|May 14, 2019||Posted by Wendy Perry under asparagus, cook & eat nekkid, dressings, garden goodness, honey, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, pasta, published, salads, slaws and such, sensational sides|
It’s Asparagus time… and here is a simple way to put this bright-in-color-and-flavor salad on your spring table!
|January 30, 2019||Posted by Wendy Perry under dressings, gluten free, honey, low carb, Mindless Mutterings from the Teacher's Lounge, published, salads, slaws and such, sensational sides, wendy's signature recipes|
As I sit here on this really cold day, watching stories from temps in the midwest United States colder than Antarctica with records being broken, this salad came to mind. I created it for January 2018 issue of Carolina Country magazine… when citrus fruits are plentiful. Sure to break through the winter doldrums, this vibrant salad, both in taste and color, will break the monotony of heavy winter comfort foods, and offer a reminder of warm spring and summer days ahead.
A few helpful hints:
Getting the arils (seeds) out of a pomegranate are not as challenging as one might think. Don’t let that keep you from enjoying these tasty fruits. They are most plentiful and in season from November into the early part of the year. Here are a couple of ways to get those crunchy little nuggets out in just a minute or two.
Pomegranates have all sorts of nutritional benefits. Just do a quick google search to find a site you trust to “read all about it.”
When buying… look for smooth-skinned fruits that feel “heavy.” That means more juicy arils tucked inside! They will keep for weeks in the refrigerator, and can even be frozen.
Ways to use pomegranate…
- for a snack “as is”
- on top of salads
- scattered on yogurt
- in grains and grain salads
- in salsa and guacamole
- over oatmeal
- scattered over hummus
- in cocktails and in champagne
- over ice cream
- in sauces spooned over grilled or sauteed meats
- as a garnish for pureed vegetable soups
- in relishes
- tossed over vegetables like green beans or asparagus
What are blood oranges?
The blood orange is a variety of orange with crimson, almost blood-colored flesh. The distinctive dark flesh color is due to the presence of anthocyanins, a family of antioxidant pigments common to many flowers and fruit, but uncommon in citrus fruits. Chrysanthemin is the main compound found in red oranges.
The skin of blood oranges may be darker orange and “blood” toned like the flesh. It tends to be thicker also. The flavor of a blood orange is different than your usual orange… some say it has raspberry undertones. I don’t find that to be the case (I don’t care for raspberries but love blood oranges). Due to growing conditions necessary for them, you will not find them year round. Their season is from December to early spring.
When buying, look for those that feel “heavy.” Stay away from those that feel spongy. They can be stored a couple of weeks in the refrigerator. Use to spiff up winter salads or enjoy as is. Blood oranges have some great medicinal qualities too. Just google to read from trusted sources.
Add these salad ingredients to your next grocery shopping list! And add some sunshine to your table this week…
- 2 blood oranges
- 2 naval oranges
- 2 clementines or tangerines
- 2 limes
- 2 lemons
- 2 grapefruit
- seeds from one pomegranate
- 1-2 avocados
- 1 cup chopped pistachio nuts
- freshly ground pepper (I like to use pink peppercorns for color)
- fresh mint, optional
- 1/2 cup grapeseed oil (or EVOO if preferred)
- 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon grapefruit juice
- 2 tablespoons blood orange juice
- 1 tablespoons blood orange zest
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 1/2 teaspoon dried spearmint
- pinch of salt
Peel the citrus fruits and cut into thin slices, removing any seeds. Place onto platter along with avocado.
Garnish with pomegranate seeds, nuts, pepper and sprigs of mint.
To make vinaigrette:
Put all ingredients in jar with lid and shake to blend. Best if made at least one hour ahead.
