, then wrap them individually in foil. I roast them in a baking dish at 350 for approximately an hour. This will largely depend on the size of the beets that you buy, so check on them at about 45 minutes, when they are done, they should give slightly to the touch. Remove from the oven and let them cool slightly. When you can handle them, remove the foil and remove the skin. This should be relatively easy, and the skin should slide off if you wrap your hands around the bulb and twist lightly. By the way, you are going to get red juice all over your hands. Embrace this.

Quarter (or sixteenth?) the beets. Throw caution to the wind, and just chop the things into bite-sized pieces.

Mix the remaining ingredients. Slosh the dressing over the beets and let it soak in for a minute. You could eat this right now, or you can chill it in the fridge for maybe twenty minutes for a great chilled salad on a hot day.

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Main Courses, Salad

Chilled Peanut Chicken Salad

Peanut Chicken Salad

Peanut Chicken Salad

My husband loves when chicken is involved in dinner. We tend to roast or boil chicken, and then use the meat in soups or salads. So someone needs to pick the meat from the carcasses. So that someone is my husband. He would never, ever, give up that job.

Chilled Peanut Chicken Salad

Dressing

1/2 cup neutral flavored oil

1/3 cup unfiltered apple cider vinegar

2 tablespoons gluten free soy sauce

1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil

1/2 tablespoon honey

1/2 teaspoon ginger, minced

1/4 cup chunky peanut butter

black pepper

Salad

Lettuce leaves, romaine or red

2 cups (approximate) roasted chicken

1/2 lbs asparagus, trimmed and chopped into bite-sized pieces

1 red bell pepper, trimmed and sliced.

 

For the dressing:

1. Mix! Easy!

 

For the salad:

1. Steam the asparagus. Fill a pot with a small amount of water, and steam the asparagus in a steamer basket until the asparagus is just crisp tender. The asparagus will turn a bright green when it is done.

2. Mix chicken, asparagus and red pepper, and pour the dressing over.

3. Arrange lettuce on plates and place the salad on top.

 

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Main Courses, Salad, Sides

Lentil Salad with sun-dried tomatoes and dill

 

Lentil salad with sun-dried tomatoes and dill.

Lentil salad with sun-dried tomatoes and dill.

 

Some days I just want to give up. Do you have those days? I had one. Things started to go sour in the morning, and never sweetened. To make things worse, at about 4:50 I let the stress get to me, and I ate far, far too many mini chocolate bars. What an imbroglio today turned out to  be.

On days like this, I want to come home to something like this. Something that feels wholesome. Plus, it was already waiting for me in the fridge. Thank you, weekend me, for making dinner for today.

Lentil Salad with sun-dried tomatoes and dill

1 small red onion, sliced thinly

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/3 cup green lentils

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 garlic clove, crushed

black pepper

3 oz feta cheese

3 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes

fresh dill, chopped

fresh parsley, chopped

 

1. Place the red onion in a small bowl, and sprinkle with salt and the red wine vinegar. Stir, leave until slightly soft.

2. Boil lentils for 20-30 minutes until tender. Drain when done, and add remaining ingredients, save the herbs. Add herbs when the lentils are cool.

 

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