I had been trying for months to get my God mother and a few cousins to my home for lunch. It seemed, with crazy schedules, it was taking forever to make it happen. We picked a date and made it work! We had a wonderful afternoon. I served this dish for lunch. I had seen a similar dish at a restaurant I had eaten at recently. I made a few changes and liked this version better. The girls loved it too!
- 1 whole chicken
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1 granny smith apple
- 4 oz. chopped walnuts
- 1 whole avocado per guest
- mixed greens
- grape tomatoes
- balsamic vinegar
- olive oil
- crazy salt
- ground black pepper
- garlic powder
(My husband, Bill, cooked the chicken for me on the rotisserie on the grill, seasoned with crazy salt, ground black pepper and garlic powder. It was cooked perfectly!)
Cut off all of the meat from the chicken, dark and white, into cubes. Add the mayonnaise (I used 1/2 cup of regular and 1/2 cup of Miracle Whip. Some people don’t like Miracle Whip, but I think it adds a nice flavor). Cube the apple and add that with the walnuts to the chicken. Toss.
Put the chicken salad into halved avocados. Each guest should receive two stuffed halves. The avocados that I used were very ripe so I left the bottom skin on. If they are a little more firm, you can skin them entirely.
Toss the mixed greens with balsamic vinegar, olive oil and crazy salt.
For the presentation, I halved a couple of grape tomatoes on each plate, put a serving of the greens and placed the stuffed avocados on top.
Chill and serve. Enjoy, we did!
A great side for any summer meal! This pasta salad is really easy and quite delicious. It also keeps well in the refrigerator if you don’t eat it all at once!
- 1 Box whole grain pasta (13.25 oz.)
- Grape Tomatoes
- Green Olives
- Red Onion
- Lite Italian Dressing
- 4 oz. Goat Cheese
Boil the pasta until tender (I like it a little al dente). Add a little oil and salt to the water for taste and also so it does not get sticky. Drain the pasta and add a little salad dressing (I used Lite Italian Dressing but you could also use olive oil with balsamic or red wine vinegar). Toss the dressing with the pasta soon after it is drained so it does not get sticky. I did not put strict measurements on the vegetables because it is really about individual taste. I cut in small pieces about 8 grape tomatoes, 1/2 a cucumber, 2 large green olives and 1/3 of a red onion.
Toss again with more dressing and then add the goat cheese.
The pasta will absorb the dressing so you may want to add a little more and toss before you serve.
From a tiny BEACH kitchen:
This wonderful lobster salad recipe comes from my Dad, John Hoss. He serves it with crackers for an elegant appetizer. Or simply tucks the lobster salad into a warm, toasted hot dog bun. Hot or cold, lobster salad sandwiches are best served with Cape Cod potato chips.
I had the 2 beauties pictured above cooked at Brant Rock Fish Market. I simply shucked the lobsters in my kitchen. Yes, you can buy lobster meat already shucked – just bring your wallet – it costs a fortune! Shucking a lobster is really not all that hard. However, I’ve been doing it all my life and so am probably biased.
For you virgin shuckers out there, simply follow the pictures below.
- 2 “chic” lobsters (weighing 1 pound each)
- 1 TBSP Hellman mayonnaise
- salt and pepper
- Flatbread crackers or 2 hot dog buns
Shuck lobsters. Dice into bite size pieces. Combine with mayo. Use just enough mayo to hold it all together. You don’t want the lobster meat dripping with mayo. Add fresh cracked pepper and salt. Serve warm or chilled. As Barefoot Contessa says, “How easy is THAT?”
Whole Cooked Lobster:
Getting the sweet lobster meat onto your fork may seem like a daunting challenge to some. There are 2 solutions to this; you can buy already shucked fresh lobster meat, or once you have cooked your lobster you can follow these simple steps:
Claws: Remove the lobster claws by twisting them from the body. Using a nutcracker, seafood shell cracker or pliers, crack the shells of the claws, and pull out the meat. Don’t forget to push the meat from the knuckles – some feel this is the sweetest part of the lobster.
Tail: Arch the back of the lobster until it cracks or twist the tail to separate it from the lobster’s body. Break off the tail flippers, insert a fork, and push the tail meat out in one large piece. Peel back the thin piece covering the tail and remove the anal cord.
Body: Unhinge the back shell from the lobster’s body. You’ll see a green area (called the “tomalley”) that is considered a delicacy by some, and the coral-colored “roe” which is also edible.
Crack the lobster’s body by pulling it apart sideways. Lobster meat can be found in the four pockets where the larger legs attach. There is also a small bit of meat in each of the walking legs.
This antipasto salad could be a meal in itself. Many times I have happily sat down to an antipasto platter! For the celebration dinner, I prepared this a little differently. This recipe will serves 8 generously.
- 3 Romaine hearts chopped
- 8 ounces salami cut into small cubes ( ask the deli man to cut you a thick slice)
- 24 pitted Kalamata olives, halved ( supermarket olive bar)
- 24 large pitted green olives, halved (supermarket olive bar)
- 8 ounces provolone cheese, sliced into srtips
- 1 large jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained well
- 1 16oz. jar marinated assorted veggies, drained well and roughly chopped
- 1 120z. jar roasted red peppers,drained, patted dry, and roughly chopped
An evening of mixed grill has been a long time favorite of mine. Although I am trying to eat more vegetarian these days, every once in a while I break out and enjoy a taste of all these lovely things at one sitting. To have guests to enjoy this with makes it special. This was my evening dinner party and we all had fun tasting all the different flavors.
