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Funky Salad Recipe??

flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 05:32 AM

Ok, so I have a few tried and true recipes for salads that I make for dinner parties..I'm tired of them and need a new one to try...Anything new and funky? Help me get a new twist on in the kitchen...Please share your recipes. I'm tired on mandarin orange salad recipes and recipes with blue cheese and candied nuts..What else is out there??? Do tell and share.

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  1. MMRuth RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 05:33 AM

    I really like shaved fennel salads - with oranges and walnuts, some olive oil and lemon juice. Or with parmesan cheese.

    8 Replies
    1. re: MMRuth
      relizabeth RE: MMRuth Mar 22, 2007 09:49 AM

      I too am all about the shaved fennel salad. I make mine with grapefruit and toasted hazelnuts, and dress it with grapefruit juice and olive oil and salt and pepper.

      1. re: relizabeth
        flipkeat RE: relizabeth Mar 22, 2007 01:47 PM

        I didn't used to enjoy fennel..but I do now...That does sound good...grapefruit huh? I would never have thought of that combination..love it. Thanks..Think using hazelnut oil would be too much? Hmm just a thought.

        1. re: flipkeat
          debbiel RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 04:40 PM

          We just had a grapefruit and fennel salad with dinner tonight. It's such a nice, refreshing, light salad. I'll have to try adding the hazelnuts next time; I've not done that before.

          1. re: flipkeat
            MMRuth RE: flipkeat Mar 25, 2007 06:53 PM

            I made a fennel and blood orange salad last night -with walnuts, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper - v. tasty, though I had not thought about the fact that the oranges would turn the fennel a slightly off-putting purple color.

            1. re: MMRuth
              lollya RE: MMRuth Mar 26, 2007 08:38 AM

              Hey all of you above in the fennel discussion - i'm excited to try this out...any tips? do i slice them thin - I see above you guys shave them - how? A recipe would probably be a good route, I'm gonna go search, but if anyone has one handy!

              1. re: lollya
                debbiel RE: lollya Mar 26, 2007 08:56 AM

                I actually just slice my fennel and it seems to work out nicely and holds up well for leftovers. Here are a couple of paraphrased recipes:

                From Veg Cooking for Everyone:
                3 navel or blood oranges
                Orange Vinaigrette
                1 head butter or Boston lettuce
                2 Tb chopped fennel greens
                10 small mint leaves, thinly sliced
                1 small fennel bulb, quartered and thinly sliced
                12 oil-cured black olives

                section the oranges (reserve juice for vinaigrette). Toss lettuce (whole or torn leaves) w 2 to 3 Tb dressing and half of the fennel greens and sliced mint. Arrange on plates. Toss oranges, sliced fennel, and remaining herbs in dressing. Arrange on the lettuce. Garnish with olives. The orange vinaigrette is 1 tsp orange zest (grated or minced), 1/2 c. orange juice, 2 tsp white wine vinegar (I actually use rice vinegar because that's what I keep on hand), 3 Tb light olive oil or sunflower oil, 1 Tb evoo, 1 tsp orange flower water optional. Pepper and salt to taste.

                From Simple Italian Food:
                2 large fennel bulbs, trimmed
                juice of 1 lemon
                4 Tb evoo
                4 large blood oranges peeled and segmented
                1 cup fresh pomegranate seeds
                6 ounces hard pecorino

                Use mandolin or sharp knife and slice fennel as thinly as possible. Toss with olive oil and lemon juice. Add the orange segments and pomegranate seeds. Salt and pepper to taste. Arrange on plates and shave pecorino over the top.

                I have some blood oranges to use up, so I'm either going to run out and get more fennel for dinner tonight, or make margaritas.

                1. re: lollya
                  MMRuth RE: lollya Mar 26, 2007 02:41 PM

                  I use my knife, and just slice as thinly as possible - seems to work fine.

          2. re: MMRuth
            another_adam RE: MMRuth Mar 27, 2007 10:30 AM

            I love fennel salads too (and these variations sound great) but not everyone does. (My partner hates fennel and it seems like 4 dinner parties out of 5 serve fennel salad these days!!!)

            Another epicurious favorite that can practically be a main course in hot summer weather: shrimp salad with zucchini and basil: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...
            It's a more vegetable-laden adaptation of a classic Italian favorite (shrimp + zucchini). You need really nice fresh shrimp, I always try to splurge and get whole foods seafood for this one.

