Category Archives: Salads

Vegetable Couscous Salad

Please note: this post was written last week, so the “today” and “yesterday” are not literal. Thank you for understanding.

ImageDon’t you love the concept of devouring a huge salad? It’s a gorgeous concept—dozens of flavors, textures, and colors, all tossed into one enormous mound. For you. For your hunger and your health. And if salads make you happy, it’s for your happiness, too.

I’ve become a salad fanatic lately, but I have a hard time coming up with new combinations. Sometimes a salad is a salad is a salad. Our side salads are usually lettuce, carrots, purple cabbage, avocado, and nuts. My main dish salads consist of…well, whatever I feel like putting on them. (If you’re really interested, my lunch salad today was lettuce, cucumber, grated carrot, meatloaf, orange bell pepper, and poppy seed dressing. It was fantastic.)

Right now, however, I’m going to tell you about yesterday’s salad. The salad mentioned above is not the All-Gong Oriental Salad of the title. Let me tell you about that one.

I feel like making a huge salad and eating it like a starving herbivore. (Well, not exactly.)

I grab The Two Sisters’ Cookbook and go to the Salad section.

I see the All-Gong Oriental Salad.

I start mixing. Not sure how much of all the ingredients, so this is a non-recipe.

Be advised: This recipe is NOT the same as the All-Gong Oriental Salad in the Two Sisters’ Cookbook! I just used that recipe for ideas and inspiration.

Vegetable Couscous Salad

Salad:

Lettuce, chopped

Carrots, diced

Green onion, sliced

Black olives, sliced

Broccoli, chopped

Frozen peas, thawed

Purple cabbage, chopped

Couscous

Fresh ginger, grated

Dressing:

¼ cup water

1 – 1 ½ tsp. cornstarch

Soy sauce

Lemon juice

Brown sugar

Rice wine vinegar

Fresh garlic, minced

Toss desired amount of salad ingredients in a large bowl. As you can tell from the pictures, I went heavier on the vegetables and lighter on the couscous. But that can change!

For the dressing, combine water and cornstarch. Microwave a minute or two, stirring frequently, until the mixture is bubbly and thick. Whisk in several tablespoons (each) of soy sauce, lemon juice, brown sugar, and rice wine vinegar. Toss in a little garlic. Drizzle over the salad and toss well. I would recommend chilling the salad for awhile, but yesterday I didn’t have time.

Now you can devour the salad!

Image

In case you’re wondering, I don’t like the calories of normal oil-and-vinegar dressing, so I prefer to thin them out a little with a cornstarch-and-water mixture. Thinner dressings go farther on my salads.

I’d like to know…

What do you like to add to your salads?

Image

Ah. It’s so satisfying to post, isn’t it?

See you next time!

rachel

“Not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11).

Tomato Cucumber Salad

Do you have a recipe in your mind, then start looking for it? And you aren’t contented until you find it? You want to make something up, but first you want to prove to yourself that this is legitimate? “Surely there’s a recipe with this and this and this….”

I wanted to make a Tomato Cucumber Salad. A fuzzy image hung suspended in my mind. Big chunks of tomatoes and cucumbers. Mom suggested olives. A tangy marinade. Fresh herbs.

What’s wrong with me? I don’t even like tomatoes. But I liked this salad.

Where was I? I had a salad in mind, but I needed a recipe to back it up. A little Taste of Home searching revealed a recipe – THE recipe!

I adjusted the salad ingredients a tad, but the dressing was perfect. All in all, the ingredients fall in love with one another. I don’t like olives either, by the way. But I liked this salad.

Tomato Cucumber Salad

2 medium tomatoes, cut into large chunks

2 medium cucumbers, peeled and cut into large chunks

1 (4-oz.) can sliced olives, drained and rinsed

2 small green bell peppers, cut into large chunks

2 T. fresh parsley, snipped

2 T. fresh basil, snipped

1/3 cup light olive oil

2 T. red wine vinegar

2 T. balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. dried oregano

1/4 tsp. pepper

Combine the tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, green bell peppers, and herbs in a large salad bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients. Pour over vegetables; toss to coat. Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes, up to 3 hours, before serving. Serve with a slotted spoon. Yield: 8-10 servings

Note: The original recipe called for mozzarella cheese. Feta cheese would be fantastic, too. 

See the original recipe at Taste of Home! 

I’m glad to get back into blogging a little more! I know I always seem to post on Sundays. That’s because I almost always do. I feel justified “playing” on my blog when I’m relaxing on Sunday afternoons. But I hope to post a little more during the week. That, of course, depends on whether I have recipes and pictures or not. Maybe I can create something for my Sunday night supper and share it with you.

Leave a comment. I love comments.

Thanks for stopping by!

