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Posts tagged ‘salad’

Zucchini Pesto Lasagna And A Kale Lentil Salad


Here are a quick couple of recipes that I have made that turned out well and I wanted to share them with you. We had 2 days where the temps were under 90 woo hoo!! We are back up almost at 90 again but I have seen the light at the end of the tunnel. I harvested my basil from the garden and made a big jar of pesto, also working on harvesting my herbs and drying them so I have for the winter. The lasagna uses some of the pesto and the zucchini I got at the farmers market. It’s so simple to make and really delicious. I haven’t been eating meat lately, I can’t bring myself to eat it right now. The Kale and lentil salad provides protein from the lentils and cheese and pistachio a very nice substitute and delicious. The lighting was weird on the photo of the lasagna, it was daylight but I guess the natural light wasn’t sufficient, the pan is sitting on a white cloth that looks purple or blue.

Zucchini Pesto Lasagna

Serves 2

1 or 2 large zucchini cut into thin strips approxmately 1/4 inch thick

roasted tomato (you don’t need much it’s only for the bottom of the pan)

2-3 tbs pesto



grated parmigiana or romano cheese

olive oil

Heat oven to 375, brush the zucchini strips with olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and roast until lightly browned, it only took about 20 minutes. If you don’t have roasted tomatoes you can make those at the same time. I used an oval roasting pan and placed some tomato at the bottom, add a layer of zucchini, spread some of the pesto on each zucchini slice, dollop on some ricotta, a little grated or sliced mozzarella and sprinkle with grated cheese. Repeat and top with mozzarella and grated cheese. Bake at 375 for approximately 30 minutes until golden brown and bubbly.

lentil and kale salad

kale and lentil salad

Lentil and kale salad

Serves 2

1 cup dry lentils washed

1 carrot cut into pieces

1 shallot

3 sprigs of thyme

water to cover the lentils

salt and pepper

In skillet sauté the shallot and carrot, add the lentils and water, salt and pepper and cook until lentils are al denté, add more water if you need to during the cooking. Rinse the lentils and set aside.

Assembling the salad

Kale leaves washed (as much as you want)

some crumbled feta (again as much as you want)

handful roasted pistachio chopped

tomato chopped.

Place the kale in a large salad bowl drizzle with olive oil and massage until softened. Add the lentils, tomato pistachio and feta. To dress just whisk a little honey, thyme leaves and white wine vinegar together and pour on the salad. Keeps beautifully even until the next day.

In closing I made another parfait, I love eating them, they are delicious and for me guilt free. This is just Carr’s whole meal biscuit, greek yogurt, peaches and blackberries. Thats it!!



Spring Forward, A Fresh Salad With Creamy Meyer Lemon Dressing And Some Shopping

Spring salad

Spring salad

Although it won’t officially be spring until Friday, March 20th at 6:46 PM, we have taken one giant leap by changing the clocks, moving them forward one hour which gives us an extra hour of daylight, in my opinion having to wake up an hour earlier is cruel and unecessary, leave the clocks be please (editorial opinions are strictly my own).  I have proclaimed that it is Spring in my house today by opening some of my windows to let in some fresh (cold) air and although there is still snow piled up outside, I made a fresh salad in honor of Spring, This salad was born out of necessity, I needed to use watermelon radish, frisee, beets, spring onion and blood orange before they went bad,  threw some garbanzo beans in and had a small wedge of 2 day old sourdough bread that I cut into cubes and made some pan fried croutons.  The dressing is simple, meyer lemon juice, mayonaise, olive oil, mint and basil (both dried), the flavor is creamy and bright and it went so nicely on the salad, you don’t have to use mayonnaise you can use yogurt for a lighter dressing or simply lemon, oil and herbs for an even lighter one. I hope you all enjoy your extra hour of daylight and we will all soon be enjoying lovely Spring weather and beautiful produce.



Salad for one:

handful of frisee

beet cut into bite size pieces

scallions or spring onion

watermelon radish cut into strips

1 blood orange, or orange supremed used half the orange in the salad and squeezed the juice of the other half on top of the salad

garbanzo beans about 1/4 cup


Toasted nuts would also be a great option in this salad

Instead of croutons you could add a whole grain like farro, freekeh, barley or whatever you like.