          3. King of Northern Blvd RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 05:50 AM

            A fattoush is a favorite of mine. I like to make it with grilled pita in the summer. Ingredients are variable as to whats available.

            1. Katie Nell RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 06:12 AM

              This is a main dish salad, but was very good, Southwestern Grilled Beef Salad with Corn Salsa and Chipotle Dressing: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...

              Green Bean and Radicchio Salad with Roasted Beets and Balsamic Red Onions was fantastic- love the vinaigrette on this one: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...

              There are two recipes from the Junior League Colorado Cache cookbook that I've used a ton... unfortunately, this book is in my mom's possession, so I don't have the recipes right now. One of them is a green bean salad with walnuts and a dill vinaigrette. The recipe calls for an unusual way of cooking the beans that I like very much. Of course, now I can't remember the details! The other one is a spinach salad with grapes, matchsticks of swiss and cheddar cheese- the mustardy vinaigrette really makes this one. If either of these spark your interest, I could see if I could get the recipes.

              Oh yeah, this Buffalo Chicken Salad recipe is also very good, and low fat!! http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/cda/r... Sorry if you weren't looking for main dish salads- I got on a roll!

              3 Replies
              1. re: Katie Nell
                nojunk RE: Katie Nell Mar 24, 2007 08:34 AM

                If it's the same Colorado Cache cookbook that I'm thinking of, there's also a unique potato salad recipe - Prospector Potato Salad - that uses cucumber for crunch & the dressing is a combo of sour cream and mayo. I haven't made it for a long time (will correct that soon!), but it is very delicious and a little lighter than most potato salads.

                1. re: nojunk
                  lollya RE: nojunk Mar 26, 2007 08:39 AM

                  That sounds DIVINE!

                  1. re: nojunk
                    chef chicklet RE: nojunk Mar 27, 2007 11:01 AM

                    yes I have the same book, there are many good recipes, and that is one of them. Now I will try it too!

                2. a
                  ali patts RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 06:17 AM

                  Jamie Oliver does a good mozzarella, peach, prosciutto and mint salad (with some leaves of course) I think it's in his first book but you get the general idea - lemon vinagrette.
                  Also, from one of the Donna Hay books, leaves, shaved parmesan, roasted tomatoes and baked prosciutto (it goes all crispy - but do oil the pan!)
                  Both delicious, both fancy enough for dinner parties.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: ali patts
                    flipkeat RE: ali patts Mar 22, 2007 01:49 PM

                    the Donna Hay one really appeals to me..Thanks..I like the sounds of that..I don't have any Donna Hay cookbooks..perhaps I should google that recipe? I'll check it out..though..thanks

                  2. d
                    DGresh RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 06:24 AM

                    How about roasted beets? I like them with feta, or goat cheese, mixed with watercress. They are also good with oranges. If you can find fancy striped or yellow beets, even better. But I love the color contrast of beets with the white cheese and green watercress.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: DGresh
                      jenjunum RE: DGresh Mar 23, 2007 11:02 PM

                      I was going to suggest adding roasted beets as well. Especially the cool heirloom varietals. Lots of interesting colors. Nice combination with orange supremes or even blood oranges.

                    2. v
                      valerie RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 06:35 AM

                      I haven't actually made this myself, but I saw this Sushi Roll Rice Salad recommended on the "best Epicurious recipes" thread and it sounds great...


                      2 Replies
                      1. re: valerie
                        ballulah RE: valerie Mar 22, 2007 09:52 AM

                        That's so funny, I saved that recipe to my Recipe Box to try as well!

                        1. re: valerie
                          coconutz RE: valerie Mar 22, 2007 02:09 PM

                          I have made this and it is great. You will blow people away.

                        2. b
                          Biggie RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 07:18 AM

                          My girlfriend has been making a simple salad w/ chopped romaine, quartered strawberries, shaved parmesan, and Marie's poppyseed dressing.

                          I also made a salad the other day that went over well - mixed greens w/ chopped shrimp, calamari and diced cucumber, dressed with a simple mixture of fresh lime juice and honey. It might also be nice to mix some chopped chiles into the dressing as well.

                          1. Marge RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 07:22 AM

                            Nigella's watermelon, feta and olive salad might be called funky, but it is definitely delicious!