Rachel

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. Old things have passed away, behold, all things have become new.” (2 Corinthians 5:17)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Light Italian Vinaigrette

There. I found Wednesday’s to-do list, on which I had written down our new Light Italian Vinaigrette recipe. Doesn’t that sound sophisticated? It’s not, really.

I’m not going to get scientific, but olive oil is supposed to be better for you than soybean oil. And most salad dressings you buy contain soybean oil. So Mom wanted to experiment and make our own salad dressing…one similar to Newman’s Own Lighten Up Italian dressing….with GOOD oils. So this was my first experiment. I like how it turned out.

Light Italian Vinaigrette

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup water

1 heaping tsp. cornstarch

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 T. Parmesan cheese

1/4 tsp. each salt, sugar, pepper, oregano, mustard, and onion powder

1 T. fresh basil, minced

1 T. fresh parsley, minced

In a microwave-safe measuring cup or small bowl, combine water and cornstarch. Microwave for 30-40 seconds or until bubbly. Stir until smooth. Add remaining ingredients; combine well. Pour into a salad dressing bottle and chill before serving. Drizzle over your favorite salad! Yield: 3/4-1 cup

Here’s the calorie count if anyone’s interested. I am.

1 serving (2 tablespoons) has 7 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 85 mg sodium, and not much else. But believe me, all those herbs are good for you.

I like this initial experiment of Light Italian Vinaigrette. It has a slightly funny off- or after-taste, but overall it’s very pleasing. What will I change on the next experiment? We’ll see what floats my boat then.

~Rachel~

“Let all those who seek You rejoice and be glad in You, and let such as love Your salvation say continually, ‘Let God be magnified!'” Psalm 70:4

Southwestern Spinach Salad

As Mom and I searched for “new” salad recipes, this one caught my eye. It just had to be good….and it was.

I got to serve this yesterday with Chili on Potatoes (not complicated…just pour chili on a baked potato and top it with cheese). They seemed to complement one another, although the salad would be delicious as a main dish salad (add a little grilled chicken, anyone?).

Let me share it with you.

Southwestern Spinach Salad

1/2 cup picante sauce

1/4 cup prepared Italian salad dressing

1/4 tsp. ground cumin

4 cups fresh baby spinach

1 can (15 oz.) black beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms

1 medium red bell pepper, julienned

1/2 cup sliced red onion

8 bacon strips, cooked and crumbled

4 hard-cooked eggs, sliced

Additional picante sauce, optional

In a small bowl, combine the picante sauce, salad dressing and cumin.

In a salad bowl, combine the spinach, beans, mushrooms, pepper, onion and bacon. Drizzle with dressing; toss to coat. Garnish with eggs. Serve with additional picante sauce if desired. Yield: 6 servings

*Feel free, of course, to adjust anything. I did. Less bacon, more cumin, fewer eggs, more spinach. It’s the combination that’s good!

Hope you enjoy this as much as we did. I definitely want to make this one again.

Tell me what you think if you happen to make it!

~rachel, slave of Christ~

Catch-A-Cashew Salad

Hi. My name is Catch-A-Cashew Salad. Nice to meet you, too.

I’m a little different. But I’m yummy. I originate from a recipe in the Two Sisters’ Cookbook, but Rachel’s putting me down as a non-recipe.

I’m very adaptable.

P.S. Rachel’s excited to be taking pictures of me with her new camera.

You’ll need:

Cauliflower

Cashews

Green onions

Carrots

Green peas

Mayonnaise/Yogurt

Lemon juice

Worcestershire sauce

Basil

Salt, pepper, garlic

Chop up some cauliflower and throw it in a salad bowl. Whatever looks right. Do the same thing with the cashews, green onions, peas, and carrots. Wait. Grate the carrots first. Or peel them into strips…however you like it. Now for the dressing. A little mayo or yogurt, then the lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, and herbs. Stir it together, and then taste it. Need a little more mayo? Or lemon juice? Whatever tastes good.

Enjoy. But you won’t enjoy it as much after it sits in the refrigerator a day. Enjoy it now.

Have a super day.

~Rachel~

Blessed be the name of the Lord….

Watermelon Spinach Salad

I heart this salad. What more can I say? Fresh, sweet, tangy, on and on and on. Yum.

You’ll need:

Spinach. If you don’t have spinach, use that spring mix stuff – you know, the one with all the lettuces you can’t pronounce. That one.

Watermelon. This is a watermelon salad after all.  Chop it up into bite-sized hunks.

Raspberries. This salad MUST have raspberries. It loses its wonderfulness if it doesn’t.

Candied almonds. It’s easy – chop them up, throw them in a skillet with some butter, sugar, and salt…

And cook them over low heat until nice and browned and maybe a little crunchy. Stir so it doesn’t burn.

Now put all that together. Spinach, watermelon, raspberries, and almonds. Drizzle it with the dressing that’s with the rest of the recipe.

