This is one of my favorite salads: it’s an adaptation of a Shaved Brussels Sprouts salad I had at a now-forgotten restaurant in Los Angeles. Later I adapted my own adaptation by substituting thinly sliced Brussels Sprouts with Broccoli Slaw from Trader Joe’s: it dramatically cuts down the work and time.
3 cups Broccoli Slaw (or thinly sliced Brussels Sprouts) 1 tart apple, cored, and thinly sliced or julienned 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese 1/4 cup toasted chopped walnuts or almonds
2 tablespoons olive oil 2 tablespoons sherry or rice vinegar 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Put all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss well.
Cover and refrigerate at least one hour and up to four.
With the help of good quality canned white beans, this meal can be whipped up in minutes. If you want to make the salad in advance, leave out the oil, vinegar and lemon juice until just prior to serving. The chicken can also be made in advance, by this method or on a grill, and served cold. With sliced cucumbers and a bottle of white wine, it makes a perfect summer picnic.
Although this recipe calls for cooking chicken, you can use leftover grilled chicken or steak. You can also vary the fruit and use mango, grapefruit or peach instead of orange and vary the cheese and use feta or goat instead of the blue. Serve this with a hunk of bread
2 cups day old french or sourdough bread, cubed ½ pound ricotta salata cheese or feta cheese, cut in chunks 2 medium tomatoes, diced 1 cucumber, peeled and seeded, if desired; halved and thinly sliced 1 red onion, diced 1 yellow bell pepper, cubed 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano 1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped or pressed 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon black pepper 2 tablespoons olive oil
Combine bread, cheese, vegetables and herbs in a large mixing bowl.
Place garlic, vinegar, salt, pepper and oil in a bowl and mix well. Drizzle over vegetables.
Depending on what you serve with this and how hungry you are, this salad will serve 2- 4 people. For two hungry people who don’t want to heat up a kitchen and don’t want to make anything else, add pita bread and this salad will satisfy. For a slightly more demanding crowd, the addition of soup will round this out nicely. If you don’t have leftover chicken, you can simply omit it.
This easy and nutritious salad can be made in minutes and depending upon your inclination, it can be the centerpiece of the meal or a substantial accompaniment. On a hot night, serve it simply on a bed of greens with a loaf of bread but the more industrious, or hungry ones might eliminate the ham and serve it alongside grilled chicken or tuna.
1 pound rotini, cooked al dente and cooled under cold water
1 bunch scallions, cut diagonally into one inch pieces
1 small head broccoli, woody end discarded, florets separated, stem peeled and julienned
1 red bell pepper, cored and sliced
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
For the spicy peanut dressing:
3 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon fresh ginger root, peeled and sliced
2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 egg, room temperature
3/4 cup natural peanut butter (no salt, no sugar, no preservatives)
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup Oriental sesame oil
Bring 4 quarts of water to boil in a large pot. Add pasta and cook until completely tender. Drain immediately and rinse several times with cold water. Transfer pasta to a large mixing bowl.
While the pasta is cooking, make the spicy peanut dressing.
Place garlic and ginger in a blender or in a food processor fitted with a steel blade; process until the garlic is chopped. Add red pepper, chili powder, mustard, egg, peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar and water and process until combined. Gradually add oils. Pour dressing over cooled pasta.
Place broccoli in colander and rinse with hottest water possible. Rinse and refresh with cold water.
Add broccoli, scallions, pepper and sesame seeds just prior to serving.
Packed full of protein and fat, Cobb Salad seems to be me the perfect fare for anyone on a low-carbohydrate diet. In 1936, so the story goes, Bob Cobb, the owner of the Brown Derby restaurant in Los Angeles, went into the restaurant’s kitchen and put whatever intrigued him into a salad. He served it to some friends, who later came back looking to have it replicated.
Before I started writing cookbooks I owned From the Night Kitchen, a take-out shop in Brookline Village, Massachusetts. One couple used to come in every time they were going to take a trip (and they traveled a lot). They would have me pack a lunch for the plane that always included this salad. I always think of them when I fly and when I make this salad. They would certainly have agreed with Wolfgang Puck, chef and restaurateur, who said, “To me, an airplane is a great place to diet.” Unless, of course, you bring your own lunch.