Well here we are, in the dog days of summer! In my neck of the woods, it’s been the monsoon days of summer. Rain! RaiN! RAIN! But hopefully, we have a little break in sight for that and can now “look forward” to good old hot.humid.days.of.August! And who wants to turn on anything that will add to that heat? Ummmm, nobody. This recipe for Italian Rotisserie Chicken Salad Stuffed Tomatoes was first published last summer in Carolina Country Magazine and a frequent go-to for me. We all love to grab a cooked rotisserie chicken now and then… we can do so many things with one… not to mention throwing the skin and bones into the crock pot overnight after pick’n for the BEST flavorful chicken broth. You DO do that don’t you? Oh there’s so much flavor in those bones and skin (if you don’t eat it) and all you have to do is cover with a quart or two of water, turn on low, and head to bed. By morning time, you’ll be waking up to the aroma of tasty broth to use for soups, cooking veggies like greens and butterbeans or just to sip. You can throw in some herbs on the front end, or simply cool and freeze and season on the back end depending on how you’ll be using it. I freeze in pint-size containers and it’s great to be able to grab and cook a little pot of butterbeans or collards with this deliciousness!
So here’s to the versitile Rotisserie Chicken!! Pick one up today and make this chicken salad twist… ooooh la LA, you’ll be glad you did.
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classy with a bit of sass!!
Who wants to cook on hot summer days? No need with this flavorful Italian chicken salad.... just pick up a rotisserie chicken, throw in a few ingredients and toss with the simple Dijon dressing, and that's it! Except for a juicy ripe summer tomato you're going to stuff with this good stuff.
- 1 rotisserie chicken, skinned, boned & shredded (about 5 cups)
- 1/2 cup sliced roasted peppers, drained
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1/2 cup diced celery
- 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley, plus 2 tablespoons for garniish
- 1 4 ounce carton feta cheese with basil and tomato, reserve 2 tablespoons
- 2 tablespoons capers drained
- 8 large tomatoes, cored and drained upside down
- 1/2 cup Dijon mustard
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- crushed black pepper
Whisk all dressing ingredients together. Stir dressing into chicken to coat. Add all remaining ingredients (except the tomatoes) and mix well.
Chill several hours or overnight. Stuff tomatoes and garnish with reserved feta cheese crumbles and parsley. Serve immediately
- Don’t cut out too much of the delicious tomato — just enough to mound the chicken salad!
- If you have fresh herbs... oregano, rosemary, basil, etc., use them instead of dried for more robust flavor!
A few years ago while food styling and creating recipes at Our State Magazine, I had the opportunity to create some “sauces” for Fried Green Tomatoes! We Southerners know summertime isn’t complete without enjoying this tangy fried treat. OK, I’m sure some folks may coat and bake them, but Wendy don’t play that with some things, and “Fried” green ‘maters are one of those things.
Most of us have our preferred way to cook those, so this post isn’t about that…. since basically you just dip in buttermilk, crumbs…. and fry!
Today, I’d like to share the 3 toppings the magazine published. See if you find one you like, or if you have a preferred way to serve, please add a note about that in the comments below!
The toppings are…
- Herby Mayo Dressing… like Green Goddess
- Whipped Feta & Basil Pimento Cheese
- Sweet ‘n Hot Strawberry Spread
Enjoy these recipes on Our State’s site or printable below!
Recipes published June 2015
Try a drizzle of this dressing, then add bits of bacon and chopped chives. (Hint: It tastes great on salads or as a vegetable dip, too.)
Yield: About 1¼ cups.
- 3/4 cup mayonnaise, Duke's preferred
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons garlic paste (or 4 cloves, grated)
- 4 whole scallions, chopped
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- several turns freshly ground black pepper
Put all ingredients into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the dressing is blended and the herbs are incorporated. Store in a jar in the refrigerator. Serve at room temperature.
This recipe calls for feta cheese, but you can easily substitute goat cheese if preferred.
Yield: About 1 pint.
- 8 ounces feta cheese
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons diced pimento, drained
- 2 teaspoons spicy brown mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1-2 teaspoons sugar optional
- 6-8 fresh basil leaves
Put all ingredients except basil leaves into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until combined and fluffy. Tear up 3 or 4 of the basil leaves, add to the pimento cheese, and pulse until chopped and incorporated into the cheese. Roll up remaining leaves and slice into thin ribbons.
Spoon cheese on top of warm fried green tomatoes. Garnish with basil ribbons.
- 2 tablespoons drained chow chow
- 1 tablespoon strawberry jam or preserves
- fresh basil optional
Stir to combine and spread onto fried green tomatoes.