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.

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.

Cranberry Apple Sweet Potato Hash

Ingredients:
1/2 cup apple cider
8 ounces sweet potatoes, cut into 1/4 inch cubes
1/4 cup dried cranberries, chopped
1 apple
3/4 cup shredded red cabbage
1 tablespoon maple syrup or maple agave syrup blend
2 tablespoons sliced almonds

Directions:
Warm the cider in a skillet over medium heat. Add the sweet potatoes and cover. Sautee for 4 – 5 minutes. If you don’t have a lid for your pan, a baking sheet placed on top works great!

Add the cranberries, apple, and cabbage, cook for 2 minutes. Add the syrup, stir to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Top with the sliced almonds.

I found this recipe on Pinterest and it looked so good I just had to try it. I made it as a Thanksgiving side and it was a hit. Best of all, its healthy! The blog is called Now You’re Cookin’ and is full of healthy recipes.

Thai Spring Rolls

Ingredients:
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 thumb-size piece galangal OR ginger, grated (or 1 tsp dried ginger)
2 green onions, sliced into matchstick pieces
1 red chili, minced, OR 1/2 to 1 tsp. cayenne pepper (omit if you prefer very mild spring rolls)
1/2 cup shredded or finely chopped cabbage
4-6 mushrooms, cut into matchstick pieces
1 c shredded carrots
approx. 2 cups bean sprouts
1/2 cup fresh coriander, roughly chopped (or dried)
1/2 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp. oil, plus more for deep-frying
1 pkg. spring roll wrappers (thawed if frozen)

Directions:
Mix ingredients in bowl, wrap into spring roll wrappers, and fry.

Like the Thai Sweet Potato and Pumpkin Soup recipe, I got this Spring Roll Recipe from Thaifood.about.com – surprisingly good recipes!

Stuffed Mushrooms

Ingredients:
4 large or 6 small portobello mushrooms
3 slices of bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 cups asparagus, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 small red pepper, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 cup chicken stock

Marinade:
2 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs Worcestershire sauce
1 t Dijon mustard
salt & pepper to taste

Directions:
Remove mushroom stems and spoon out the gills. Mix marinade well. Place mushroom caps in large bowl or bag and pour marinade over caps. Allow to soak for 10 minutes.
Place oven rack in center of oven and preheat to 400 degrees.
Fry bacon in large skillet and then cut into pieces. In same skillet, cook asparagus, pepper, and onion over medium heat. Add chicken broth and simmer until broth is absorbed.
Place marinated mushroom caps on baking sheet and fill with vegetable mixture. Bake for 20 minutes.

My mom first made this recipe for me and it was great! It can be served as a meal, or as an appetizer. Healthy (besides the bacon) and delicious, and a unique way to serve portobellos.