When my sister-in-law, Annette, told me about this summer salad, I turned my nose up at it. But she didn’t warn me how truly amazing it was and that I would be spending a good deal of my summer shucking and shaving corn. If you must, you can use frozen or canned corn, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
For me, Thousand Island and Russian dressings are interchangeable, as they have as their chief components both mayonnaise and chili sauce. The name “Russian dressing” is really a misnomer because it’s come to be as American as apple pie. One rumor has it that the name derives from the fact that it originally had Russian caviar in it. Today, horseradish or hot dog relish often gives the dressing its texture.
Thick and creamy, this can be used as a dip for crudités or Boston Trio chicken as well as a dressing on any green salad. A slightly updated but classic combo for this dressing is a wedge of iceberg lettuce sprinkled with bacon, avocado, and cherry or grape tomatoes. Another impressive salad combination is romaine lettuce with pears and lightly toasted walnuts. Burgers and roast beef sandwiches also benefit from this tangy combination, as do steamed broccoli and cauliflower.
Legend has it that Green Goddess dressing was created in the 1920s by the chef at the San Francisco’s Palace Hotel in honor of actor George Arliss, who was appearing in a play called Green Goddess. It is said that he requested that a dressing be named after him, but why this particular combination became Green Goddess is a mystery to me.
While this is the traditional dressing for a classic Caesar Salad – whole or chopped romaine lettuce, lots of Parmesan cheese (optional in the dressing but not in the salad itself), and croutons – you can use it as an all-purpose salad dressing. Additionally, you can substitute feta cheese for the Parmesan, and for a main course, add cooked chicken, shrimp, or steak.
When my friend Nancy served this dressing on a simple green salad for family and friends, everyone loved it but no one could guess what was in it. Pal Urit Chaimovitz guess artichoke hearts and husband Steve said honey. But it was 7-year-old Joey who put his nose toward the salad and correctly guessed pesto. While it’s great on any combination of mixed greens, it’s also perfect drizzled on tomatoes and goat cheese; chilled new potatoes; cold noodles with julienned vegetables; and pasta with halved grape or cherry tomatoes and fresh mozzarella or Parmesan cheese.
Although this dressing is high flavored, it complements many different flavors. It’s especially good on a salad of bunch spinach, apples or pears, sesame seeds, and raisins or craisins, or on romaine with cheddar cheese, apples, and walnuts. It can also be used as a marinade for chicken or a drizzle for grilled salmon.
This tart and lively dressing can be used on salads and steamed vegetables (especially artichokes and broccoli), and drizzled on grilled chicken, salmon, or swordfish. Pepper lovers might want to increase the amount of one or both of the peppers (keeping in mind that the heat of the peppers strengthens as they sit). And of course, the pepper can be decreased or simply eliminated.
This salad is just the thing to serve as a summer lunch or as a starter to a meal. The recipe calls for plain shrimp but you can also use Chili-Rubbed Shrimp if you have some left over. I like to scoop it up with tortilla chips.
Egyptian pharaohs forbade their subjects to eat mushrooms because they considered them to be the food of the gods and saved them for themselves, but I see no reason not to share this luxurious risotto with your guests.
The truth is that there are enough salsa recipes for an entire other book, but I couldn’t resist this one, which is more unusual than most. Try it with grilled fish.
Makes about 3 cups.
½ pineapple, peeled, cored, and finely chopped 1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted, and finely chopped 1 ripe papaya peeled, seeded, and finely chopped 1 medium-size onion, finely chopped 1 jalapeño chile, seeded and finely chopped Juice and grated zest of 1 well-washed lime Kosher salt to taste
1. Place everything in a medium-size nonreactive mixing bowl and mix well.
2. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 2 hours.
I have to admit that I only had ranch dressing from a bottle, and even that only a few times. But my daughter, Lauren, loves it, and I thought it would be great to have a homemade version. If you want to use it as a salad dressing, simply add more buttermilk until it reaches the desired consistency.
Makes 1½ cups.
½ cup sour cream or Yogurt Cheese ½ cup mayonnaise ¼ cup buttermilk ¼ cup finely diced or grated red onion 2 tablespoons finely chopped celery leaves 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1. Place all ingredients in a medium-size bowl and stir until well combined.
2. Transfer to a serving bowl, cover, and refrigerate at least 1 hour before serving and up to 8 hours.
Serve with steamed tiny new potatoes still in their jackets.
The avocadoes and hearts of palm should be cut in similar sizes. You can either slice each lengthwise or dice the avocado and slice the Hearts of Palm vertically.
