Blog Archives

Greek Lentil Salad

From Krisann:

This lentil salad is a staple in my refridgerator.  Sometimes, I have it with my meal in place of a starch.  Often times, I have it alone as lunch.  Either way, I think it is very yummy.  This can also be served with crostini or toasts as an appetizer.  One note, it does not look as pretty on the second day, but it tastes just as good.  If you are making this to bring to a party, don’t make it too much in advance.

Ingredients:

  • 1 Pkg Trader Joe Lentils (these are found in the refridgerator section.  You can also use can lentils, but I like these ones better)
  • Grape tomatoes (cut in half)
  • 1/4 cup Scallions or red onion, chopped (red onions add nice color to this salad, but sometimes they are too strong, that is why I sometimes use scallions)
  • 1/2 English Seedless Cucumber (cut into small wedges)
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup Feta Cheese (I am very picky when it comes to feta cheese and will only use feta purchased from the greek international store in Brockton, MA called “Dondi” feta)
  • juice of 1 lemon 
  • 1/8 – 1/4 cup Olive oil
  • Garlic powder to taste
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.

Advertisements

Greek Village Salad (HOREEYATIKO SALATA)


From Peaches:

I had this beautiful salad in Greece while climbing to the Acropolis in one of the many cafes on the  side of a  mountain.  The area is fondly known as the PLAKA, which means “fun” in Greek, and they are not kidding!  Many Greeks go there to celebrate special times or just for a bite.  I go where the Greeks go- as they know where the best foods are to be found.  Nobody is ever disappointed at a Greek cafe.  They compete with one another to MAKE THE BEST OF EVERYTHING!!

If you are making this at home, it is important to try to buy Imported Greek Feta as the cheese makes all the difference in the world.   I have brought this to many dinner parties and everyone has enjoyed it as much as I have.  I hope you do too.  KALI  ORAXI EVERYONE!!

Note:  The ingredients are simple but it is important to select the best veggies wherever you shop.  For instance not just any tomato will do.  Of course right out of your garden tomatoes are the best but we are not there yet. Vine ripe tomatoes work perfectly as do the long English seedless cucumbers.

Ingredients ( Serves 6):

  • 4-5 vine ripe tomatoes cut into chunks (nice ripe ones)
  •  1 English Cucumber, unpeeled, cut in half lengthwise and sliced crosswise
  • 1/2 large red onion thinly sliced
  • 1 medium green pepper very thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup capers rinsed and drained well
  • about 24 pitted Kalamata olives left whole
  • 1/2 pound really good imported Feta sliced into 3 1/2 inch slabs

Layer all ingredients and top with slabs of Feta.  Dress the salad with a mixture of EXTRA virgin olive oil and red wine vinegar.  Sprinkle lightly with oregano, salt and freshly ground pepper.


Pesto Pasta Salad

From Krisann:

If you are a pesto fan, then this is the salad for you.  This recipe came from my sister Kim, who is a very talented and creative cook.  This salad is sure to be a hit at your next cookout.  I would double this recipe to bring to a party.  Let me know what you think.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb Bowtie pasta
  • 1 small container Grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 red onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 container Small Mozzeralla balls
  • basil 1 bunch, about 2 cups(washed and dried)
  • 3 medium size cloves of garlic
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts or walnuts
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan-reggiano or romano cheese
  • 1/8 cup sugar
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Pesto – Combine the basil in with the pine nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor.  (If you are using walnuts instead of pine nuts and they are not already chopped, pulse them a few times first, before adding the basil).  Add the garlic, pulse a few more times.  Slowly add the olive oil an a constant stream while the food processor is on.  Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula.  Add the grated cheese and sugar and pulse again until blended.  Add the salt and pepper to taste.

This will make 1 cup of pesto.  (Note that pesto is always made to taste, based on the ingredients at hand. So adjust the ingredients to your taste. Most pesto recipes call for Parmesan cheese, you can use Romano which has a stronger flavor).

Then, cook pasta and drain, rinse with cold water.  In a large bowl, add the pasta and mix with the pesto.  (You will need to add some olive oil, but go easy you don’t want to add much.)  Once the pasta and the pesto are nicely mixed, add the grape tomatoes, onions and mozzeralla balls, and blend gently.  Salt and pepper to taste.   Garnish with some sprigs of fresh basil.

