• quinoa salad
    from How To Cook Everything Vegetarian

    2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa or other small-kernel grain or 1 cup raw
    1 large or 2 medium (about 1 pound) sweet potatoes
    1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and diced
    1/4 cup minced red onion or shallot
    Freshly ground black pepper
    1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (I cut this in half)
    2 tablespoons balsamic, sherry or red wine vinegar
    1/4 cup minced fresh chives or parsley leaves


    If you haven’t already, cook the quinoa or other grain according to package directions.  Drain in a strainer and rinse.  Meanwhile, peel the sweet potato and dice it into 1/2-inch or smaller pieces.  Cook it in boiling water to cover until tender, about 15 minutes; drain well.

    Toss together the quinoa, potato, bell pepper, and onion; sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Whisk the oil and vinegar together and toss the salad with about half of this mixture; add all or some of the rest to taste.  Taste and adjust the seasoning, garnish with the chives (or parsley) and serve.

  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
    1 large carrot, shredded
    1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
    1/2 pound sugar snap peas, halved
    2 cups chopped, cooked chicken breast meat
    1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
    1/2 cup blanched slivered almonds, toasted
    2 tablespoons white sugar
    2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
    1 1/2 tablespoons sesame oil
    1 tablespoon teriyaki sauce
    1/4 teaspoon  ground dry mustard

    In a large bowl, mix together the onions, carrot, red pepper, peas, chicken, cilantro and almonds. Set aside.

    In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar, vinegar, sesame oil, teriyaki sauce and dry mustard until smooth. Pour over salad mixture and toss until coated. Serve in pita pockets or on a bed of lettuce.

  • Salad, Seafood 14.05.2009 No Comments

    from Gordon Ramsay’s Healthy Appetite

    serves 2-3

    3 1/2 oz. thin rice noodles
    drizzle of sesame oil
    7 oz snow peas or sugar snap peas
    1 large sweet red pepper
    1 large sweet yellow pepper
    2 green onions
    7 oz. peeled, cooked shrimp
    handful of cilantro leaves
    1 TBS toasted black or white sesame seeds
    1 shallot, peeled and finely chopped
    2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely crushed
    1 small red chile, seeded and minced
    2-3 TBS lime juice, or more to taste
    2 TBS fish sauce
    1 TBS light soy sauce
    2 1/2 TBS jaggery or soft brown sugar
    2 TBS toasted sesame oil


    Bring a kettle of water to a boil.  Place the rice noodles in a large heatproof bowl and pour on boiling water, ensuring that the noodles are fully immersed.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let stand for 5 minutes, or until the noodles are tender but still retaining a bite.  Drain and immediately toss with a drizzle of sesame oil to sop them from sticking together.

    In the meantime, blanch the snow peas in a pan of boiling water for 2 minutes until they are just tender, but still bright green.  Refresh in a bowl of iced water, then drain well.  Cut the snow peas on the diagonal into 2 or 3 pieces.  Halve, core, and seed the peppers, then cut into long, thin slices.  Trim and finely slice the green onions on the diagonal.

    For the dressing, put all the ingredients into a bowl and whisk lightly to combine.

    Put the shrimp, green onions, snow peas and peppers into a large bowl and add the drained noodles, cilantro leaves and sesame seeds.  Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well to coat.  Eat immediately, or chill until ready to serve.

    Note: If you are preparing this salad for a packed lunch, let the noodles cool completely before tossing with the other ingredients.

  • Salad 14.04.2009 No Comments

    from POM Wonderful

    1 cup arils from 1-2 large pomegranates
    4 ounces prosciutto, cut into 1/2-inch strips
    1/2 pound broccoli, cut into florets (about 2 cups)
    1/2 pound cauliflower, cut into florets (about 2 cups)
    1/2 cup red onion, thinly sliced
    1 cup seedless grapes, cut in half
    1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins
    3 tablespoons fresh basil, cut into strips
    1/2 cup plain yogurt
    1/2 cup mayonnaise
    2 tablespoons whole grain dijon mustard
    1 tablespoon sugar
    juice from 2-3 pomegranates or 1 cup of 100% pomegranate juice
    salt and pepper to taste


    Prepare fresh pomegranate juice if needed.

    Score 1-2 pomegranates and place in a bowl of water.  Break open the pomegranates under water to free the arils (seeds).  The arils will sink to the bottom of the bowl and the membrane will float to the top.  Sieve and put the arils in a separate bowl.  Reserve 1 cup of the arils and set aside.  Refrigerate or freeze the remaining arils for another use.

    Cook prosciutto strips in a nonstick skillet over mediuim heat until crisp.

    In a bowl, toss together the broccoli, cauliflower, grapes, dried cranberries and basil.

    In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, mayonnaise, mustard, sugar and pomegranate juice.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

    Toss the dressing with the salad.  Add the pomegranate arils and the prosciutto.

    Serves 6

  • Serving Size  : 30

    2               cups  lettuce — thinly sliced
    2                     Roma tomatoes — diced small
    1/8           cup  red onion — sliced paper thin
    1/2           cup  radishes — diced
    1/2           cup  cilantro leaves, whole — coarsely chopped
    2                     avocados — cubed
    1         tablespoon  olive oil
    3        tablespoons  lime juice — about 2 limes
    1/4      teaspoon  ground cumin
    1               dash  garlic powder
    salt and pepper — to taste
    2           packages  phyllo dough — shells, thawed
    extra cilantro for garnish — optional

    Combine all the ingredients except for the phyllo shells in a large mixing bowl.  Toss gently to evenly distribute ingredients.

    Fill each phyllo cup with a portion of the salad.  Top with the optional cilantro if desired.

    The salad cups can be made up to a few hours ahead of time.  In the case of preparing ahead, toss the avocado cubes with extra lime juice or Fruit Fresh to preserve their color.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 33 Calories; 3g Fat (71.7% calories from fat); trace Protein; 2g Carbohydrate; 1g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 9mg Sodium.  Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 0 Lean Meat; 0 Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 1/2 Fat.

    NOTES : Consider this salad as a blank canvas to build upon as desired.  Leftover chicken, pork, beef, shrimp or even chopped hard cooked eggs would make this a more substantial appetizer.  Add any fresh vegetables you would like, and omit any you don’t care for.  Shredded cheese would make an excellent addition, and a few dashes of hot sauce would please anyone with a taste for something spicy.

  • Serving Size  : 6    

    6        tablespoons  fresh blood orange juice
    1 1/2      teaspoons  rice vinegar
    1           teaspoon  honey
    1/4           cup  olive oil
    1/4           cup  mayonnaise
    1 1/2    tablespoons  chopped shallot
    1        1 1/4 pound  savoy cabbage — halved, sliced 1/4 inch thick
    1 1/2          pound  head of radicchio — halved, sliced 1/4 inch thick
    1              large  red bell pepper — sliced
    1/2           cup  dried cranberries

    Whisk juice, vinegar, and honey in bowl. Whisk in oil, then mayonnaise and shallot. Season with salt and pepper. Pour into jar with lid; chill 2 hours. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.

    Place cabbage, radicchio, and bell pepper in large bowl. Just before serving, shake dressing well and pour over vegetables; toss. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle dried cranberries over.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 206 Calories; 17g Fat (69.5% calories from fat); 4g Protein; 13g Carbohydrate; 4g Dietary Fiber; 3mg Cholesterol; 102mg Sodium.  Exchanges: 0 Grain(Starch); 2 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 2 1/2 Fat; 0 Other Carbohydrates.

    NOTES : Pomegranate juice makes an excellent sub when you can’t find orange juice.  This one’s a keeper.

  • Serving Size  : 8

    1 butternut squash — peeled, seeded and cut into cubes
    2 teaspoons  olive oil
    salt and pepper — to taste
    1 can  black beans — drained and rinsed (15 oz. can)
    1 bell pepper — seeded and diced
    1/2 cup  red onion — diced fine
    1jalapeno — seeded and finely diced
    3 tablespoons  fresh parsley — chopped
    5 slices  bacon — cooked and crumbled
    Spicy Sweet Vinagrette:
    1/3 cup  apple cider vinegar
    2 tablespoons  honey
    1/2 teaspoon  red pepper flakes
    1/4 cup  fresh lemon juice — juice from 1 lemon
    1teaspoon  lemon zest
    1/3 cup  olive oil
    salt and pepper — to taste

    Preheat the oven to 400ºF.  Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.

    Place the cubed butternut squash on the baking sheet, drizzle with the olive oil, and sprinkle with the salt and pepper to taste.  Mix it around a bit to evenly distribute the oil and seasonings

    Bake in the oven for about 35 minutes, stirring the squash twice during baking, until the edges are golden brown and the squash is easily pierced with a fork.

    Meanwhile, place the black beans in a microwave safe bowl and cook on high for three minutes, or until the beans are nice and hot. Prepare the vinaigrette by placing all the ingredients into a mason jar with a tight-sealing lid and shake vigorously for about 30 seconds.

    Gently put the cooked squash in a large mixing bowl.   Add the black beans, bell pepper, onion, jalapeno, parsley and 1/2 cup of the vinaigrette.  Toss gently and season with a touch of salt and pepper if desired.

    Transfer the salad to a serving bowl or platter.  Top with bacon crumbles. Serve with extra dressing on the side.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 319 Calories; 13g Fat (33.5% calories from fat); 9g Protein; 48g Carbohydrate; 8g Dietary Fiber; 3mg Cholesterol; 75mg Sodium.  Exchanges: 2 1/2 Grain(Starch); 1/2 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 0 Fruit; 2 1/2 Fat; 1/2 Other Carbohydrates.

  • slightly adapted from Williams-Sonoma Picnics and Tailgates

    6 beets, about 2 pounds, trimmed and scrubbed
    1/4 cup coarsely chopped pecans
    2 tablespoons orange juice
    1 teaspoon real balsamic vinegar **see note
    1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    1/4 cup olive oil
    salt and ground pepper
    1 tablespoon freshly snipped chives

    Preheat the oven to 425ºF.  Place the beets in a small roasting pan and pour in water to a depth of 1/4 inch.  Cover the pan with aluminum foil and roast the beets until fork-tender, about 45 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let cool.

    Reduce the oven temperature to 350ºF.  Spread the nuts on a baking sheet and toast in the oven until lightly browned and fragrant, 5-7 minutes.  Remove from the oven and set aside.

    Remove the skins from the beets and cut into 1/2 inch pieces.  Transfer to a transportable bowl, cover, and refrigerate.

    In a small bowl, whisk together the orange juice, vinegar, and Dijon mustard.  Slowly whisk in the olive oil until incorporated.  Season to taste with salt and pepper and add the chives.

    Pour the dressing over the beets and toss to coat evenly.  Sprinkle with the toasted nuts.  Cover and keep cool until ready to serve.  Serve chilled or at room temperature.

    Serves six.

    **Note:  I made this recipe using authentic balsamic vinegar- the kind that is thick like a syrup, with a bright, vibrant fruity flavor.  If the only balsamic vinegar you have is the watery version that we’re all used to, then increase the balsamic to a full tablespoon.

  • Salad, Seafood 02.06.2008 2 Comments

    from Barefoot Contessa at Home,

    Kosher salt
    Good olive oil
    3/4 pound orzo pasta (rice-shaped pasta)
    1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (3 lemons)
    Freshly ground black pepper
    2 pounds (16 to 18 count) shrimp, peeled and de-veined
    1 cup minced scallions, white and green parts
    1 cup chopped fresh dill
    1 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
    1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and medium-diced
    1/2 cup small-diced red onion
    3/4 pound good feta cheese, large diced

    Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
    Fill a large pot with water, add 1 tablespoon of salt and a splash of oil, and bring the water to a boil. Add the orzo and simmer for 9 to 11 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it’s cooked al dente. Drain and pour into a large bowl. Whisk together the lemon juice, 1/2 cup olive oil, 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper. Pour over the hot pasta and stir well.

    Meanwhile, place the shrimp on a sheet pan, drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to combine and spread out in a single layer. Roast for 5 to 6 minutes, until the shrimp are cooked through. Don’t overcook!

    Add the shrimp to the orzo and then add the scallions, dill, parsley, cucumber, onion, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Toss well. Add the feta and stir carefully. Set aside at room temperature for 1 hour to allow the flavors to blend, or refrigerate overnight. If refrigerated, taste again for seasonings and bring back to room temperature before serving.

  • by Ina Garten

    8                     split chicken breasts (bone in — skin on)
    Good olive oil
    Kosher salt
    Freshly ground black pepper
    1              pound  asparagus — ends removed,
    cut into thirds diagonally
    2                     red bell peppers — cored and seeded
    4                     scallions (white and green parts) — sliced diagonally
    2        tablespoons  white sesame seeds — toasted
    For the Dressing
    1                cup  vegetable oil
    1/4           cup  good apple cider vinegar
    1/3           cup  soy sauce
    3        tablespoons  dark sesame oil
    1         tablespoon  honey
    2                     garlic cloves — minced
    1           teaspoon  peeled — grated fresh ginger
    1         tablespoon  white sesame seeds — toasted (see Note)
    1/2           cup  smooth peanut butter
    4          teaspoons  kosher salt
    1           teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper

    Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

    Place the chicken breasts on a sheet pan and rub the skin with olive oil. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is just cooked. Set aside until cool enough to handle.

    Remove the meat from the bones, discard the skin, and shred the chicken in large, bite-sized pieces.

    Blanch the asparagus in a pot of boiling salted water for 3 to 5 minutes, until crisp-tender. Plunge into ice water to stop the cooking. Drain. Cut the peppers into strips about the size of the asparagus pieces. Combine the shredded chicken, asparagus, and peppers in a large bowl.

    Whisk together all of the ingredients for the dressing and pour over the chicken and vegetables. Add the scallions and sesame seeds and season to taste. Serve cold or at room temperature.

    *Add the dressing just before serving, store extra salad undressed and seperate, as the chicken tends to get mushy standing in the dressing overnight.

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