The key to enjoying this meal is to have bites of all the offerings so you are not stuffed and have had a fun time enjoying all the flavors. There you have it…. A complete meal with each item complimenting the next. A great time was had by all and why not?
THE MEAT SOURCES:
1. I opted for apple chicken sausage and oven roasted them at 375 degrees on a cookie sheet lined with non-stick foil until they were browned beautifully. I accompanied them with jarred sliced hot cherry peppers. A super combination that you need to taste to believe.
2. In the same oven on another cookie sheet lined with non-stick foil I roasted the chicken drumsticks. They were seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic powder, oregano and fresh lemon juice.
3. Petite filets of sirloin was the real meat lovers part of the mixed grill. Rubbed with olive oil and seasoned simply with a little salt and pepper and grilled to perfection.
BAKED SWEET POTATO FRIES
I scrubbed these sweet potatoes really clean. Leaving the skins on, I sliced them into a french fry size, placed them in a bowl and drizzled them with olive oil. The spices were salt, pepper and garlic powder. Place them on a non-stick foil lined baking sheet in a 400 degree oven, turning them periodically for approximately 35 minutes.
BABY ORGANIC KALE:
You can find this in some markets. The brand is Olivia’s and I find her organics are always fresh and wonderful. Simply wash and pick through them for any that may be yellowing. I spin them till they are dry leaving only traces of water. Place a fry pan over med-high heat and add a little olive oil and as much garlic as you feel you would like. I used jarred garlic as the taste is sweeter and not to strong as to not over power the baby kale’s flavor. Stir fry till wilted which happens very quickly so this should be done at the very last minute before dinner is served.
First a healthy appetizer of sliced cucumber with a dollop of roasted red pepper hummus and topped with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, salt and fresh cracked pepper.
Next is a very simple salad made with sliced garden tomatoes, crumbled feta, fresh basil leaves from the plant outside my door (makes a world of difference) and a few Kalamata olives. I always dress this salad with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
This recipe was adapted from Cooking Light Magazine. It is a super quick and easy delicious summer salad. Please don’t substitute other greens for the baby mixed herb greens, the herbs really make the salad fabulous. I would like to recognize my son Kevin, who has recently taken up photography and is responsible for all my photos. Nice job Kevin!!!
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup sherry vinegar, divided
- 4 teaspoons agave nectar, divided
- 2/3 cup thinly vertically sliced Vidalia onion
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 (4 ounce) packages baby mixed herb salad
- 1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled blue cheese
- 1 (6 ounce) package fresh raspberries
Combine 1/4 cup water, 2 tablespoons vinegar, and 1 tablespoon agave in a small bowl. Add onion; toss to coat. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes, drain (I marinate for longer than 30 minutes, I think the onions taste better this way).
Combine remaining 2 tablespoons vinegar, remaining 1 teaspoon agave, mustard, pepper, and salt in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Gradually add oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add salad greens; toss gently to coat. Arrange about 1 cup salad on each of 8 plates. Top each serving with about 1 tablespoon cheese, and about 6 raspberries. Makes 8 servings.
This salad receipe I made recently for a family party and it instantly became a huge hit. I must give credit to Rita for sharing this one with the gang. Rita helped me get the dressing combination perfect (originally, I had too much vinegar). The photo shows how beautifully the color combinations look on a buffet table.
- 1 Package (approx. 6 oz.) Mixed Greens
- 1/2 lb. Fresh Strawberries, sliced for the salad (plus an additional 1/3 cup strawberries to “mash” for the dressing)
- 2 Kiwis, peeled and sliced
- 1/2 cup chopped Walnuts
- 1/2 cup Olive Oil
- 3 TBSP Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 TBSP Sugar
- Feta Cheese, 1/2 cup, crumbled or diced (buy imported, if you can find it. It is the best! We use “Doondis” feta)
For the Salad:
The listed ingredients above will make a salad large– enough to feed 4-6 people. I made a huge salad for my family party and had to triple the dressing (that is where I got myself into trouble and Rita bailed me out!)
Wash and spin, or, hand dry the greens and lay on a pretty platter. Slice the strawberries and kiwis to put on top of mixed greens.
Chop the walnuts until they are in small (but not tiny) pieces. Put walnuts in a hot frying pan and toast. Be careful not to burn the walnuts– when they start to give off an aroma, turn them over and off heat. Layer toasted walnuts on top of fruit.
Sprinkle feta cheese on top of the salad. (use as much or as little as you like. I like a lot!)
For the Dressing:
Combine 1/3 cup of mashed strawberries (a food processor does a nice mashing job). Add the oil and vinegar. Add the sugar and hand stir until the granules dissolve.
Pass the dressing to guests if you are seated for the meal; or place dressing in a pretty bowl beside the salad if you are serving a buffet. Enjoy!
Note: Please do not “dress” the platter of salad all at once. The greens will quickly become soggy.