Tag Archives: olive oil

Definitely not a side salad

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This hearty salad could be a meal on its own. I’ve posted a quinoa salad before, but this one takes the cake.
I used a recipe from the Vegan Planet and switched it up a little bit.

Here’s what you’ll need:
An 11 oz (300g) box or handful of mixed greens
One cup cooked, cooled quinoa
1 cucumber, chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts
2 pears, sliced
Handful of dried cranberries

Dressing (taken directly from the recipe):
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic
1 tablespoon dijon mustard

To assemble:
1. Mix dressing ingredients together in a bowl. Set aside.
2. In a separate bowl combine greens, cucumber, pear, nuts and dried cranberries. Mix in half of the dressing and stir well.
3. Mix the other half of the dressing in with the cooked, cooled quinoa. (For instructions, see this previous post).
4. Add quinoa to bowl and mix into salad.
5. Dish into four bowls.

On the road

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So I am on the road this summer, dipping down into the states before surfacing back in Canada in Quebec for a wedding!

I haven’t been able to post much or I should say I haven’t been motivated to post anything because it’s been beens and sandwiches mostly.

But, today we made this salad to go with our sandwiches. It was inspired from a salad I made when visiting my sister in Vancouver earlier this year when we threw some veggies together with pinto beans.

Here’s what you’ll need:
3 ripe tomatoes, diced
1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
1 onion, chopped
Handful of parsley, chopped
1 can of white pinto beans, drained
1 tablespoon olive oil
Pepper for seasoning

To prepare:
Throw everything in a bowl and mix. Enjoy!

Chicken and cheese … salad

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Tonight’s meal involves shredded chicken and breaded, heated goat cheese on a bed of spinach with a lemon, Dijon and tarragon dressing. I added two pears – cut in chunks – which was the perfect addition.

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I chose this meal to honour the memory of our late kitten, Nola. She passed away last weekend due to a congenital liver disorder. Nola loved to follow us around the house, and the  kitchen was no exception. She would hop up on the closest bar stool and watch me chop, sauté and assemble a meal. She was a picky eater but we discovered a  wet food flavored chicken and cheese that she loved. Even in her last few days, when she was at her weakest, she would manage to eat a few bites when we cracked the can open.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • A bundle of spinach
  • Three cups shredded cooked chicken (I purchased a rotisserie chicken and skinned and tore it apart – I used about 2/3 of the bird)
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs or panko
  • 1 egg
  • 1 block of goat cheese (about 150 gram packet) *Keep in the fridge until it’s ready to cut to help keep its form*
  • Zest and juice of one lemon
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons tarragon
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 pears, cut into chunks

Let’s get started:

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  1. Cut the stems off of the spinach, wash and place in a bowl
  2. IMG_3683Add Shredded chicken on top
  3. Cut the pears, place in bowl as well
  4. IMG_3685In a separate bow, add the olive oil, tarragon, lemon juice and zest and Dijon mustard. Mix. Pour on top of salad.
  5. IMG_3687Now for the cheese: Mix the bread crumbs and egg together.
  6. IMG_3690Cut the goat cheese into eight, think chunks
  7. IMG_3691Heat some canola oil in a pan over medium heat
  8. IMG_3693Pat the bread crumbs to the cheese chunks. Place on pan for about a minute, flip (you don’t want them to melt, just let the bread crisp, so watch them carefully).
  9. Place breaded cheese on top of the salad. Enjoy.

This one’s for you, Nola!

‘Tis the season for pomengranates

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Here is the second part of yesterday’s blog post — the Baby Spinach with Avocado, Pomegranate and Sunflower Seeds salad. This recipe wasn’t taken from the Moosewood. I took it from Jillian Michaels’ Master Your Metabolism Cookbook. (Michaels was one of the personal coaches featured on the Biggest Loser back in the day and is apparently coming back in January 2013 for all you fans).

This is a great time to cook with pomegranates because they’re currently in season until about January. You can buy the juice all year but not the fruit. And the seeds are juicy and crunchy and a great addition to salads.

Read more here about the health benefits of this fruits but to shorten it for you here is the summary — “a glass of pomegranate juice has more antioxidants than red wine, green tea, blueberries, and cranberries.”

This recipe asks for spinach and I find a plain spinach salad can be a little slimy tasting so I purchased a mixed greens and herb package from Planet Organic. It had some dill in it, which added a great flavour.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 large shallot, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 10 oz baby spinach leaves
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds toasted (something I never do, I just toss them in)
  • 1 avocado

1. Throw the orange zest and juice, lime zest and juice, shallot, olive oil,  chili powder, salt and pepper into a blender. Mix until smooth and set aside.

2. Fill a large bowl with cold water. Cut the pom in half. Holding on half under the water and remove the seeds with your hands. Drain the seeds well, discarding the membrane. Set aside 3/4 cup. Use the rest another time. (I don’t always need the  bowl of water but I do find it helps with rubbing off the membrane).

3. Combine the greens and all but 2 tablespoons of the pom seeds, the sunflower seeds, and about 1/4 cup of the dressing. Toss gently to coat. Dish salad out onto plates (To roast the seeds: place on baking sheet and cook for 2 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven).

4. Pitt, peel and slice the avocado thinly before arranging on top of the salad. Spinkle the rest of the seeds on top with remaining sauce.