Category Archives: Salad

Big Noise

Simple Beet Salad

beets

Summer is most certainly here – hitting over 100 degrees earlier this week before the heat index!  I’m trying to stay as cool as possible in the house, so avoiding the oven as much as possible.  Thankfully the local farmers’ markets are BOOMING with fresh and delicious produce making it super easy to make healthy dinners that don’t require much cook time.  With this simple salad the trick is to slice the beets on the thin side so that they can be cooked in under 7 minutes, nice and crispy on the outside and melt in your mouth delicious in the middle.

Big Noise

Ingredients

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

3 tbsps shallots, thinly sliced

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

6 medium beets, peeled and sliced (about 1 lb)

3 ounces soft fresh goat cheese, coarsely crumbled

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. The night before, place the beets and oils in a tupperware and toss well.
  2. 10 minutes before supper, heat a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the beets in a single layer and cook for 3-5 minutes or until crispy - then flip and repeat.
  3. Turn heat off and leave beets in pan to slightly cool. Season to taste with salt and pepper - and do a final stir in the oils.
  4. Remove to salad plates and top with goat cheese.
http://dancingveggies.com/2016/07/big-noise.html

To make it even quicker to get dinner on the table, I prepped them the night before so that they could soak in the oils.   We enjoyed these with a cold pasta salad, which had also been prepped the night before!  I find it so much easier to cook right before bed (and after dessert) and since it’s cooler outside the kitchen doesn’t become a mini-furnace.

Like to Meet

Wild Rice Salad
Wild Rice Salad

Still on #babywatch here but using that to my advantage to get back to blogging since I’m still feeling pretty good.  I know for most people the second trimester is THE trimester but I’m still saying that the third is the best – even though I’m at the point where I want to meet the little one.   Last weekend my mom and sister came up and we stocked our freezer full of delicious vegetarian treats, some that have been featured here, a few from my SRC blog last week, and some other random ones from the internet.  The random ones I plan to feature here as we make them as I was able to test the changes I made, we just made them!  Some of them I’m not worried about,  such as switching in vegetable stock for chicken or doubling beans/vegetables in place of ground meat, while the ones involving switching chicken for tofu could be a bit more interesting.  Enough about that, time for today’s recipe.

This recipe is about as easy as it gets – and since it can be served hot or cold it can be on the table in under 30 minutes!  Thanks to the warm fall a few of the local markets are still selling cherry and plum tomatoes, so I took advantage and grabbed a pint of some yellow cherries.  From there, dinner created itself!

Wild Rice Salad

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 cup wild rice

2 cups chickpeas, presoaked and rinsed

2 tbsp virgin olive oil

1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 tsp fresh rosemary

1 tsp fresh thyme

4 basil leaves, chopped

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved and lightly salted

1/2 mozzarella balls

Instructions

  1. Cook the wild rice per instructions, then rinse in cold water.
  2. Place the wild rice in a large bowl with the chickpeas and tomatoes, then stir in the oils and herbs along with any tomato water (from pre-salting).
  3. Top with the mozzarella cheese. Serve and enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/11/like-to-meet.html

I served this naked but to stretch it even further, and to give it a bigger nutritional boost, serve over some massaged kale or baby spinach.  Make sure to add extra oil if there happen to be leftovers, otherwise the rice will dry out and start to clump.   However I doubt there will be any leftovers as this dish is FANTASTIC!  I kept my cold the next day while Joe warmed his up in order to melt the cheese – but there is no right or wrong way to enjoy this dish.

On the Shore

Waldorf Salad

IMG_20150404_195749

Welcome to Part 2 of my #partylikeamadman – again with a huge thanks to my in-laws for allowing me to use their kitchen since ours is still in construction mode!   In going through the Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook, one of my favorite parts was how each recipe included not only information about the episode the dish was featured in but also facts about the origin of the recipe.  In the case of the Waldorf Salad, the cookbook also included information about the evolution of the salad – as well as two versions of the dish.  I went with the classic dish, adding some grapes for an extra POP of color.     I served this for a large group of people but due to taste preference not all ingredients were increased the same way.  The first recipe is how I served it, while the second one is the original recipe plus grapes.

 

Waldorf Salad

Serves: Serves 8 as a side

Original Recipe: 2 apples 1/2 cup grapes 1 cup iced hearts of celery 5 tbsp seasoned mayo Lettuce for serving

Ingredients

8 apples, peeled

2 cups diced heart of celery

2 cups grapes

1/3 cup mayo

Lettuce, for serving

Salt and Pepper for seasoning

Instructions

  1. Peel and core the apples, divided in half and then cut in to slices. Reserve 12 slices, and cut the remainder into thin julienne strips.
  2. Combine the apple strips with the celery and toss with half of the mayo. Fold in the grapes
  3. Season to taste then place the mixture in the middle of a salad bowl and spread with the mayo. Garnish with the lettuce and the reserved apple slices.
  4. Serve and Enjoy!

Notes

Since this was part of a Seder dinner, the mayo was limited to Kosher for Passover and with that unseasoned.

http://dancingveggies.com/2015/04/on-the-shore.html

I wound up making this dish twice – the first version wound up with a technical problem in that I was the one taking the picture.  The second time around I served this up as part of our Seder dinner and it was the perfect fit (and quite the hit!).   I am so glad I was able to participate in this Mad Men Party,  and look forward to having a finished kitchen so that I can try out some of the more elaborate dishes in the book!

My Darling

 Bulgar Wheat Beet Salad

bulgar_wheat_beets

Welcome to my second post for #TripleSBites!  My first post can be found here and it features some spicy Brussels Sprouts

I’ve had so much fun with this challenge – trying to think up dishes that are saucy, spicy, and sexy while still staying within the normal parameters of this blog (cheap, healthy, vegetarian).  Tonight’s dish is certainly healthy, and as long as shopping in the bulk bin section of your grocery store it should be on the cheap side, while the vegetarian goes without saying- this dish can also easily go vegan by swapping the goat cheese for a soft cashew cheese or leaving it out all together.  This salad is actually one of the first dishes I wanted to do, but it has gone through a few versions.  The original concept involved endive boats with roasted beets, bulgur, and goat cheese which then evolved into cucumber boats stuffed with raw beets, bulgur, and goat cheese – both topped with a balsamic dressing.  Yet, something always seemed to be missing.  Then I received another sponsor goody, this time a bottle of Roasted Beet Vinaigrette thanks to Out of the Weeds – and finally had my missing component.

Bulgur Wheat Beet Salad

Serves: Serves 4

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 tbsp Gourmet Garden Italian Herbs

1/2 vidalia onion, diced

2 cups water

1 cup bulgur wheat, pre-rinsed

1 cucumber, diced

2 roma tomates, diced

1 cup chickpeas, pre-soaked

1/2 cup goat cheese (optional), crumbled

radicchio lettuce leaves (two per serving)

1/4 cup Out of the Weeds Roasted Beet Dressing

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add the garlic and onion and cook for 7 minutes before adding the herbs. Cook for an additional minute, stirring to prevent burning
  2. Add the water and bulgur wheat and bring to a quick boil before adding the chickpeas. Then cover and turn heat to low, simmering for 20 minutes.
  3. Fluff the bulgur then stir in the Roasted Beet dressing along with the cucumber and tomato.
  4. Line a bowl with two of the radicchio leaves (creating a mini bowl) and serve the bulgur salad in the middle. Top with the crumbled goat cheese (optional)
  5. Serve and Enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/02/my-darling.html

As a bonus, the dressing turned my dish a fantastic shade of pink – which is rather perfect for the upcoming holiday!  The radicchio offered a tart contrast to the earthy beets while the cucumber provided a needed crunch.  The fact that the dressing turned everything pink (seriously, pink!!!) just added a whole new level of awesome.  Dropping the chickpeas and reducing the portion size would turn this pink treat in to a fantastic side for herb crusted tofu, fish, or chicken.

Note:  I received Out of the Weeds Roasted Beets Dressing as part of the #TripleS blog challenge, which started February 2nd.  I was not required to use the products, or post anything about them outside of acknowledging that I received them, so all opinions and experiences are my own.  

Did I mention there are 19 (!) other awesome bloggers participating in TripleSBites?!?  Make sure to check them all out:

We are the

Watermelon Feta Salad

watermelon_feta_salad

Getting back in to the swing of things and also getting back in to the swing of /r/52weeksofcooking.  One of the weeks I missed was a tribute to melons, no other rules or restrictions just all about the melon.  I knew from the start I wanted to do something with watermelon, it’s hard to pass by a stand on the Eastern Shore and not be amazed by the size and number of watermelons they have for sale.  As an added bonus, I inherited half a watermelon a few weekends ago when Joe and I went out to the shore.  After a quick internal debate of gazpacho vs. salad, I decided to go with the salad since there was only half left and I wanted something edible at the end of the adventure. The first time I heard of a watermelon salad, outside of the typical fruit salad, was on Top Chef back when Richard Blais made his first appearance. I then had it for the first time a number of years after, at a friend’s baby shower. Recently I’ve seen it popping up on seasonal menus around the Baltimore area, including a rooftop BBQ hosted by a friend! There are a few different versions with the variation normally in the herb choice. Some use basil, others use mint, and some use both, because why not? I went with basil alone, but as with any recipe there is no one way to make it.

We are the

Serves 6-8, as a side

Ingredients

3 cups watermelon, cubed or balled

1 cup Feta, crumbled

1 tbsp fresh basil, sliced

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl combine the watermelon and Feta. Place in the fridge until 10 minutes before serving.
  2. Meanwhile stir together the basil and balsamic vinegar. 10 minutes before serving pour the dressing over the watermelon and gently toss.
  3. Allow to sit for a few minutes, then toss again, and Serve!
http://dancingveggies.com/2014/09/we-are-the.html

This salad was fantastic!  I served it alongside my SRC recipe and it provided the perfect light and sweet contrast to the spicetastic dish.   I still had some watermelon left over, even after making another round of salad – and looking forward to sharing that sweet treat sometime next week!!!