Archive for the ‘Salads’ category

Passover Recipes

April 8, 2010

Sorry, no photos and long delays between blog posts!

Here are some recipes from a very fun first night of Passover at my house.

Danielle’s Delightful Salad (she reports “No quantities, sorry.  That’s the way I roll!)

spinach leaves
baby peppers, yellow and red and orange
grated asiago cheese
grated carrots

fresh squeezed lemon juice
olive oil
red wine vinegar
sea salt
black pepper

Rachel’s Sweet Potatoes & Yams

Sliced sweet potatoes and yams with olive oil, salt, pepper and any other seasoning you want.  Bake at 425 degrees for 20-25 minutes. Simple!

I’ll get the spinach matzah lasagne and gefilte fish recipes up here soon!


Vietnamese Bun – Rice Vermicelli Salad Bowl

January 23, 2010

In preparation for my friend and co-teacher Karen to come over for dinner after work one evening, I asked her about her taste preferences, banned foods, etc.  She mentioned that she likes the spice of Asian food.  I hadn’t cooked Asian food for awhile, so I decided on my favorite Vietnamese dish:  rice vermicelli salad bowl, or Bun.

Rice Vermicelli Salad Bowl – Bun with Lemongrass Chicken (or Tofu)

For 4 bowls:

1 package bun – rice sticks/rice vermicelli, cook according to directions.  (I find that boiling works better than soaking for most dried rice products.)
2 carrots, julienne cut (okay, now I want a mandoline)
2 cucumbers, julienne cut
2 cups lettuce, gently sliced to make ribbons
Lemongrass Chicken (below)
Nuoc Cham vinaigrette dressing (below)
to garnish:  lime wedges, basil, mint, and Sriracha/Rooster Sauce

My recipes came from a great and highly recommended book:  Vietnamese Home Cooking for Everyone.  Lots of photos and ingredient information.

Lemongrass Chicken (Could easily be adapted for tofu)
10 oz. chicken meat, cut into bite-sized pieces
2 T. cornstarch
1 T. vegetable oil
2 t. salt
Cooking Sauce:
2 T. chopped lemongrass
1 T. vietnamese soy sauce or teriyaki sauce (I did half reg. soy/ half teriyaki)
1/2 T. each fish sauce and sugar
1 t. chili flakes (I used 1/2 t. with the idea of spicing it up later w/Rooster Sauce to taste)
1 t. chopped garlic
2 dried chili peppers (I left these out to allow custom spicing)

1/2 red onion, diced
16-20 Thai Basil leaves
1/4 c. coconut juice (I flat out forgot to add this)

Sprinkle chicken with salt and cornstarch.  Combine cooking sauce ingredients in a small bowl.
Heat oil in wok or other pan and saute chicken over medium high heat until lightly browned.
Add cooking sauce.  Cook and stir for a minute.
Add onion, basil and (if you remember unlike me) coconut juice.  Cook about 1 minute.

Nuoc Cham Dipping Sauce
1 c. boiling water
1/2 c. fish sauce
1/2 c. sugar
2 T. lime juice (juice of 1 lime – microwave for 10-15 sec. first for max. juiciness – my Aunt Jane’s trick)
1/2 T. peeled leek in vinegar (I skipped this)
1 t. chili paste
1 carrot, shredded

Nuoc Cham Vinaigrette Dressing
1 c. Nuoc Cham dipping sauce
1/4 c. Japanese rice vinegar
1 T. lime juice
1 T. vegetable oil
2 cloves garlic, sliced

Simple Spinach, Pear & Parmesan Salad

January 17, 2010

I can see a category emerging:  Rehearsal Foods.  This evening, our “Koffee House Players” group had a little dinner after a rehearsal for a parody skit for our synagogue’s Koffee House/Open Mike night.  The plan was soup & pizza, with desserts and/or salads brought by others.  I put together this salad and was asked for the vinaigrette recipe.  Always a sweet compliment!  I’m glad I had photographed the salad and written down the dressing recipe.

Simple Spinach, Pear & Parmesan Salad

Approx. 8 oz baby spinach leaves (about 1/2 of the container of organic stuff from my beloved Costco)
1 pear, cut into 1 1/2″ slices
Approx. 1 oz. parmesan cheese, shaved (as much as possible with a cheap cheese slicer)
Freshly ground black pepper

2 t. lemon juice
1 t. white wine vinegar
1 t. dijon mustard
1 t. agave nectar (I think honey or sugar would work fine)
1 t. salt
1/4 c. olive oil – the more olive-y tasting, the better.  I used the California Estate stuff from Trader Joe’s.  I’m almost out and am contemplating my next pilgrimage to Vegas – my closest Trader Joe’s – 6 hours away.  What I will do for good, cheap wine and good, cheap olive oil…

Whisk the lemon juice, vinegar, mustard, agave nectar, and salt together.  Drizzle olive oil while whisking.

“Massaged” Kale Salad: How I’m sure to get my dark green leafys.

January 3, 2010

Mmm…kale.  It’s packed with nutrition and is useful for way more than salad bar garnishes.  My favorite way to eat it is in a salad-like manner, with a little bit of “cooking” to soften the leaves.

“Massaged” Kale Salad

1 bunch kale of any sort
2 teaspoons-1 Tablespoon lemon juice
2 T. olive oil
1/2 t. salt

Tear, wash, and dry the kale.  Place in a medium-sized bowl.  Whist the lemon juice, olive oil & salt together in a small bowl and pour over the kale.  Massage the dressing into the kale.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.  Keeps well for 3-4 days.

Chicken Salad / Navy Bean Soup

December 23, 2009

Yesterday, I remembered I had cooked chicken breast in the fridge that was still good.  So, Chicken Salad it was.  I’ll share two ways to do this.

Basic Curry Chicken Salad

2 cooked chicken breasts or the equivalent amount of meat – cut into cubes
1-2 rib(s) celery finely chopped
2-3 T. minced red onion
1/4 c. mayonnaise
1 T. lemon juice
zest of 1/2 orange
juice of 1/2 orange
1-2 t. curry powder
1/2-1 t. salt
Black pepper to taste
(optional:  about 10 grapes, cut in half)

Whisk together: mayonnaise, lemon juice, orange juice, orange zest, curry powder, salt & pepper.
Add chicken, celery, onion, (and grapes).

Chicken Curry Salad From The Pantry
1 Costco can of chicken breast
1 can mandarin oranges in juice, drained
make dressing above – about 2/3 the amount – do not add grapes.  Add some unsweetened flaked coconut if you’ve got some.

I also remembered that I made a simple navy bean soup for a party last week.  This made a full pot of soup that fed about 10 people.

Navy Bean Soup

1 lb. navy beans, rinsed and picked over to remove non-beans and other scary looking pieces
Lots of water

2 medium onions, chopped
2 T. olive oil
1 T. canola margarine or unsalted butter
4 carrots, peeled and sliced (I find that peeling them prevents souring later)
5 celery ribs, chopped
1 1/2 t. thyme
1 1/2 t. marjoram
2 t. salt
1 t. black pepper
4-5 cups vegetable stock

Soak the beans overnight.  Saute onions in olive oil & margarine or butter until transluscent.  Add thyme, marjoram, salt & pepper and saute another minute.

Add beans, carrots, celery, and onion mixture  to a slow cooker.  Add vegetable stock.  Cook 8 hours on low.  Ideally, refrigerate the soup a day ahead of serving.  Something really good happens to the flavors in that day.