                            1. h
                              howchow RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 07:27 AM

                              How about an herb salad - whatever type of sald greens you prefer and include a large selection of chopped fresh herbs - basil, mint, dill, parsley - it is a flavor explosion - I also like to add some parmasian croutons made from croissants - they have a very delicate texture - simply dressed - 1 part olive oil - 1 part vinegar - a diced shallot and pinch of salt. You could also add some sunflower or pumpkin seeds.

                              1. chowser RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 08:31 AM

                                BLT salad:


                                Tuscan tomato salad (kind of like a caprese salad w/ bread):


                                3 Replies
                                1. re: chowser
                                  Katie Nell RE: chowser Mar 22, 2007 09:02 AM

                                  That reminds me of panzanella- possibly my favorite kind of salad! I love all of Michael Chiarello's versions:

                                  Autumn: http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/cda/r...

                                  Winter: http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/cda/r...

                                  Pea (Spring): http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/recip...

                                  Hierloom Tomato (Summer): http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/recip...

                                  1. re: Katie Nell
                                    ScarletB RE: Katie Nell Mar 27, 2007 09:56 AM

                                    I just went a saved each of those panzanellas. I love a good panzanella when tomatoes are in season, so the other ones are just genius! Thanks.

                                    1. re: ScarletB
                                      Katie Nell RE: ScarletB Mar 27, 2007 10:05 AM

                                      My favorite one is the Autumn one- I love everything in it!

                                2. o
                                  Oh Robin RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 08:58 AM

                                  I love a waldorf. Granny smith apples, celery, walnuts, fresh whipped cream, a little fresh squeezed orange juice. Very refreshing.

                                  Also love the classic caprese. Fresh mozzarella, roma tomato, fresh basil, a little olive oil and salt and pepper. Always a hit.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: Oh Robin
                                    flipkeat RE: Oh Robin Mar 22, 2007 01:43 PM

                                    I love the waldorf too..However, I could make a meal of just that...I needed a lighter type though..and I agree you can't go wrong with a Caprese Salad either..I have tomato based dishes on the dinner menu already...but thanks ..I don't use fresh whipped cream in my waldorf..Next time I will do that..Mmm sounds good. with the oj..Yummy!!

                                    1. re: Oh Robin
                                      chef chicklet RE: Oh Robin Mar 27, 2007 05:09 PM

                                      oh Robin, have you ever poured balsamic along with your ingredients? My husband asks for this always...and red pepper flakes

                                    2. l
                                      Louise RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 09:19 AM

                                      There's an unusual one with an Indian twist, with thinly sliced cucumbers (the narrow pointy ended kind that comes in plastic), shaved fresh(!) coconut, and a dressing of lime juice. It's in Martha Stewart's big square yellow cookbook the name of which escapes me.

                                      Second the beets suggestion. For them to be extra sweet, bake them. Get them all about the same size, preferably no larger than a tangerine, put in a casserole and drizzle with a little oil. Cover with foil and bake ~350 for 30-45 minutes til you can poke them with a knife. Let cool and you will be able to rub the skins off. Then cut into small wedges and dress as desired. Fair warning: wear some of those diswashing gloves while peeling, or you'll wind up looking like Lizzie Borden.

                                      Also I've read about, but never made, a salad of thinly sliced fresh white mushrooms and slivers of good parmesan. Dressed with lemon juice and olive oil. You'd need to make this at the last moment, don't think it would would be nice after much sitting.

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: Louise
                                        flipkeat RE: Louise Mar 22, 2007 01:41 PM

                                        I don't have Martha's big square yellow cookbook...lol...But that does sound interesting..If you have the time perhaps later on..Could you please paraphrase the ingredients for me? Thank you very much.
                                        I do love a beet salad as well..Mmm Ina Garten's recipe is wonderful..I've made that one many times before.

                                        1. re: flipkeat
                                          Louise RE: flipkeat Mar 25, 2007 06:42 PM

                                          1 1/2 c dry roasted peanuts
                                          1 unwaxed seedless cucumber, unpeeled, 1/4" slices
                                          1 small coconut, discard shell & meat
                                          3 T oil
                                          1 1/2 T black mustard seeds
                                          1/4 c fresh lime juice
                                          1/2 c fresh cilantro leaves

                                          Toast peanuts in pan til very dark, cool and rough chop.
                                          Mix nuts with cucumber, salt to taste, set aside.
                                          With a vegetable peeler, remove the thin brown skin from the chunks of coconut meat. Grate on box grater's medium holes, should be about 1 cup. Add to cucumber mixture.
                                          Heat oil til very hot in small pan, add seeds and heat til they start to pop.
                                          Pour oil and seeds over salad mixture, toss, add lime juice and cilantro, toss, salt to taste.


