Quinoa Salad


This recipe is so easy and delicious and it would be perfect for a potluck or a party because it makes a big salad.  I left out the red bell peppers because I’m not a fan of them raw and I made a few other adjustments.  The vinaigrette is perfect for the salad.  I was a little leary of the maple syrup but it works.  You can always use your favorite vinaigrette or even a bottled one.

I found both recipes on food.com/formerly Recipezaar posted by magpie diner.

Quinoa Salad

1/2 cup peas, fresh or frozen (I used frozen and did not cook them)
3 cups cooked quinoa
1 cup red bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup green onions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup cucumber, diced (I used 1/2 of a cucumber)
3 tbsps chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp sea salt

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt
black pepper, to taste
1 1/2 tbsps real maple syrup, do not use pancake topping only real maple syrup
5 tbsps olive oil

In a large bowl, combine all of the salad ingredients and toss to combine. If serving immediately, add about 1/2 cup dressing and serve. If not serving immediately, put salad and dressing in refrigerator separately and add the dressing just before serving. The quinoa will soak up quite a bit of dressing so you may need to keep adding a bit.

Using a stick blender or a small food processor, mix everything except for the oil. With blender running, slowly add the oil in a steady stream.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Happy Cooking!

Summer Salad

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This is such an easy salad and dressing to put together that you can really do it at the last minute.  I find that the pimientos don’t really add anything spectacular to the salad so feel free to leave them out if you don’t like them or don’t have any. This makes a large salad so feel free to cut it down to make a smaller one.

The dressing makes much more than you will need to dress this salad so either make half or less or save the rest for another salad later in the week.  It should last in the fridge for at least a week.

Summer Salad

1 1/3 cups canola oil
1 cup red wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper, to taste

2 bunches romaine, roughly chopped
1 bunch red or green lettuce, roughly chopped
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced, then halved
1 (4 ounce) jar diced pimientos, drained
2/3 cup freshly shredded Parmesan cheese

Combine all dressing ingredients and whisk until well combined. Set aside. You can make earlier in the day and store in the refrigerator. Whisk well before dressing salad.

In a large salad bowl, combine all the salad ingredients except the cheese. Dress the salad with the dressing and then sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Toss to coat all salad ingredients with the dressing. The salad may be make ahead up to adding the cheese and dressing and stored in the refrigerator. Just before serving, add the dressing and cheese.

Makes 10-12 servings.

Happy Cooking!

Strawberry Spinach Salad


This is one of my very favorite recipes ever and I love it when strawberry season arrives.  I made this salad in the picture with raspberry balsamic vinegar instead of just plain raspberry vinegar.  I like them both but it looks prettier with just the plain raspberry vinegar.  I never add the sliced almonds ~ just personal preference.  I first found this recipe in a junior league cookbook (Very Virginia, I think) but have since seen it all over the internet.


    Spinach Strawberry Salad

    1/3 cup raspberry vinegar
    1/2 cup sugar
    1 teaspoon dry mustard
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons onions, grated
    1 cup canola oil or vegetable oil
    1 1/2 teaspoons poppy seeds

    10 ounces fresh spinach, washed and torn
    1 pint fresh strawberries, washed, capped, sliced
    1/2 cup almonds, sliced, lightly toasted

    In a blender or with a stick blender, combine vinegar and next 4 ingredients. Process until blended. With blender running, add oil in a slow, steady stream. Stir in poppy seeds. (Dressing may be stored in refrigerator up to 1 month).

    Just before serving, combine spinach, strawberries, and almonds in a large bowl.

    Toss with desired amount of dressing.

    Makes 6 servings

Happy Cooking!


Green Salad with Fruit, Sugared Almonds and Orange Vinaigrette


I really like fruit in my salad and when I came across this recipe I knew I would have to try it. I think you could leave out the almonds if you wanted and the salad would still be delicious. This recipe is perfect for a warm summer day.

I used whole almonds because that is what I had and it worked fine. I also used bagged salad greens because the heads of lettuce did not look very good at the store I went to.

Salad with Sugared Almonds and Orange Vinaigrette

1 egg white
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup sliced almonds
2 tbsps melted butter
Preheat oven to 325º. Beat egg white at high speed in a mixing bowl until foamy. Add sugar, 1 tbsp. at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Fold in almonds. Spread mixture in 9×9 pan with the melted butter. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until nuts are dry, stirring every 5 to 10 minutes. Cool completely.

Orange Vinaigrette:
3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tbsp. orange juice
1 tsp. grated orange rind
1/2 tsp poppy seeds
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper

1 head Bibb lettuce, torn
1 head leaf letttuce, trn
1 (11 ounce) can mandarin oranges, drained
10 fresh strawberries, thinly sliced
1 green onion, chopped

Combine lettuces, oranges, strawberries, and green onion in a salad bowl.

Whisk all vinaigrette ingredients together in a bowl until smooth and well combined.

Add almonds and vinaigrette to salad and toss gently to coat all salad ingredients well.

Makes 6 servings.

Happy Cooking!

Trip to the Farm Stands, Hot Weather Meal Idea and My Mom’s Salad Dressing


We made our first trip to the farm stands out in Pungo today and we weren’t disappointed. Here are some pics of my haul:

I will be making peach muffins later today with some of the peaches. I am going to freeze the blackberries and strawberries. At some point this week, we’ll have the potatoes, probably roasted with herbs. The rest I will use up this week for our meals. Next week I will buy a half bushel of peaches to cut up and freeze. The sweet corn should be ready in another week or so ~ can’t wait for that. We’ll probably go just about every Saturday or Sunday to supplement our vegetable garden and to buy bigger quantities to put up for the winter.

It’s really hot today so I made a Chef’s salad for lunch. It’s easy to make, no recipe, and you can use whatever you like in your salads. I keep all the veggies separate since we all like different things in our salads.

Salad with Meat and Cheese:

Veggies to add to salad:

I also put out sliced hard boiled eggs, croutons and real bacon bits. None of us can agree on a salad dressing so everyone uses their favorite.

My Mom’s Quick Salad Dressing

2 tbsp mayonnaise
2 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp oil (vegetable, canola, olive, use your favorite) I like canola in this recipe
2 tbsp red wine vinegar

Whisk all together and store in refrigerator until ready to serve. Pour over salad and toss.

This dressing is not low calorie but it really hits the spot every once in awhile.

Happy Cooking!