Broccoli Salad

Ingredients:

1 medium head broccoli, cut into florets
1 small head cauliflower, cut into florets
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries
5 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled

Dressing:

1/2 cup mayo or Miracle Whip
1/2 cup sugar
2 T white vinegar

Directions:

Mix dressing together in a small bowl. Combine remaining ingredients in large bowl. Toss with dressing to coat thoroughly. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Serve cold.

There are many variations of this recipe online. This is the version that my mom used to make and it is always a hit. It is quite possible this came from the back of the mayo container. It is a great side dish to bring to a potluck.

Advertisements

Broccoli Slaw

Ingredients:
Dressing ingredients:
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon or stone ground mustard
1 teaspoon maple syrup or other sweetener of choice (I used agave)
1 garlic clove, minced
½ teaspoon lemon zest
Sea salt & freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
½ cup cold pressed organic extra virgin olive oil

Salad Ingredients:
1 -16 ounce package of broccoli coleslaw mix (or 1-2 heads broccoli grated with stems & a few shredded carrots)
½ cup fruit sweetened dried cranberries
¼ cup chopped scallions
¼ cup chopped pecans

Directions:
If using fresh broccoli and carrots, shred both, including the broccoli stalk and crowns (I used a food processor but by hand works also). If using the packaged coleslaw mix, add mix, cranberries, and scallions to a large bowl. Mix the dressing ingredients together in a separate bowl with a whisk. Pour over the salad ingredients and toss to coat. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes before serving, or up to a few days.

This was a new recipe off pinterest, and made a great, healthy lunch option or just late-night snack.

Spring Pea Orzo Salad

Ingredients:
3 to 4 lemons
8 ounces uncooked orzo pasta
1/4 cup minced shallot or red onion
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups cooked fresh or frozen peas
1 cup snow peas or sugar snap peas, blanched and chopped
1 cup assorted chopped fresh herbs (such as mint, chives, and parsley)
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Directions:
Grate zest from lemons to equal 2 tsp. Cut lemons in half; squeeze juice from lemons to equal 1/2 cup. Prepare pasta according to package directions. Whisk together shallots, next 4 ingredients, and lemon juice. Toss together pasta and shallot mixture. Toss together pasta, peas, snow peas, next 2 ingredients, and lemon zest just before serving. Add salt, pepper, and additional lemon juice to taste. Cover with plastic wrap, and chill 1 to 48 hours.

I came across the recipe in Southern Living when looking for vegetarian side dishes to serve at Easter. It is definitely a vibrant spring dish. And despite having loads of great dishes at Easter, this one definitely stole the show. I’ve made it a few times since. Because it is served cold, its a great meal to bring for a potluck or for new moms as it can be made the day before. Would also be great for lunches. You can easily add cooked chicken or fish to make this a main dish.

Southwestern Chopped Salad with Cilantro Dressing

Ingredients:
Large head of romaine
15 oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 large orange bell pepper
1 pint cherry tomatoes
2 cups corn (I used frozen, thawed)
5 green onions
Optional: avocado

Dressing:
1 bunch cilantro
1 avocado
juice from 1 lime
1-2 garlic cloves
1/4 cup olive oil
1 1/2 tsp. white wine vinegar
1/8 tsp. salt
Recommended: agave/honey, cumin

Directions:
Make the dressing: puree all ingredients in a food processor/blender until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.
Finely chop romaine, bell pepper, tomatoes, and green onions.
Place all ingredients in a large bowl and stir to combine.
Toss with desired dressing.

I found this recipe on Pinterest and was instantly hungry looking at the beautiful pictures. Check out The Garden Grazer blog to see these wonderful images and a host of other recipes. I also made a few tweeks to the ingredients, mostly because I am lazy (e.g. 1 avocado instead of half because its easier). This salad is super fresh and delicious and uses some of my favorite ingredients: black beans, avocado, and lime.

Lentil Salad, courtesy of My New Roots

I found this recipe online named “The Best Lentil Salad, ever” on a wonderful little cooking blog called My New Roots, and it did not disappoint. You should definitely check out the original blog post as it provides a lot more detail and information. I’m including just the recipe here.

Ingredients:
2 ¼ cups (1 lb.) Du Puy lentils
1 medium red onion, diced
1 cup dried currants (you could also use raisins or other dried fruit)
1/3 cup capers

Vinaigrette:
1/3 cup cold pressed, extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp. maple syrup
1 Tbsp. strong mustard
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
½ tsp ground cardamom
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
¼ tsp. ground cloves
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
¼ tsp. ground cinnamon

Optional add-ins:
Arugula
Walnuts
Goat cheese
Fresh herbs: flat-leaf parsley, cilantro, basil
Sprouts
Crispy seasonal veggies

Directions:
1. Rinse lentils well, drain. Place in a pot and cover with a 3-4 inches of water, bring to a boil, reduce to simmer. Check lentils for doneness after 15 minutes, but they should take about 20 minutes in total. You will know they are cooked if they still retain a slight tooth – al dente! Overcooking the lentils is the death of this dish. Be careful!
2. While the lentils are simmering, make the dressing by placing all ingredients in a jar with a tight fitting lid and shake vigorously to combine.
3. Finely dice red onion – the salad is best if all the ingredients are about the same size. If using raisins, chop them roughly to make them a bit smaller, and do the same with the capers if they are large.
4. When the lentils are cooked, remove from heat, drain and place under cold running water to stop the cooking process. Once cooled slightly but still a little warm, place lentils in a large serving bowl and toss with dressing. Add other onion, capers, and currants. If using other add-ins such as herbs, greens, or cheese, wait until just before serving. Otherwise, this salad can hang out in the fridge for a couple days.

Copyright 2012 My New Roots at mynewroots.blogspot.com

Lunch Ideas! (or 10 ways to use an avocado)

I’ve been looking for some creative lunch ideas to spice up my lunch. I do a lot of leftovers typically, but with a husband who can eat an entire box of cereal in one sitting as a “snack,” leftovers are not always a guarantee. After doing some Pinteresting, here are some creative recipes I’m looking forward to trying. Of course afterward I realized they all have avocado — something I obviously love! Not only do they taste delicious, but they have the “good fat” which is not only healthy but keeps you full at lunch without making you sluggish and weighed down with carbs. So stock up on avocados and try some of these recipes with me!

Tuna or Chicken Stuffed Avocados
Avocado & Cucumber Caprese Salad (have also seen varieties of this recipe with corn)
Spinach, Avocado & Goat Cheese Grilled Cheese
Avocado Egg Salad
Avocado Yogurt Dip (to eat with fresh veggies) or Kale Dip

Of course we’ll still have our standard chicken or tuna sandwiches or leftover chili in the mix, but I’m looking forward to adding some of these into the lunch rotation!

Pasta Salad

Ingredients:
1 box whole wheat penne or rotini
3 stalks celery, chopped
2-3 carrots, chopped
1 pint grape tomatoes
1 6-8 oz container crumbled feta cheese
1 small onion, diced (optional)
salt & pepper
3/4 – 1 c vidalia onion dressing (I usually buy this, but you can make your own here)

Directions:
Cook pasta according to directions. Drain and rinse in cool water and let cool. While pasta is cooking, chop vegetables. Mix cooked pasta, veggies, and feta in large bowl and season with vidalia onion dressing, salt and pepper to taste. I use a lot of dressing as it soaks into the pasta. Can be served immediately, but tastes best after sitting to allow the dressing to absorb.

This is a great recipe for summer BBQs, potlucks, or just as lunches during the summer when cooking a hot meal doesn’t sound appealing.