                                          1. re: Louise
                                            flipkeat RE: Louise Mar 26, 2007 11:23 AM

                                            Thank you Louise...I've got it now..Sounds wonderful..Thanks again.

                                      2. ballulah RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 09:58 AM

                                        I'm not a big fan of Bobby Flay's Mesa Grill, but I love the chopped salad he makes there and often reproduce at home. Chopped romaine, quartered grape tomatoes, diced cucumber, chick peas, fine fine diced cheddar and jack, tossed in a spicy balsamic vinaigrette (I ususally throw a serrano and a splash of sriricha sauce into the blender when I make my usual balsamic vinaigrette).

                                        I also like mesclun greens with slivers of fresh juicy pear, Maytag blue cheese (I know you asked for no blue cheese, sorry! The pears put this out of the ballpark!), and toasted (not candied!) hazelnuts. The vinaigrette I make for this uses shallots, sherry vinegar and some heavy cream.

                                        4 Replies
                                        1. re: ballulah
                                          tomself RE: ballulah Mar 27, 2007 10:23 AM

                                          Any chance you could share your spicy balsamic vinaigrette recipe? I like spicy foods and that sounds really good. Thanks.

                                          1. re: tomself
                                            ballulah RE: tomself Mar 27, 2007 10:54 AM

                                            It's pretty basic, and it's not really a recipe, I eyeball everything and constantly taste until it's right...it also varies by what I have at hand to put in. I just started using a blender to improve the emulsification, and now the vinaigrette rarely separates.

                                            Olive oil
                                            Balsamic vinegar
                                            Maybe a little OJ or a little honey, if the balsamic is very acidic/bright
                                            Fresh garlic clove
                                            Spicy mustard, I like Creole, dijon in a pinch
                                            Serrano pepper (adjust how much by how hot the pepper or how much dressing you're making - I used a whole very hot serrano for half a quart of dressing)
                                            Splash of sriricha sauce
                                            Salt & pepper

                                            ...and I've found that the secret to mellowing out the flavors in a vinaigrette is a splash (literally) of water.

                                            Zip it in a blender for a bit, and that's it.

                                            1. re: ballulah
                                              tomself RE: ballulah Mar 28, 2007 03:13 PM

                                              Thanks. I come from the eyeball school of cooking too!

                                              1. re: ballulah
                                                tomself RE: ballulah Sep 5, 2007 11:37 AM

                                                I've been meaning to send you a note about this recipe. Gave it a whirl and it was a big hit. Unfortunately, I had to use canned serrano. Added two since they weren't as hot as fresh. Very good though. Thanks.

                                          2. f
                                            flipkeat RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 01:39 PM

                                            Ohhhhhhhh lovely ideas everyone..Thank you for your input. I really like the idea of the Herb Salad..Mmm so many perhaps I will combine a few of these ideas and create a new salad..I will report back..love the new ideas..Thanks for the help!!

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: flipkeat
                                              Oh Robin RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 01:46 PM

                                              Cucumber with red onion and feta is good too. A little olive oil and cracked pepper on top, very simple and good.

                                              1. re: flipkeat
                                                MzMaggie RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 01:48 PM

                                                How about a Greek salad with chopped bell peppers, red onion, cucumber, tomatoes and topped with Feta Cheese and Kalamata Olives. Make an easy vinaigrette with lemon juice and olive oil.

                                              2. s
                                                sweetpotater RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 02:28 PM

                                                I do a tomato salad in a bread bowl that's always a big hit, and a change of pace, especially because it contains no lettuce. Wait till tomatoes are in season, though. Chunks of tomato, cuke, thin red onion slices, black olive, basil leaves tossed with a simple red wine vinaigrette, SP and croutons made from hollowing out a round loaf of bread. Serve the salad in the bowl.

                                                1. orangewasabi RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 02:45 PM

                                                  This is my favourite go-to salad and it becomes everyone's favourite salad who tries it


                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: orangewasabi
                                                    flipkeat RE: orangewasabi Mar 23, 2007 05:04 AM

                                                    Thanks orange...I just noticed there is only 1 tsp. of sesame oil in the dressing as well..Not very much oil for the entire recipe..WOW..That does sound good..Thanks so much!!

                                                  2. p
                                                    piccola RE: flipkeat Mar 22, 2007 09:32 PM

                                                    Roasted carrot salad - with cumin, coriander, orange zest and black olives. Sometimes some crumbled cheese too.

                                                    Raw zucchini ribbons with lemon vinaigrette and tarragon or mint. Maybe a few toasted pinenuts.

                                                    Brussels sprouts slaw. You shred 'em and toss 'em with a nice sesame-ginger dressing. Or something really garlicky.

                                                    1. m
                                                      martmurt RE: flipkeat Mar 23, 2007 06:28 AM

                                                      This is a prepare ahead salad. I serve it on a big Romaine lettuce leaf with some of the marinade poured over all. Some bread along side to soak up the juices is good, too.
                                                      Cucumber Mushroom Salad

                                                      2 large cucumbers
                                                      10 medium mushrooms, sliced
                                                      4 scallion, chopped, including tops
                                                      1/2 cup parsley chopped
                                                      3 tomatoes, thinly sliced.

                                                      2/3 cup olive oil
                                                      1/2 cup vinegar, your choice
                                                      1 tsp salt
                                                      1/2 teaspoon pepper
                                                      2 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil leaves.

                                                      Prepare the dressing in a large bowl. Add the chopped vegetables and gently mix. Chill for at least 1 hour, but all day doesn't hurt.
                                                      Use a slotted spoon to transfer the marinated vegetables onto large lettuce leaf, or a bed of greens. Spoon some dressing over everything. Any kind of cheese scattered over the top is a nice accompaniment.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: martmurt
                                                        flipkeat RE: martmurt Mar 23, 2007 06:31 PM

                                                        Thanks ...sounds yummy..;)

                                                      2. j
                                                        JIRodriguez RE: flipkeat Mar 23, 2007 03:39 PM

                                                        Was at Costco the other day and they sampled a great easy salad:

                                                        1 bag salad mix (iceberg or romain work best)
                                                        1 cup chopped toasted walnuts (pecans or almonds if you are allergic to walnuts)
                                                        1 cup dried cranberries
                                                        Blue cheese dressing of choice (or make you own)
                                                        A little extra blue cheese for garnish

                                                        Gently mix everything exept the garnish in a large bowl - this is why I like the iceberg or romain, they hold up to the mixing without getting bruised and battered. You want enough dressing to coat everthing. Serve and enjoy!!

                                                        1. d
                                                          ducky RE: flipkeat Mar 23, 2007 03:50 PM

                                                          Here's a deceptively simple, delicious salad: shredded zucchini with toasted almonds and shaved pecorino cheese. Doesn't sound like much but it has people swooning.

                                                          8 Replies
                                                          1. re: ducky
                                                            flipkeat RE: ducky Mar 23, 2007 06:32 PM

                                                            Sounds good..any dressing??? Perhaps light just oil & vinegar??

                                                            1. re: flipkeat
                                                              ducky RE: flipkeat Mar 24, 2007 02:16 PM

                                                              Actually, no. You the richness of the cheese and the almonds are all you need.

                                                            2. re: ducky
                                                              ScarletB RE: ducky Mar 26, 2007 04:00 PM

                                                              Is the zucchini raw or do you do a quick blanche or saute? Sounds good and healthy.

                                                              1. re: ScarletB
                                                                ducky RE: ScarletB Mar 26, 2007 05:51 PM


                                                                It's raw. Deceptively simple and absolutely delicious.

                                                                1. re: ducky
                                                                  ScarletB RE: ducky Mar 27, 2007 11:37 AM

                                                                  Thanks! I happen to have shredded zucchini in my fridge right now, as leftover from a batch of zuke bread this past weekend. I might have to try that tonight.

                                                                  1. re: ducky
                                                                    ScarletB RE: ducky Mar 28, 2007 02:10 PM

                                                                    Hi Ducky,
                                                                    Just wanted to thank you for a great salad idea. I have a hard time getting all my veggies in and have never considered zucchini a favorite, but I really enjoyed this. Actually, I didn't make your salad suggestion because I really wanted to use the already shredded zucchini in my fridge, but didn't have pecorino or almonds, so I mixed with a bit of goat cheese and toasted walnuts instead. Sorry! But, I never would have thought to eat raw shredded zucchini, so thank you so much for the idea. It was absolutely delicious! I will try your combo next, as here's an easy way to eat vegetables. I think a tiny drizzle of olive oil or a squeeze of lemon might be nice too.
                                                                    Anyway, thanks!
                                                                    PS - Are you the same ducky posting on PF.org? Nice to hear from someone local if so.