It might look something like this.

Doesn’t that make your heart go pitter-pat? If it doesn’t, make it and eat it. Then your heart will go pitter-pat.

Watermelon Spinach Salad

Salad:

1 package (6 ounces) fresh baby spinach, torn

2 cups seeded cubed watermelon

1 cup halved green grapes (oh yeah! we didn’t have grapes. It’s even better if you add grapes!)

1 cup fresh raspberries

1/4 cup sliced almonds (better candied!)

Poppy Seed Vinaigrette:

1/2 cup white wine vinegar

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 tsp. ground mustard

1/4 tsp. onion powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/4 cup chopped onion

1 tsp. poppy seeds

Om a blender, combine the vinegar, sugar, mustard, onion powder, and salt. Cover and process until sugar is dissolved. Continue processing while adding oil in a steady stream. Add onion and poppy seeds; process until blended.

In a large salad bowl, combine the spinach, watermelon, grapes and raspberries; sprinkle with almonds. Serve with vinaigrette. Yield: 8 servings (about 1 cup vinaigrette)

That recipe is from Taste of Home. Here’s the original recipe.

I always want to write “poppy seeds” as one word. Poppyseeds. Like it?

See ya’ll later! God bless!

~Rachel~

Asparagus Salsa

Well, salsa-ish. Don’t think you can eat it with corn chips. Probably more salad-ish. But it sounds better to call it salsa. Don’t ya think?

It was quite nice, though…but maybe I only thought so because I adore the lime-cumin-cilantro-combo. Maybe you’ll think so.

Asparagus Salsa

3 cups trimmed asparagus, cut into 1 to 2-inch lengths

Yellow, orange, or green pepper, chopped (yeah, however much you want)

Cherry tomatoes, sliced or chopped

3 green onions, chopped

Fresh parsley and fresh cilantro to taste

Juice from 1/2 lime

Salad oil

Salt, pepper, chili powder, cumin, and garlic powder to taste

Steam the asparagus until crisp-tender. Unless you like it raw or soggy. Chill.

Now – just add whatever looks right. Stir and get all that lime all over everything.

Enjoy! =)

~Rachel~

Carrot Avocado Salad

Please don’t discount this salad because it sounds weird or anything. Even if it is, who cares since it’s so good? I don’t.

I beg you – use roasted almonds. They make all the difference.

Carrot Avocado Salad

5-6 cups shredded carrots (5-7 medium/large carrots)

1 avocado, diced

1/2 cup roasted almonds, chopped

1/4 cup plain yogurt

Salt to taste

Garlic – I don’t remember, but surely it would be good =)

Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Serve with happiness.

Yield: 6-8 servings

~rachel~

Kitchen Tip Tuesdays: Easy Avocados

Avocados can be so hard to peel and cut – do you agree?

So here’s an easy way to do it:

1. Slice the avocado in half; remove the pit.

2. Cut the avocado in cubes from the top; or rather, don’t cut through the skin.

3. Scoop the avocado cubes out. Break up with your fingers and sprinkle on your favorite salad!

I hope that makes since. It sure makes avocado-cutting easy!

~Rachel~

I’m putting this post on Tammy’s Recipes for Kitchen Tip Tuesday. Go to Tammy’s Recipes for more kitchen tips!

Blueberry Kiwi Salad

This salad was a creation for our church youth group’s annual Valentine’s Banquet. A new and different combo, but yum! The dressing is especially good…you might want to keep some on hand for any salad. We do. =)

Blueberry Kiwi Salad

Spring mix lettuce

Kiwis, peeled and sliced

Fresh blueberries

Dried cranberries (craisins)

Sugared almonds (see recipe below)

Citrus Poppy Seed Dressing (see recipe below)

Big-bowl method: Place desired amount of spring mix in a large salad bowl. Top with desired amount of toppings. Drizzle with dressing just before serving.

Individual-plate method: Portion out spring mix on individual saucers. Top with 3 kiwi slices, small handful each of blueberries, craisins, and almonds. Drizzle with dressing just befores serving.

Sugared Almonds:

1 cup sliced almonds

3 T. butter

2-4 T. sugar

Salt to taste

In a skillet, melt butter. Add almonds, sugar, and salt. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. Transfer to foil to cool. Break apart as needed.

Yield: +1 cup

Citrus Poppy Seed Dressing:

1 cup orange juice

4 tsp. cornstarch

1 1/2 cups salad oil

1/3 cup honey

1/2 cup vinegar

1/3 cup sugar

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1-2 T. poppy seeds

1/2 tsp. almond extract.

Combine orange juice and cornstarch in a small saucepan; whisk until smooth. Heat in saucepan while whisking. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat; let cool slightly.  Add remaining ingredients and whisk until smooth.

Yield: 3 1/3 cups (24 servings)

Multiple-choice poll: