Tag Archives: salad

Chard & Mango Salad (or, “Chard Day’s Night”)

In my pantry today:

  • 1.5 c kaleidoscope chard, chopped
  • 1 c spinach, chopped
  • 1/3 c parsley, minced
  • 1/3 c mango, diced
  • 1/2 c walnuts, toasted
  • 1/3 c sweet onion, diced
  • 1/2 c feta cheese, crumbled or whatever
  • 1/3 c-ish vinaigrette of choice

chardmangosaladChop, mince, dice and toast! Once the prep is out of your way, these are all handy-licious things to grab out of the fridge and throw together. I might have overdone it on those walnuts, but who doesn’t love their healthy Omegas?

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Roasted New Potato Salad with Lentils and Feta

In my pantry today:

  • 3 c baby spinach
  • 4 new potatoes
  • 1/2 c lentils, cooked
  • 1/2 c feta cheese
  • 1 small tomato
  • 2 tbsp sweet onion, minced
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • dash salt
  • house vinaigrette du jour*

P1100487There was fresh spinach. There were potatoes. There were lentils in the refrigerator. With spring in what little prime it gets in South Carolina I didn’t want a hot meal, but it is because summer still isn’t here that I’m not sold on salads yet this year as a meal. What might draw that bridge o’er troubled waters? If you said “potatoes,” then you’re damn right I’m 1/2 Irish.

Wash, halve then toss your potatoes in olive oil, garlic, turmeric and salt. Put cut-side down on a pan and bake in a 400° oven for 40m. Let them cool for 5-10m out of the oven while you prepare a bed of spinach, onion and tomato. Top that with the halved, roasted potatoes… then top that with (cooked, drained, cooled) lentils and feta cheese.

I used some of our house vinaigrette du jour* on it — that’s just 1/4 what was left of our Good Seasons® red wine/olive oil dressing, more olive oil/red wine vinegar, some garlic powder, turmeric and asafoetida (lentils would be afoot). As far as salads go, this one gets 5 spoons both on the flavor and fullness front.

Ramen Salad Soup ft. Hunnộy Chicken

ramensaladsoup

In my pantry today:

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • marinade (below)
  • soup (below)
  • 1 handful of ramen noodles
  • 1 c kale
  • 1/3 c shredded cabbage
  • 1/3 c shredded carrot
  • 3 drops sesame oil
  • 2 spritzes olive oil cooking spray
  • some water

Hunnộy Marinade:

  • 1/4 c soy sauce
  • 1/3 c red wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1/4 tsp red hot chili powder
ramen

I am mindful that this recipe mixes some ingredients and methodologies common to very separate Asian countries.

Marinate your uncut (other than extraneous fat trimming — go to town with that part while remaining true to your own taste for extraneous fat) breasts in the above mixture in a sealed plastic bag or tupperware container and let it soak overnight, or all day or any arbitrary set of several consecutive hours you like. It’ll help things along tomorrow (or later) if you go ahead and prep the other stuff, too. Nearly mince your kale and massage a drop or two of sesame oil into it; let that sit untouched for no less than fifteen minutes, and no more than a couple days (kale is hearty). Slice a thin round or two from a split cabbage* and grate some carrots; put in a baggie and into the fridge. And, really, making the broth would cut down the chicken/noodle timing issue so go ahead and do that (at least a little in) advance of the other stuff.

Soup:

  • 3 14.5 oz cans chicken broth
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 drops sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp red hot chili powder

I mean, you don’t have to do all of this the day before (although the meat would most benefit). Whenever you do make the soup, season but don’t bring it to a full boil until it’s time to boil the noodles.