However you cut them, divide them into four parts and place on individual plates. Add oil and vinegar and top with shavings of Pecorino. Add pepper to taste.
Note: Many people think of avocados as esoteric and although used as a vegetable, avocados are actually fruits. Hass avocados are pebbly skinned and available in the summer and California Fuerte’s are darker and smooth skinned and available almost all year long. Most people have a preference for one over the other, but let your own taste be your guide.
Either way, they should be stored in a warm, place until they’re ripe, at which point, it’s fine to refrigerate them. To speed the ripening process, place avocados in a brown paper bag, which will force the maturation process.
¾ cup each red kidney, black, white beans, garbanzo or fava beans (3 cups beans in total, any combination is fine)
2 cups green beans, trimmed and snapped in half
½ bunch scallions, root end and 1 inch of green part trimmed and discarded, remainder chopped
½ small bunch parsley, coarsely chopped (about ¼ cup)
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon dried basil
1 - 2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Place the beans, scallions and parsley in a medium size mixing bowl and toss to combine. Set aside.
Place the garlic in a food processor or blender and pulse until the garlic is chopped. Add vinegar, mustard and basil and mix until well combined. With the machine running, slowly add oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour over beans and refrigerate for a least two hours to let the flavors meld. Serve cold or at room temperature.
1 purple onion, thinly sliced or 1 bunch scallions
4 cups cooked wild rice
½ pound fresh or smoked turkey or chicken, diced or shredded
1 large fresh tomato, diced or 1 pint cherry tomatoes, left whole
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
8 sundried tomatoes, chopped
2 garlic cloves
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon soy sauce
5 tablespoons olive oil
Heat a small non stick skillet over medium heat and add oil. When the oil is hot, add the onion and cook about 10 minutes or until the onion is wilted. Set aside to cool.
Combine wild rice, smoked turkey, tomato, onion and parsley in a large bowl and set aside.
To make the dressing, place all the ingredients in a blender or a food processor fitted with a steel blade and mix until well combined. While the motor is running, gradually add olive oil. Add to rice mixture and serve either room temperature or chilled.
Note: To cook the rice: put 1 1/2 cups rice in pot with 6 cups water, bring to boil, cover and cook, partially covered, over low heat for about 45 – 50 minutes. Let sit 10 minutes and then cool. If necessary, drain.
1 large stalk broccoli, woody end discarded, florets separated, stem peeled and julienned
2 carrots, julienned
1 red bell pepper, cored and julienned
½ cup finely chopped fresh parsley
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese or more to taste
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add pasta and cook until completely tender. Drain immediately and rinse several times with cold water. Transfer pasta to a large mixing bowl.
While the pasta is cooking, make the vinaigrette. Place salt, garlic, oregano, mustard and vinegar in a blender or food processor fitted with a steel blade. Process until the garlic is completely chopped. Gradually add oil. Pour dressing over the cooled pasta.
Place broccoli in a colander and rinse with hottest water available. Rinse and refresh with cold water.
Add vegetables, parmesan and parsley just prior to serving.
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add pasta and cook until tender. Drain immediately and rinse with cold water. Place in a medium size serving bowl and add tomatoes, basil or parsley and pinenuts, if desired. Set aside.
Place the sundried tomatoes and the water in a small bowl and let sit 5 minutes or until the tomatoes start to soften. Add the tomatoes and water, along with the remaining ingredients to a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Puree until smooth.
Combine dressing with pasta and add parmesan, if desired. Serve cold or at room temperature.
Notes: this sauce is great on grilled or poached chicken and fish.
1 19 ounce can white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup water or vegetable or fish stock
1 pound fresh tuna, about 1 - 1½ inches thick
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 - 2 fresh tomatoes, diced
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley or basil
Trim the root off the leeks and remove all but 2 inches of the green part. Julienne and wash the remaining portion in several changes of hot water, being sure to get rid of any sand. Drain well in a colander.
Heat a large non stick skillet over medium low heat and add 1 teaspoon olive oil. Add the leeks, celery, carrots, bay leaf and thyme and cook until the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes. Add the beans and water or stock and cook about 5 minutes or until the beans are soft and heated through. Remove from pan and place on a large serving dish. Set aside and cover.
In the same pan, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil over medium high heat and add the tuna. Cook for about 5 minutes per side or until desired doneness. Cut into large chunks and place over bean mixture. Sprinkle with balsamic vinegar, tomatoes and parsley or basil.