HEAT OF THE SUMMER POTATO SALAD RECIPE

From a tiny BEACH kitchen: 

No mayo? No egg?  Are you SURE this is potato salad?  Well, it is not your great aunt’s, or even your grandmother’s potato salad you remember seeing every cookout in the tupperware container.    My Heat of the Summer Potato Salad is quite delightful in it’s own summery way.   Did someone say SUMMER ?  No, I didn’t think so.  South of Boston, Massachusetts, it has been raining for 40 days/nights.   I swore I saw the Ark leading the boats into the fog this morning.      Ok. Ok. Ok, so I just woke up and swore.  Anyhoo…. the point is you won’t have to worry about the mayo & eggs on a hot day.  There are none.

We’re having a Salad Contest over at the GHYC on Sunday.  This will be my entry.  It’s quite a competitive club (wink).  You know-bragging rights among foodies is not to be taking lightly.  Great men have battled over less.  The club front runner? Rita! My money’s on her to be the one to beat.  Any takers? ( Watch for Peaches’ post coming soon under salads.)  No rules to this contest  other than you want to be able to put your “salad” on a plate with a hot dog or hamburger.  Simple.  With Memorial Day coming soon, you can easily double this recipe for a crowd.

Ingredients (serves 8):

  • 2 lbs red potatoes, scrubbed and halved
  • 1/2 pound bacon, crisp, and chopped
  • 1/2 cup shallots (or scallions, if you prefer)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup red onion
  • 1/2 cup celery
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

Place the potatoes and 2 tablespoons of salt in a large pot of water covering potatoes.  Bring the water to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, until the potatoes are barely tender when pierced with a knife.  Drain the potatoes in a colander, then place the colander with the potatoes over the empty pot and cover with a clean, dry kitchen towel.   Allow the potatoes to steam for 15 to 20 minutes.  Cut into bite sized pieces.

Fry the bacon til crisp, chop into pieces and reserve some bacon fat.  Saute the scallions in a tbsp of the bacon fat, very slowly, till soft.  Pour the scallions over the hot potatoes with the hot oil.  

Add 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup red wine vinegar and the chopped parsley, onion, celery and crumbled bacon.  

Toss very gently but thoroughly.  Salt and pepper to taste.

  Serve at room temperature.  Cover and refridgerate leftovers.

~SHERYL

LOVELY ORZO SALAD WITH SPICY BUTTERMILK DRESSING RECIPE

From a tiny BEACH kitchen:

This salad is made with orzo,  a type of pasta shaped like a grain of rice, and is kicked up a notch with a touch of chili powder and fresh lime juice.  You can use it as a side dish but it is substantial enough to call dinner.  A cut up avocado served on the side rounds out the meal.  Meant to impress.    Bring to a party and listen to the Ooohs and Ahhhhs. 

Ingredients:

      • 1 cup uncooked orzo
      • 1 cup frozen, whole-kernel corn, thawed and drained
      • 12 cherry or 24 grape tomatoes, quartered
      • 3 green onions, sliced
      • 1 (15 oz. ) can black beans, rinced and drained
    • Dressing:
      • 1/4 cup low-fat buttermilk
      • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
      • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
      • 2 tablespoons light sour cream
      • 2 tablespoons light mayonaise
      • 1 teaspoon chili powder
      • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
      • 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
      • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
      • 2 cloves minced garlic
    • Optional:
      • 1 avocado, (diced to serve alongside orzo)

Cook orzo according to package directions (Do not add salt).  Rinse orzo. Drain well.

Combine orzo, tomatoes, corn, green onions and black beans in a large bowl.  Toss.

Whisk remaining ingredients in small bowl to make the dressing.  However, do not include the avocado.   Pour the dressing over orzo, corn, tomatoes, green onions in the large bowl .

Chop cilantro.  Add 2 TBSP to large bowl.  Reserve a tablespoon to sprinkle on top of individual plates.

Dice Avocado to serve alongside the orzo salad.

Note:   Can you see the slices made into the avocado pictured below?  Just a few slices in each direction with a sharp knife makes it simple to scoop out the squares of the avocado with a spoon. 

I have heard chefs say to chill your salad plates before serving.  Who can remember? 

Let me know if you added any other types of vegetables to the orzo and how you liked it? ~Sheryl 

Adapted from Cooking Light, May 2011

 

%d bloggers like this: