salad

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

Since the Labor Day weekend is almost here I thought I would post one of my favorite salad recipes. The sweet potato salad is always a hit. It goes so well with grilled foods, too. I always make a double batch – it goes fast. The tricky part is not to overcook the sweet potatoes. They cook fast.  Keep an eye on them and get the potatoes into cold water to stop the cooking once they are tender.

 

 

 

 

Sweet Potato Salad

 3 large sweet potatoes

2 c. corn kernels, fresh off the cob preferred but frozen is O.K.

2 ribs celery, sliced

1 sweet onion, diced

1 c. sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

2-3 T. fresh parsley

1/3 c.  oil

1 t. Dijon mustard

3 T. apple cider vinegar

1 T. lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

½ c. cashews

In medium saucepan boil or steam potatoes until tender, about 20-25  minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and place in a large bowl of ice water. Add corn to saucepan and cook until just tender about 2-3 minutes. Drain corn and add to ice water with the potatoes. Once the vegetables have cooled down drain them and peel and cut the potatoes into bite-sized pieces. Place potatoes and corn in a mixing bowl with remaining vegetables. Combine remaining ingredients, except cashews,  in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake well before pouring over the sweet potato mixture. Toss to blend and chill until ready to serve.  Add cashews just before serving. Serves 6.

Pear Salad with Feta and Bacon

Pear Salad with Feta and Bacon

Pear Salad with Feta and Bacon

I made this salad for a cooking class the other day. It was, as always, well received. The sweetness of the pears with the salty cheese and smoky bacon work so well together. The addition of toasted nuts adds just that extra something that works in this dish. I used walnuts this time, but love this salad with pecans, too. Serve over greens for a great and easy meal.

 

 

 

Pear Salad with Feta and Bacon

8- 10 cups mixed salad greens, washed, dried and torn into bite-sized pieces
3 ripe pears, cored and sliced thin
¾ c. crumbled feta cheese
8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
½ c. toasted pecans, but other nuts can be used
5 T. cider vinegar
½ c. oil
Fresh chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
In large bowl place greens. Add pears, feta bacon and pecans. Combine remaining ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake well. Toss over greens and divide into serving dishes. Serves 6-8.

Cucumbers and Sour Cream

Cucumbers and Sour Cream

Cucumbers and Sour Cream

Feeling nostalgic today. I was looking for a cool salad for  dinner. I had a couple of cucumbers and an open container of sour cream. Seemed like the best solution. Later we will have it with grilled quesadillas.  The coolness of the salad will go well with the rest of the meal.It made me think of childhood summers. It was one of the first dishes I can remember helping my Mother make. She let me slice the cucumbers and mix the dressing. It seemed we often had it on the weekends when my Father was grilling.I can’t make this salad without thinking of the wonderful smells wafting into the kitchen from that grill. I’d pop the salad into the fridge and then run out to check on what my dad was doing. Sometimes he needed a platter to bring the food in on, or maybe just a cold drink. I would watch in fascination at his skill in cooking over the hot coals. Nothing tastes as good at something off the grill. It’s funny how certain foods bring on certain memories.

Cucumbers and Sour Cream

2-3 medium cukes, sliced
1 c. sour cream or strained yogurt
¼ c. sugar
¼ c. vinegar
2 green onions, chopped
1 –2 T. chopped fresh dill or 1-2 t. dried

Combine all ingredients and chill at least 10 minutes. Serves 4-6.

Tortellini Artichoke Salad

Tortellini and Artichoke Salad

Tortellini and Artichoke Salad

With warmer weather I wanted a dish that could be a side salad or a main dish and require little cooking. I came up with this tortellini  and artichoke salad. I had some frozen cheese tortellini that only required 5 minutes of gentle simmering.  I also had some garlic scapes and a large scallion I got at Blue Pike Farm the other day. Zest and juice from fresh limes added some extra zip.

Tortellini Artichoke Salad 

1 lb. cheese tortellini, cooked and cooled

1 can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

1/2 c. oil

1/2 c. chopped garlic scapes*

1/2 c. chopped green onion

zest of 1 lime

juice of 2 limes

1/4 c. chopped cilantro

hot sauce to taste –  I used about 2 teaspoons

salt and pepper to taste

Combine tortellini and artichoke hearts and set aside. Heat oil in skillet and cook scapes and green onion until crispy- about 5 minutes. Pour skillet contents into tortellini mixture, including the oil. Add remaining ingredients. Adjust seasonings,. Chill at least a couple of hours. Serves 8 as a side dish, 4 as a main dish.

*garlic scapes are the stems of garlic plants that are cut off the garlic plants to produce bigger cloves. They taste like garlic and look like curly green onions. If you don’t have garlic scapes add extra green onion and some fresh minced garlic to the dish.