When it’s time to cook the chicken, preheat a pan to M/MH. When hot, spray with olive oil cooking spray and slide a shaken wedge of animal into the pan. Spoon a little of the marinade over each. Let cook (slide it around so it doesn’t stick) on that side for 2-5 minutes or until chicken shows a white-to-pink gradient when viewed from the side, flip and let the other side cook in the same fashion. Add little drops of water/marinade respectively to keep caramelization or sticking to happen. After gradient shows same range on this side, drop 1/4 c water into the pan, cover it and reduce heat to ML for 10 minutes. Now is the time to start your noodles: bring the soup to a low boil then split the ramen in half before throwing into the pot so that they fit into said pot; stir. Return to chicken (assuming the right amount of time has passed) and slice each breast as thinly as possible. Put slices back into pan and coat with the thick marinade leavings. When noodles are done, don’t drain but divide the pot contents between two large bowls. Layer on kale, cabbage, chicken and carrots. While this did end up being a little more work than for which I’ve trained myself, it delivered spicy cold weather deliciousness at 5 spoons.

 

 

cabbagepeas*All that cabbage I made the other day was divided in half, and respectively: frozen and with peas over Basmati rice at 4 spoons (that cabbage is GOOD after sitting in the fridge a day). The rest of this same head cabbage is chilling in freezer purgatory, and a smidge bit of it still lives in a tiny plastic home in the fridge. Cabbage: one if the cheapest vegetables may also be its heartiest.

Relatively Well-Adjusted Salad

In my pantry today:

  • 2 small heads “artisan lettuce”
  • 1 large slicing tomato
  • 1/2 small onion
  • 2/3 c feta cheese
  • 6 small red potatoes
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1/4 c red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp sesame oil
  • 1.5 tsp blackberry preserves
  • 1/2 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp Greek seasoning

This will be the kind of pretty damn shame that comes with the camera disconnect — how aesthetically pleasing I could make a photo of a salad! The cacophony of colors and textures! And a salad with potatoes, now! I mean, that is both delicious and visually appealing… just take my word. Or click here for another happy salad with potatoes I done diddly made.

Scrub and poke the taters and rub each with olive oil and salt. Before individually wrapping each in foil, throw in a sliver or three of fresh garlic. Bake at 300° for too long until they’re soft to the fork. Split each open and arrange on lettuce, tomatoes and onion. Top with the above sweet sesame vinaigrette and feta cheese, then prepare yourself for a salad without a tutu on. 5 spoons!

 

 

WaaahTons (or, “When in Doubt, Fry it”)

In my pantry today:

  • 20ish wonton wrappers
  • 1 c ground turkey
  • 1 c leftover asian slaw that never got written about
  • 1/2 c shredded jack/cheddar mix
  • 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp minced red onion
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric

Because my partner works odd hours, timing a meal can prove difficult. Wontons do not tolerate this — or at least I have not found the magical process. Today will only be my third time trying, and this time I have vowed to make good on transparency. I have some minor motor skill problems, so delicate tasks like “removing individual wrapper from stack of wrappers” and “folding wrapper properly around filling” generally annoy the balls outta me because I do them poorly. But wontons are a thing now, and I must conquer their tiny bodies
with impunity.

Ok, so she’ll be home from work for the day around 3. The filling is made and chilling in a bowl. Lo, these wontons will also need a dipping sauce!
  • 1/2 c Grandma’s fig jam
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp garlic ginger paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp hot red chili powder

The second wonton attempt ended in soggy despair, but the slaw was pretty tasty. It was saved in the fridge, hopefully, for this day.

And, hell, I’d written up the slaw-gredients days ago:

  • 2/3 head red cabbage, diced
  • 2 c kale, diced and marinated in sesame oil
  • 1/2 c edamame, shelled
  • 1/2 c sliced leek greens
  • 1/2 c crumbled ramen noodles
  • 1/3 c cashew pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce

That was a labor of delicious love to which I should’ve here previously copped. The slaw would’ve gotten 4 spoons and these wontons… these wontons right here? And their sauce? 5 spoons and proud of it!

Happy Salad (or, “Salad But With Bacon, Potatoes, a Jalapeno and Homemade Dressing.”)

In my pantry today:

  • 6 slices bacon
  • 3 small yellow potatoes
  • 1 c kale, chopped and stems removed
  • 2 c baby red lettuce, chopped
  • 1 tbsp leek, sliced
  • 6-8 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 small jalapeno
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 4 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 c red wine vinegar
  • 1.5 tsp Greek seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp hot red chili powder

Wow, was my mind all over a delicious map tonight. Start out by massaging 1/2 tsp olive oil into your kale and setting it back in the fridge. Wash, stab a little, wrap in paper towels and microwave potatoes for three minutes (ignore the beep of the microwave for a while). Halve that jalapeno you picked from the generous container plant outside, remove the seeds and inner fuzz. Set halve the seeds aside, then flatten and delicately julienne the remaining pepper flesh.

Take a breath, start a new paragraph. Keep truckin.

Smash and mince your garlic. Put it and the reserved jalapeno seeds in 1/4 c olive oil in a mini saucepan on the stove. Let that cook slowly on ML until the garlic juuuuuust begins showing golden edges. Set aside for a few minutes.

Pan fry your bacon to your preferred consistency (I like mine dead as dead can be). Slice potatoes into large pieces and place in a baking dish with 1 tbsp bacon drippings spread in its bottom. Drizzle a little more on top, then sprinkle some Greek seasoning and red hot chili powder on. Place in 350° oven for 10-20 m, then:

[innnnnnnnnnnnhaaaaaaaaaaaaale]

Mix lettuce and kale and place in the bottom of a salad bowl. Rim the greens with spicy bacon-roasted potatoes. Top with leeks, tomatoes and julienned jalapeno… oh, and big-ass chunks of bacon. Serve with the garlapeno vinaigrette you just created with the sauteed garlic/seeds, 1/3 c red wine vinegar and 1/2 tsp Greek seasoning. Be happy — very happy — tonight with a salad for dinner. 5 spoons!

 

 

100th Recipe: Ribs! (or, “Suck it, Rice and Sauce Meals!”)

In my pantry today:

  • 2.22 lbs country-style pork ribs
  • 16 oz Kraft® Honey Hickory Smoke BBQ sauce
  • 1/3 c brown mustard
  • 1 tbsp garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp hot red chili powder
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

It is gorgeous outside today and I had to rescind an invitation for a swimming pool and Dad’s ribs this morning. Within an hour or two, I began yearning for the sloppy southern goodness that can come only from covering specific parts of another animal in delicious sauce. It seems fitting, really, to have something decadent and celebratory for post #100; I’m doing pretty well living meatlessly for a girl who a year ago ate, Atkins-stlye, only meat — in fact, I feel so much better for making this switch that my body thanks me by behaving less like a spoiled toddler. I certainly don’t label myself a vegetarian: every now and then I still eat a sausage biscuit or fried chicken. I just want to be up front about all this to any vegetarian readers — when I cook, I try to do it with no animal products. On a budget that’s not always possible, but on a budget it’s terribly helpful to consume less meat.

Back to the ribs.

If these were to be ready for dinner, there was no time to make a completely from-scratch marinade. I used what was available to me and hoped for the best. They went into and were massaged by the above conglomeration of ingredients, were refrigerated for an hour then baked at 225° for 4 hours. A spatula, not a fork, will be needed to remove each of these in one piece… even then, a fat lotta good luck to you! Ribs were served alongside a salad which included these items from the pantry:

  • 1 head summercrisp lettuce
  • 1 large Red Russian kale leaf, torn and marinated in olive oil
  • 1 medium tomato
  • 2 tbsp diced Vidalia onion
  • 1 tbsp salt roasted beets
  • 1 tsp Parmesan cheese
  • homemade balsamic/red wine vinaigrette

A resounding 5 spoons is warranted for this foray into… Fleshtown? Meatsboro? Deliciousville. (Totally Deliciousville.)

Chicken and Buckwheat and Salad, Oh My!