Toss it all in a bowl (pretty easy right)


Meyer lemon dressing

2 tbs mayonaise

juice of a meyer lemon a (you determine how thick or thin you like your dressing)

drizzle of olive oil

dried mint and basil or whatever herbs you want to use, fresh is best but dried will do nicely.

salt and pepper to taste

Whisk everything together, add the lemon juice little by little until you reach the desiered consistency.



One of my favorite things to do is go to the local Marshall’s houseware department. They have great stuff for the kitchen an home. I could literally spend hours there and never leave empty handed. Today I got some assorted bowls, a great ceramic pitcher and found this pug mug that I couldn’t resist, I needed a new spoon cradle and I fell in love with a vibrant ceramic eggplant spoon cradle. Last month I decided to re furnish, my guest room, I bought new furniture and rugs, today I found some cool accessories, throw pillows, and some really nice baskets,  it’s so much fun to shop.

Pug mug

Pug mug

spoon cradle

spoon cradle

Happy Valentines Valentines Day – Coquille St. Jacques Part 3, The Entree and Wine

Coquille St Jacques

Coquille St Jacques

I don’t know what made me think of this dish, it was one of my favorites years ago. It’s been a very long time since I have had it and have never made it myself.   After searching the internet to find recipes, I decided to make this one from Epicurious, actually I combined several different techniques when I made it. This dish is really very simple to make and is an elegant and delicious meal. It  is a scallop gratin,  and was very popular in the 1950’s but had fallen from popularity and has been replaced by lighter fare. It is often served in the shell of the scallop but if you don’t happen to have the shells a gratin dish works just as well. I serve with a crisp salad of belgian endive, microgreens, mandarin orange segements and toasted pecans.The wine I chose is a  2011 Pouilly Fuisse, fresh and assertive and bold enough to pair nicely with a rich cream sauce.  It’s a lovely dinner for two and no one has to know how simple it is to make.

The Salad:

Belgian Endive

Mandarin Orange segments

pecans toasted and chopped

Micro greens


Good Olive Oil

Champagne Vinegar

Squeeze of fresh Orange Juice

Drizzle of honey

Herbes de provence

dijon mustard

sea salt and pepper

Coquille St. Jacque -Loosely Adapted From Epicurious 

Serves 2

1 cup white wine

1 large shallot chopped

Bouquet Garni (I used parsley, thyme, bay leaf, tarragon)

Pinch of herbes de provence (Optional)

1 lb fresh dry scallops

8 oz mushrooms

4 tbs butter divided

2 tbs flour

1/2 cup heavy cream

salt and pepper to taste

bread crumbs

grated gruyere cheese

1. Saute the shallot in 2 tbs butter, when translucent add the mushroom and continue to saute until soft. Pour in the wine and add the bouquet garni, optional herbes de provence and simmer on medium heat until liquid is reduced by about half.

2. Add the scallops and simmer for 2-4 minutes, careful not to over cook, remove with slotted spoon and set aside. Remove the bouquet garni.

3. Add the remaining 2 tbs of butter to the liquid and whisk in the flour, cook until thichened, pour in the cream and continue cooking until it’s thickened to the consistency of heavy cream . Remove from heat and add the scallops.

4. Fill 6 scallop shells or shallow 6-inch ramekins almost to the top with the scallop mixture. Dust the top lightly with bread crumbs and sprinkle with the grated cheese. (If you’re not ready to serve the scallops, cover them with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

5. Preheat the broiler. Broil the gratin until the mixture bubbles and the cheese melts and turns golden brown.

Belgian Endive, orange, pecan, micro greens

Belgian Endive, orange, pecan, micro greens

Pouilly Fuisse

Pouilly Fuisse

Hearty Kale Salad With Kabocha Squash,Pomegranate Seeds And Toasted Hazelnut And An Award

Kale Salad

Kale Salad

I love healthful food, I really do but my style of cooking isn’t really super healthy. I try, I really do but unfortunately I fall short most of the time. Incorporating raw foods, salads into my diet is challenging sometimes. A friend and I hosted a dinner party the other night and we wanted to do a low carb, healthful meal. I found this recipe on Food52, Gena Hamshaw is vegan and has some amazing, balanced healthful dishes. I took one look at this salad and knew it would be on the menu that evening. What does it contain? Lots of super foods, Kale, pomegranate, hazelnuts and Kabocha squash. The kale is massaged with a little of the dressing to soften, then you toss with the rest of the light lemon dressing. It’s delicious, honestly, really really good. I had everything for the salad except the squash so I subbed sweet potato which I prepared in exactly the same way as you would the squash.

