April 22, 2009

Salads
Here a few Salad recipes... summer is around the corner so there will be plenty occasions to grab a bowl and heat up the BBQ and invite a few friends.... Enjoy Alissa


Pasta Salad with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

1/2 pound fusilli (spirals) pasta
Kosher salt
Olive oil
1 pound ripe tomatoes medium-diced
3/4 cup good black olives such as kalamata pitted and diced
1 pound fresh mozzarella medium-diced
6 sun-dried tomatoes in oil drained and chopped

FOR THE DRESSING
5 sun-dried tomatoes in oil drained
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
6 tablespoons good olive oil
1 garlic clove diced
1 teaspoon capers drained
2 teaspoons kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup basil leaves julienned

Directions: Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water with a splash of oil to keep it from sticking together. Boil for 12 minutes, or according to the directions on the package. Drain well and allow to cool. Place the pasta in a bowl and add the tomatoes, olives, mozzarella, and chopped sun-dried tomatoes. For the dressing, combine the sun-dried tomatoes, vinegar, olive oil, garlic, capers, salt, and pepper in a food processor until almost smooth. Pour the dressing over the pasta, sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese and basil, and toss well.
Yield: serves 6

Notes: This salad sits well, so you can make it early in the day. Add the Parmesan and basil just before serving.



Pearl Couscous with Olives and Roasted Tomatoes

Gourmet Magazine, September 2002

For roasted tomatoes and dressing
2 pt red grape or cherry tomatoes (1 1/2 lb)
3 large garlic cloves left unpeeled
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup warm water
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
For couscous
2 3/4 cups chicken broth
2 1/4 cups pearl (Israeli) couscous
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup Kalamata or other brine-cured black olives pitted and chopped
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

Directions: Roast tomatoes and make dressing: Preheat oven to 250°F. Halve tomatoes through stem ends and arrange, cut sides up, in 1 layer in a large shallow (1-inch-deep) baking pan. Add garlic to pan and roast in middle of oven until tomatoes are slightly shriveled around edges, about 1 hour. Cool in pan on a rack 30 minutes. Peel garlic and purée with oil, water, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and 1/2 cup roasted tomatoes in a blender until dressing is very smooth.

Make couscous: Bring broth to a boil in a 3-quart heavy saucepan and stir in couscous, then simmer, uncovered, 6 minutes. Cover pan and remove from heat. Let stand 10 minutes. Spread couscous in 1 layer on a baking sheet and cool 15 minutes. Transfer couscous to a bowl and stir in remaining ingredients, dressing, roasted tomatoes, and salt and pepper to taste.

Yield: serves 6
Note: Roasted tomatoes, dressing, and couscous can be made 1 day ahead and kept separately, covered and chilled. Bring to room temperature before proceeding.


Lemony Potato Salad

6 small potatoes in their skins (or red potatos)
2 stalks of celery with leaves, diced and leaves roughly chopped (or chopped sugar snap peas)
1 large lemon, juiced and zested
1/4 c olive oil
1 t honey
1 t dijon mustard
1 small bunch of basil, torn (or chopped in a chiffonade)
1 T capers
pepper and sea salt

1. Boil potatoes whole in their skins until done. Cool slightly and cut into large cubes. Place in bowl. Add chopped celery.
2. Mix together lemon juice, olive oil, honey and dijon into a dressing and pour over potatoes.
3. Tear basil leaves over top of salad. Add capers, lemon zest, freshly ground pepper and rock salt. Mix. Cool in fridge until ready to serve.



Family Potato Salad

This is a family recipe and i guess it goes back a few generations.... it is my favorit... it is very creamy but not heavy and has just the perfect combination of tart and sweet flavor....

you could add onions to this salad - but in this family many members do not like the taste of onions in the salad

3-4 potatoes cooked cut in slices cooked in broth
1 apple cored, peeled and cut into cubes
1-2 hard boiled eggs chopped
3 german pickles chopped
2 tbsp cup chopped flat parsley
2 tbsp cup chopped chives
4 tbsp pickle juice
1/2 cup mayonnaise (the real stuff not salad dressing!)
2 tsp prepared mustard
salt and pepper

Put potatoes in a large bowl, add juice of pickles, add pickles, apple and hard boiled eggsin a seperate small bowl mix the mayonnaise with mustard, add salt and pepper. pour over salad and mix well. taste add more spices if you like and chill.


Heirloom Tomato and Avocado Salad

If heirloom tomatoes are not available, good old-fashioned beefsteak tomatoes are just as juicy and delicious. The combination of sweet tomatoes and tangy cheese creates a pleasant treat.

Serving: 6

3 to 4 heirloom tomatoes (choose different colors and sizes)
2 avocados
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup aged Gouda cheese, sliced with a vegetable peeler into thin strips

Slice the tomatoes and the avocados into 1/3-inch slices. Place on a platter or six individual plates.
In a small bowl combine the olive oil and the lemon juice and drizzle over the tomatoes and avocados. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the cheese.

Source: Rori Trovato




Strawberry Spinach Salad

This spinach salad recipe is from Patt, Alberta Canada... i found it on her blog. I had a similar salad at my aunts house she added a few caramelized pecans and almond slivers on top... wonderful... I have made this many times and people always want the recipe..... so here you are... and thank you Pat for this recipe that comes closets to my aunts...


1/3 cup white sugar
1/2 cup salad oil
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 tbsp sesame seeds
2 tbsp poppy seeds
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce
2 tsp finely minced onion (or onion flakes)
Fresh spinach leaves
Fresh strawberries

Combine first 8 ingredients 1 hour in advance and shake well. Tear spinach leaves into bite size pieces. Slice strawberries lengthwise. Add salad dressing just before serving and toss well. The dressing is a large recipe. We used ½ of this for a salad that served 8 nicely. Don't be stingy with the strawberries. About 1 basket for an 8 serving salad.
Substitute any leafy lettuce for the spinach as desired. (Romaine, Mixed Spring Greens etc.)



Persian Rice Salad

2 cups cold cooked long-grain brown rice (try brown jasmine or brown basmati rice)
1 Tablespoon olive oil
3 Tablespoons lemon juice (maybe less, try it and see)
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon. dill weed, by taste
1/2 teaspoon salt,
6 thin scallions, sliced thin
1/3 cup toasted cashew pieces
1/3 cup medium dates, cut up

Dress rice with combined olive oil, lemon juice, and dill weed. Add salt to taste. Combine with scallions, cashew pieces, and dates and serve immediately. (If you can't serve right away, set the cashews aside and add them just beforehand.)

Makes 4 servings (2 1/2 cups)

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