In my pantry today:

  • 2 c Colonel Cat’s Crock Pot Chicken* pulled meat
  • 2 c Colonel Cat’s Crock Pot Chicken* stock
  • 1 c buckwheat Kasha
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tsp hot red chili powder
  • 3 c leftover salad mix
  • 1 shaved carrot
  • 2 tbsp fresh blueberries
  • 1 tbsp golden raisins
  • 2 tbsp feta cheese
  • 4 tsp olive oil
  • 4 tsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Because I am a little overwhelmed with fatigue right now, yesterday my better half set the thawed whole fryer from the fridge to be ready for me to contend with on a level today which far surpasses that of general convenience foods. I separated the broth from the carcass and the meat from the bones. Then I fed the dogs a little of the super soggy crock pot chicken skin before tossing the bones. The chicken came out so tender and fragrant; it was a natural complement to whatever approached to shake its hands.

*Colonel Cat’s Crock Pot Chicken:

  • 1 2lb whole naked fryer
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2. tsp salt
  • 6 c water

Did someone call the colonel?

I picked up a box of Kasha at the store yesterday — I admit to never having heard of it before, though it appeared to be an answer to my consistent “make sure there’s protein without meat” dilemma. I took a chance and was rewarded handsomely. It cooks up like a cross between pearl couscous and steel cut oats, and because I substituted stock for water it came out with a fragrance and flavor that crooked a finger for the chicken to come hither. Toss the pulled meat, 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp red hot chili powder with the Kasha. Set aside.

Ring the inside of a large bowl with salad greens and top with raisins, blueberries and carrots. Scoop a dollop of the chicken and Kasha combo into the middle then top the bowl with feta cheese. Seal the deal with a little olive oil, lemon juice and balsamic vinegar. This was a surprisingly wonderful combination — I did not expect to like buckwheat at all, but that may have been largely due to the fact that I assumed Eddie Murphy would not be as delicious as he may have once been. Now, I know the true face of buckwheat. 5 stars!

Freshmaker for Two (or, “Not Every Salad Deserves a Post, but…”)

In my pantry today:

  • 3 c chopped fresh spinach
  • 2 c chopped fresh arugula
  • 1 c “zesty mix” microgreens
  • 1 sliced roma tomato
  • 1/2 sliced avocado
  • 2 tbsp Vidalia onion
  • 1 tbsp golden raisins
  • 2 tbsp dried cherries
  • 2 tbsp chopped walnuts
  • 1 tbsp feta cheese
  • 1/4 c homemade vinaigrette

Summer is near-upon us. I make a lot of salads in the summer. Now I will need to make a lot of salads with consciously varied creative interest for any and all who might Stumbleupon my blog. It seems like it would be hard to not get tired of salads, no? Right now I’ve got the CSA on my side with different weekly deliveries of glorious salad (and other!) potential. I am going to use it to my advantage tonight; it’s been a long day wherein I had to pay someone to tell me that I drank too much coffee. Instead of spending time in my kitchen I sat in waiting rooms without coffee. To be told that I drank too much coffee.

It’s true, it’s true; I just can’t believe I had to give what I saved yesterday on not needing new brakes instead to an Urgent Care. Who’s got two thumbs, one stomach fire and no health insurance? This dumb girl.

Seeing as how my afternoon was wasted, both in time and amount of coffee consumed, dinner had to be something easy… and salads, well, are pretty handy. If you do them right. If you don’t, you’ll be hungry an hour later and wishing you’d just ordered Chinese for the same payoff. The common misconception about salads is that they cannot be made a meal unless some manner of hot, delicious animal adorns their top. Not true. Just make sure you’re including ingredients that make up for the protein you might otherwise lack, and, hey guess what — vegetables have protein! There’ll be small quantities in the spinach and microgreens, a little more in the avocado and a good deal more in the feta and walnuts. There will be enough, via the combination of everything above, to make a hearty salad that rivals anything a “meat and three sides” plate could deliver. I always feel better about the choice I’d made for dinner after a good salad, and tonight’s was beyond the need for any exception: 4 spoons!