Garlic scapes and a scallion

Garlic scapes and a scallion

Multi Bean Salad

Multi Bean Salad

Multi Bean Salad

I’ve been on a salad kick lately. Maybe the high temps have something to do with that. I was talking to my friend, Mari, last night and we were talking about favorite salads. We both agreed that we love bean salad. As a kid I remember my Mom’s three bean salad. I find myself making this dish with more than three types of beans. Everyone seems to have their favorite combination. I start with green beans and then check out my pantry for what other beans to add. Here is the one I made this time.

Multi- Bean Salad

1 lb. cooked green beans, sliced

1 can lima beans, rinsed and drained

1 can dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained

1 medium sweet onion, chopped

1/2 c. chopped fresh parsley

1 c. apple cider vinegar

1/4 c. sugar

1/4 c. oil

 2 T. Tuscan seasoning- or whatever herb blend you like

1 T. hot sauce, or to taste

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine beans with onions and parsley in a medium bowl. Combine remaining ingredients in a small bowl and pour over the bean mixture. Stir well and chill a couple of hours before serving. Serves 8.

Smoky Succotash Salad

Smoky Succotash Salad

Smoky Succotash Salad

I was looking for a salad idea the other day and found the answer in my freezer. I had a bag of lima beans and some corn from last year. I also had a ham bone. Not what you might think of for a salad but I needed it to work. I started by putting the ham bone in a pot with some water and let it simmer for an hour or so- to get some of the flavor out. I added the lima beans and corn and cooked them until tender- about 10 minutes. I figured this would add flavor to them. I drained off the veggies, let them cool, and combined them with a sweet pepper and ham I’d cut off the bone. I still needed a dressing and since I had an open container of sour cream I used that. Here is the recipe I ended up with. It ended up tasting really good. Went well with steaks and tuna off the grill.

Smoky Succotash Salad

1 lb. lima beans, cooked and cooled

4 c. corn off the cob, cooked and cooled

1 sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

1-2 c. cooked ham, diced

Dressing:

2/3 c. sour cream

3 T. apple cider vinegar

2 T. sugar

1 t. grated ginger

1 t. hot sauce, or to taste

salt and pepper to taste

Combine veggies with the ham in medium bowl. In small bowl stir together dressing ingredients until smooth and toss with the veggie mixture. Chill until ready to serve. Serves 6.

Carrot and Cabbage Salad

Carrot and Cabbage Salad

Carrot and Cabbage Salad

I love a good salad. I also like to make dishes that can travel well when I am visiting with friends. After a conversation with a friend the other day about her having to travel for a family event and bring food along I was inspired to come up with this recipe. Similar to a cole slaw this salad has an equal share of carrots and an herb-infused dressing that gives it a great flavor.  It can be made a couple of days ahead, if needed, and is better if you make it the night before.

Carrot and Cabbage Salad

1 lb. carrots, peeled and shredded

1 lb. shredded cabbage- you can use the cole slaw mixes sold in stores

Dressing:

2/3  c. apple cider vinegar or herb flavored vinegar

1/2 c. oil

1/4 c. sugar, or to taste

1 T. salad and vegetable seasoning-recipe follows- or 1 T. dried herbs of your choice

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine veggies in a bowl. Combine dressing ingredients in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake well to combine. Adjust seasonings. Pour dressing over the veggies and stir to mix well. Cover and chill for several hours or overnight. Serves 10-12.

Salad and Vegetable Seasoning

½ c. dried parsley
¼ c. dried minced onion
1 T. dried thyme
1-T. celery seeds
2 t. dried oregano
1 t. dried marjoram
1-t. dill seeds

Combine all ingredients and store in a cool, dry, dark place. Makes about a cup. Use in salad dressings or on cooked veggies and in soups and stews.

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

This is one of the dishes I made for a dinner with friends last night. I had forgotten about this dish. I used to make it a lot more often. It is a great change up from regular potato salad and a nice side for all sorts of meals. We had it with duck but a friend of mine is planning on serving it with her ham dinner planned for next week. The secret is to watch the sweet potatoes carefully when cooking them. You need to get them cooked, but not mushy. I steam them- either traditionally or in the microwave and check them often. Once they get to the right degree of “cooked” I put them in cold water to stop the cooking.

Sweet Potato Salad

 3 large sweet potatoes

2 c. corn kernels, fresh off the cob preferred but frozen is O.K.

2 ribs celery, sliced

1 sweet onion, diced

1 c. sweet pepper, seeded and chopped

2-3 T. fresh parsley

1/3 c.  oil

1 t. Dijon mustard

3 T. apple cider vinegar

1 T. lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

½ c. cashews

 In medium saucepan boil or steam potatoes until tender, about 20-25  minutes. Remove with slotted spoon and place in a large bowl of ice water. Add corn to saucepan and cook until just tender about 2-3 minutes. Drain corn and add to ice water with the potatoes. Once the vegetables have cooled down drain them and peel and cut the potatoes into bite-sized pieces. Place potatoes and corn in a mixing bowl with remaining vegetables. Combine remaining ingredients, except cashews,  in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake well before pouring over the sweet potato mixture. Toss to blend and chill until ready to serve.  Add cashews just before serving. Serves 6.

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

New Release: