*Fresh* Southwestern Salad

photo-546Since moving out West 5 years ago I have been a huge fan of southwestern flavors and cuisine! Taco Tuesday is, obviously, my favorite day of the week… I mean who doesn’t love tacos, Tuesday and delicious food. Well for this taco Tuesday I thought I would bring you my favorite new and super fresh, homemade southwestern ‘taco’ salad.

This is the perfect week night side, it’s so fast and easy and the added bonus, everything is homemade! Everyone will think you slaved away for hours on fresh tortilla strips and taco ranch vinaigrette! As you can see above I used freshly grated Parmesan cheese, which makes all the difference!

The taco ranch vinaigrette is my grandmother’s secret recipe, so I can’t actually tell you what’s in it but any kind of southwestern dressing will do. The tortilla strips are best when you sprinkle them over the salad fresh out of the oven like I did above!

Toss everything together and garnish with a dollop of organic sour cream! Season to taste with freshly ground pepper and enjoy!!

**April Fools!**

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Edamame & Kale Salad with Ginger Soy Dressing

photo-516First off I just have to start this post with… this is my 100th blog post! Woohoo! Thank you to everyone that has followed along on my cooking journey! Have you ever had one of those moments or weekends that leaves you promising yourself Monday morning you’re going to start to eat better or healthier? Yeah, I had one of those moments on Sunday halfway through an apres drink and massive cheese burger…sorry I’m not sorry, it was delicious. Everything in moderation right? But a heavy meal like that doesn’t make me feel like I want to get out and be active. It actually makes me want to take a nap.

This edamame and kale salad will do the exact opposite… it’s a power packed, energy boosting, superfood salad that will give you a kick in the butt to get moving! There is so much nutrients and vitamins you’ll have more energy than you know what to do with! The best part about this salad? It makes enough for a few meals! I made a big bowl and have eaten it for lunch the last three days!

Did I mention the ginger soy dressing on the salad? Tangy, sweet, and salty it’s so so good and there’s enough dressing to save for later! Each day I throw a little extra goodie on top like, chicken, tuna or ham for some added protein and feta cheese or mozzarella just because cheese is freaking delicious (and its my weakness!) So grab every veggie you have in your fridge, chop it up and toss it with this bomb.com ginger soy dressing and get ready for some energy packed feel-good-food!

Ingredients (Serves 6-8): 

  • 1 large bunch of kale, ribs removed and chopped (8-10 large leaves)
  • 1/2 a small red cabbage, chopped
  • 1/2 a small red onion, diced
  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into rounds
  • 4 celery stalks, sliced into half moons
  • 1 medium English cucumber, cubed/diced
  • 1 15oz can whole sweet corn kernels, drained and rinsed
  • 1 bag (8-10oz) shelled edamame beans (frozen) thawed according to the directions on the bag
  • Toppings you love like feta cheese, fresh mozzarella, sliced turkey, grilled chicken, salmon- get creative!

Ginger-Soy Dressing

  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt & pepper

Directions:

  1. Whisk the salad dressing ingredients together in a medium bowl. I used a food processor/ blender for a smoother texture but a whisk would work fine. set aside
  2. Chop all the veggies and mix them together in a large bowl, top with corn and edamame, toss to combine. Depending on your taste you can add more or take away some of the vegetables. I would have added red pepper to the salad if I had it on hand but add what you like and make it your salad!
  3. Drizzle half the ginger soy dressing over the salad and toss. Add more dressing until the salad is coated with desired amount of dressing. If you want to to keep salad for the next day, divide the salad before you dress it. Cover the undressed salad with saran wrap and reserve for the next day! Enjoy!

Watermelon, Feta and Mint Skewers

IMG_8156Happy June! Now that Memorial Day has past we have officially entered BBQ season and I am legally allowed to wear white pants again! It also means… wedding season! If you’re looking for something on the lighter side to enjoy at your next barbecue or dinner – this recipe is for you! The salty/sweet combination with refreshing mint and lime makes for the perfect side dish and the presentation on the skewers makes it look like you spent a lot of time preparing it… so don’t be surprised when people start calling you “Martha.” IMG_8152You could toss these ingredients together in a bowl if you don’t have wooden skewers but its nice being able to pick one up without needing a plate! These are so light and refreshing on a hot day- they’ll be the first to go at your next beach picnic or party!

What you’ll need:

  • Half a watermelon, rind removed and cut into 1″ cubes
  • 1 block of Feta cheese cut into 1/4″ slices/cubes large enough that they won’t crumble when skewering them
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Fresh mint, cut into chiffonade (thin strips- I use a pair of scissors to do this or follow this “how to” guide)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil

What to do:

  1. Place one cube of watermelon and one slice of feta on the skewer. You can get about 4 of each on depending on the size of your skewers.
  2. Drizzle the lime juice over all the skewers.
  3. Season lightly with salt and fresh cracked pepper (about 1- 1 1/2 teaspoons of each)
  4. Drizzle Olive Oil (2-3 tablespoons) over the skewers and finish by sprinkling fresh mint pieces over the top.
  5. Serve and Enjoy! IMG_8154If you’d prefer to serve this salad in a bowl you can used crumbed feta instead of block feta. Toss watermelon, lime, olive oil, mint, salt and pepper together in a bowl, sprinkle with feta cheese and serve. If making ahead of time leave feta off until you are ready to serve or it will get soggy sitting in the bowl.