Serves 4-6

  • 1 Large bunch curly kale, stems removed and discarded, torn into bite sized pieces, washed, and spun dry
  • 1 Small kabocha squash (Japanese pumpkin), halved and seeded and cut into 1.5 inch pieces ( I used 1 medium size sweet potato using the same method as described in step 1)
  • 4 tablespoons Olive oil, divided into 1 tbsp and 3 tbsp
  • 3/4 cups Pomegranate seeds
  • 1/2 cup Skinned hazelnuts
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons Lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon Sea salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the squash in 1 tbsp olive oil and season with salt and pepper on a baking sheet. Roast for 30-35 minutes, or until golden, stopping halfway through to stir.
  2. While squash is roasting, place the hazelnuts in a shallow baking dish (or a pie pan) and toast in the oven for 4-6 minutes, or until they are golden. Check them frequently and remove them the moment they start to get brown. Once they’ve cooled a little, chop them roughly and set aside.
  3. Whisk together the remaining olive oil, mustard, lemon, maple syrup, sea salt, and pepper. Pour 3 tbsp over the kale to begin with, and “massage” the kale well with your hands, till it’s coated in the dressing and taking on a soft, almost wilted texture. Add the remaining dressing as needed and according to tastes. Add pomegranate seeds and hazelnuts.
  4. Once the squash has finished cooking and has cooled for 10-15 minutes, add it to the salad and serve.

I am so thankful that Cambios de humor nominated me for the Shine On Award. Thank you so much, I am so honored to have been included in your list of nominee’s. Please visit her blog, you will love the honesty and humor in her posts.  Thank you again!!


Warm Salad With Cherry Tomatoes, Haricot Vert and Pancetta

Cherry Tomatoes, Haricot Vert and Pancetta

This is one of my favorite salads, it incorporates 3 ingredients that I love, green beans, tomatoes and pancetta, it’s easy to put together, the vegetables are sauteed in the dressing so they really absorb all the flavors. It’s wonderful when tomatoes are in season but I have been able to get some really good tomatoes from the grocer so this can be made any time. This salad is served warm or room temperature, you don’t have to worry about anything wilting and the colors are so beautiful. I used heirloom cherry tomatoes for this, be sure to have some bread ready to soak up the juices. You do not have to use pancetta to make this vegetarian, add whatever you like as a substitute, I think mushrooms would be delicious.

Serves 4-6

12 mixed color heirloom cherry tomatoes cut in half

1/2 pound haricot vert cleaned and stem side only removed

1  shallot minced

1  clove garlic minced

1/4 pound pancetta cut into cubes (2 1 inch thick slices)

1 tablespoon salt (to add to water to cook haricot vert)

Blanch the haricot vert in a large pot of salted water. Bring water to a boil add at least a tablespoon of salt and add the beans, cook for 5 minutes. While beans are cooking prepare an ice bath you want to add the beans to the ice bath to shock them, remove beans from boiling water and place directly into ice water, this will stop the cooking process and they will retain that beautiful green color. Let your beans get cold then remove to paper towels lay them out in a single layer and pat dry.

Cut your tomatoes in half, mince the shallot and garlic and chop the panceltta into small cube size pieces.

Making the salad:

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons white wine vinegar

salt and pepper to taste

Heat skillet with the 2 tbs of olive oil, add the shallot cook until just starting to soften, add the garlic and continue cooking for another minute. Remove from pan and set aside. In the same pan add the pancetta and brown, add the shallot and garlic back into the pan and add the 2 tbs of vinegar. Add the cherry tomatoes and cook just until the tomatoes start to soften and release some of their juices. Now add the haricot vert stir together and let cook for 3-5 more minutes. Adjust seasoning. I found I didn’t need additional salt for my taste, but I did add pepper. Serve and enjoy.

Featured Recipe – Mediterranean Poppers

Photo by Lapadia

I wanted to feature another delicious, quick and easy salad for the featured recipe this week. This has Mediterranean flavors and comes in its own little edible cup. Crisp cucumber, olives, tomatoes, feta and herbs dressed simply with olive oil and placed in crisped wonton wrappers is the perfect little salad bite. This recipe comes from Linda of Lapadia’s Kitchen. She is a fantastic multi talented cook. Visit her website and you will find recipes for bread (her pita is to die for), sweets (her pie crust is amazing) and some Italian favorites like Bracciole you can also find her recipes on Food52.  Linda’s recipe for Himalayan Blackberry Pie will be featured in the second food 52 cookbook coming out October 2012. Give these poppers a try, perfect party fare, I can guarantee you won’t be able to eat just one! I like mine with a little fresh lemon squeezed on top!

FILLING: ingredients make 12 to 15 poppers

  • 2 Persian cucumbers or pickling size, sliced – 1 cup (give or take)
  • 12 Cherry tomatoes
  • 12 Kalamata olives
  • 12 Feta cheese cubes – a little smaller than the olive
  • Olive oil – a good extra virgin
  • Herbes De Provence (I prefer it to oregano)
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • Mini tart pan
  • 15 Wonton Wrappers
  1. Combine 3 tablespoons olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon Herbes de Provence and fresh ground pepper. Let the ingredients sit and infuse, give it a stir now and then.
  2. Spray the wonton wrappers with a buttery spray (such as Pam) on both sides; line the mini tart pan with them pressing lightly into the middle to form a cup.
  3. Bake at 350° until the edges are crispy and brown, about 10-12 minutes.
  4. Let cool – for a make ahead see the note below.
  5. Cut the filling ingredients into at least – thirds; toss with drizzles of the olive oil mixture and let sit in the refrigerator until ready to assemble.
  6. About an hour before serving add filling to each wonton cup.
  7. Serve.

NOTE: make it ahead

  • Prepare to the end of step 4 (up to 2 days ahead), store in an airtight container.
  • Next day, continue with step 5 up to three hours ahead.

Featured Recipe- Kale and Apple Salad

For this weeks Featured Recipe I wanted a fresh and delicious salad. We all need our fresh vegetables and fruits every day and I am always searching for a tasty recipe. I love salads and my new best friend is Kale, it’s packed full of vital nutrients and whether you eat it cooked or raw your body will thank you for it. This salad is a meal in itself, think about it, kale, apples, cabbage,fennel, wild rice a delicious citrusy dressing, your taste buds will do the dance of joy. I love this salad on it’s own, but it can accompany a protein also, there are so many different things you can add to this if you want, some grilled chicken or tofu would be fantastic. I am making this salad again with some Himalayan Red Rice instead of wild rice, quinoa would also be a wonderful addition. Try it in pita bread and take it to work or school.  The possibilities are endless. Check out Hannah’s beautiful blog Blue Kale Road, its packed full of healthful delicious recipes that are family friendly and in my opinion are a celebration of fresh, natural foods.

Photo by Blue Kale Road

Kale and Apple Salad
Inspired by PCC’s Emerald City Salad
Serves 4-6

1/4 – 1/2 cup lemon juice (depending upon taste and amount of kale)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 large crisp apple, diced (my favorite variety is honeycrisp)
3/4 cup fennel, thinly sliced and chopped
1 cup red cabbage, chopped
1/2 cup parsley, chopped
1 bunch organic kale (lacinato or curly green – I like to use a combination of both), ribs removed and finely chopped
1 cup cooked wild rice

Whisk 1/2 cup lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and salt in a large bowl. Add remaining ingredients to the bowl and toss (use your hands – it’s fun and will distribute the dressing more evenly). Taste for additional lemon juice, salt or pepper and add as desired.

The salad can be made a couple of hours ahead and chilled.