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Entries in Salad (5)


Summer salad with black eyed peas

I'm always looking for fun vegetarian meals to eat in the summer. In the winter we gobble up all kinds of vegetarian soups, stews, and casseroles, but that's not really summery, is it? So I did a few searches and found a few options, melded some, alterred others, and now I have a whole file of summer style veggie entrees. It looks like salad is the way to go! That makes sense to me, and the less time I can spend over a hot stove, or with the oven heating my already warm house, the better.

This recipe is a combo from several others scattered around the web. Some changes I'd make: next time I'd like to try the sun dried tomatoes not packed in oil, or maybe even fresh ones.

Summer Salad with black eyed peas

Serves 8-10

  ● 2 cups dry black-eyed peas (or about 2 cans)
  ● feta cheese, about 1 cup, crumbled
  ● 1 jar of sun-dried tomatoes in oil, about 8 ounces
  ● 1 cup Kalamata olives
  ● 2 green onions, chopped
  ● 1 garlic clove, minced
  ● 1 large bunch of spinach, washed, dried, and torn
  ● 1 lemon, both zest and juice


1. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the black-eyed peas and turn heat down to below a simmer. Cook uncovered until done, about 45 minutes. When done, pour into a colander and  wash with cold water to stop the cooking and cool.

2 In a large bowl combine spinach, feta, olives, onion, tomatoes, lemon zest, and garlic, and cooled peas. Toss to mix well. Squeeze lemon over top, to taste, right before serving.


Avocado and watercress salad

Watercress is supposed to be a very nutritious and healthy green, but it's not very good on its own. I set out to find a recipe for this bitter little green and was delighted to find this one, which is apparently a take on a famous dressing from New York restaurant called Natori. The soy sauce and apple were an unusually good pairing and completely obscured the bitterness of the greens.

Avocado and Watercress Salad

  ● 1/4 cup rice vinegar (not seasoned)
  ● 1 tbsp. grated sweet onion such as Vidalia or Walla Walla (use large holes of a box grater)
  ● 1/4 cup finely grated peeled Gala apple (use small holes of box grater)
  ● 4 tsp. soy sauce
  ● 3 tbsp. vegetable oil
  ● 6 cups watercress (thin stems and leaves only; from 1 large bunch)
  ● 1 firm but ripe avocado

Stir together vinegar, onion, apple, soy sauce, and sugar until sugar has dissolved, then stir in oil.

Just before serving, toss watercress with enough dressing to coat. Quarter, pit, and peel avocado, then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Gently toss with watercress.


Huzarensalade (Hussar's salad)

This recipe came from our "authentic" Dutch cookbook (put that way because I'm skeptical fo anything claiming to be ethnically authentic when it has been written and published in the US), and I made minimal changes to it, believe it or not. Reading the ingredient list I wasn't entirely sure about it, but the final product was both pretty and tasty.


Origin: Classic Dutch Cooking
Yield: serves 6
Ethnicity: Dutch

  ● 1 lettuce (I used green leaf)
  ● 6 oz. potatoes, boiled
  ● 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  ● 3 tbsp white wine vinegar
  ● 1 tsp mustard
  ● 1 tart apple
  ● 4 gherkins, chopped
  ● 4 tbsp cocktail onions, chopped
  ● 1 beetroot, cooked, peeled, and diced
  ● 2 hardboiled eggs, diced
  ● 1 cup mayonnaise, divided
  ● salt and pepper
  ● 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped

1. Wash lettuce leaves and tear into bite sized pieces. Divide between six bowls and set aside.

2. Dice the potatoes and peel and dice the apple. Mix with the oil, vinegar, and mustard in a bowl, and season with salt and pepper.

3. Set aside 1 tbsp each of the gherkins, onions, and beetroot for the garnish.

4. Carefully mix gherkins, onions, and eggs, with the potato, stirring until well combined.

5. Make a small mountain of this mixture over the lettuce leaves in each bowl.

6. Garnish with a sprinkling of parsley and a dollop of mayonnaise before serving.


Tomato, basil, and mozzarella salad

It doesn't get more basic, more fresh, or more delightful than this!  We are growing basil in pots on our deck this year and we've been told that the key to growing in abundance is to use them frequently, paring them back for fresh growth.  That being the case, our arms have been twisted into enjoying fresh basil more often!  Since we are leaving on vacation tomorrrow we thought that a small salad, using the cherry tomatoes from our organic delivery and fresh mozzarella cheese from this morning's visit to Plum Market, would make up a great use for that pared back basil.  Yum!

There's not a whole lot of direction for this one, just throw together some small tomatoes (I halved my cherry tomatoes to release some of their juices and flavors), some small mozzarella balls, and fresh torn basil leaves, then sprinkle with olive oil, basil, and touch of salt; toss to coat and serve immediately!


Needs some work

We love to try new things, and that obviously means we will sometimes run across a concoction that doesn't make the grade.  I can honestly say there has only been one dinner in all our years together that saw the inside of the disposal and was usurped by the pizza delivery guy - and that was many years ago - but there are lots of other recipes that have made their way into our never-again pile (aka the recycling bin), or our needs-some-work pile.  Today's recipe was of the latter category.  Why do I share it, then?  Because it's all a matter of taste, and because maybe you can do a better job!  If you have any ideas for alterations, let me know.

Spinach, beet, and goat cheese salad

First, scrub four medium beets and then boil them until tender (about 20-30 minutes), then drain, cool, and cut into bite sized pieces.  The hardest part is done.  Now heat about 1/2 cup EVOO and 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar in a pan.  Add spinach (eyeball it - however much you want to serve is good) and stir to coat with oil mixture until wilted.  Transfer to a serving dish and toss with beets, goat cheese, and candied walnuts (make these by toasting them in a hot pan, then adding maple syrup and stirring to coat, then allowing to cool on wax paper).  Serve warm.

Now, what didn't I like?  First, next time I'm going to skip the wilting step and serve this cold - I've seen it mentioned both ways.  Then, beets are sweet, and to me they were a little over-powering in this mixture (could be because they were in a very high ratio to the spinach), so I might tone it down a bit.  Also, I think next time I would try feta instead of goat cheese - the bitterness of the goat cheese was just a bit too much of a contrast for me.  The nuts are a good crunch, but an additional thought for next time might be crunchy pear.  We'll let you know if our second try is at all more successful.

Oh, and a good heads up would be "never make this while wearing white".  Just a thought.