                                                                    1. re: ScarletB
                                                                      ducky RE: ScarletB Mar 28, 2007 08:02 PM


                                                                      Glad you liked the idea.Your goat cheese-walnut version sounds good; I'll have to try it.

                                                                      And to follow-up on your other question, I'm not the other ducky.

                                                                      1. re: ducky
                                                                        ScarletB RE: ducky Mar 28, 2007 09:22 PM

                                                                        Thanks ducky!

                                                              2. missmasala RE: flipkeat Mar 23, 2007 05:52 PM

                                                                i just made one tonight--roasted beets, slivered kumquats, shaved fennel, mint tossed with garlic, olive oil and balsamic. don't need much dressing for this. also good are beets and green beans tossed together in a garlic/mustard vinegrette. add some feta or blue cheese if you wish.

                                                                I make the watermelon salad, but leave out the olives and add mint. It's mint, olive oil, lime juice, feta, and watermelon. I find this salad addictive.

                                                                have also heard that you can pair watermelon and tomatoes (perhaps with feta?) into a nice salad. Will try that combo this summer.

                                                                another one that's a big hit is halved grape tomatoes, lemon juice, chopped red onion, chopped peanuts, and cilantro. don't add the salt or the salted peanuts until just before serving. The peanuts and tomatoes go well together.

                                                                i too am curious about the martha stewart salad with cucumber and coconut. i make a lot of indian food/salads but i've never combined those two ingredients. very intriguing!

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: missmasala
                                                                  flipkeat RE: missmasala Mar 23, 2007 06:37 PM

                                                                  Good combos you've got there...I like the watermelon idea...I tried one from the Hammersley cookbook and it was good too..thanks

                                                                2. c
                                                                  cimui RE: flipkeat Mar 23, 2007 06:22 PM

                                                                  I really love these:

                                                                  Ajvar (Roasted Peppers And Eggplant)

                                                                  12 fresh red new mexican chiles
                                                                  4 meduim eggplants
                                                                  3/4 cup olive oil or corn oil
                                                                  1 large onion -- minced
                                                                  3 large garlic cloves -- chopped
                                                                  2 tablespoons lemon juice
                                                                  2 tablespoons red wine
                                                                  salt/pepper to taste
                                                                  parsley for garnish

                                                                  Roast the peppers and eggplant over charcoal or gas flame, or bake in a preheated oven at 475 deg. F until the skins are blistered and black. Place the roasted vegetables in a paper bag and let them steam in their own heat for 10 minutes. Peel off and discard the burnt skins along with the stems and seeds. Mash the pepper and eggplant pulp together to form a homogeneous mass, either smooth or slightly chunky, as desired. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large skillet and saute the onion until very soft. Add the garlic and cook 2 minutes lomger. Remove from heat and stir in the pepper-eggplant pulp, mixing well. Slowly drizzle remaining oil into the mixture, stirring constantly to incorporate all the oil. Add lemon juice and vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with parsley. Serve as an appetizer spread on thick slices of country-style white bread, or flat pita bread, or use as a side dish to accompany grilled or roasted meats.

                                                                  Tomato and Onion Cachumbar

                                                                  ½ cup (125ml) 1/2 "/1 cm diced onion
                                                                  3 tbsp (45ml) fresh lemon juice
                                                                  2 cups (500ml) ½"/1cm dice tomatoes
                                                                  1 ½ tsp (7ml) salt - or to taste
                                                                  3 tbsp (45ml) finely chopped coriander
                                                                  ¼ -½ tsp (1-2 ml) cayenne pepper ( or to taste)

                                                                  Put all ingredients into a bowl and mix well. Makes 4 servings
                                                                  Recipes from Simple Indian Cooking by Madhur Jaffrey, BBC Books

                                                                  I add cucumber and freshly roasted, slightly ground cumin seeds to mine, as well. Very simple and very good.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: cimui
                                                                    flipkeat RE: cimui Mar 23, 2007 06:32 PM

                                                                    Everyone of these ideas has given me new inspiration..Many thanks everyone for your help so far!!

                                                                  2. Emme RE: flipkeat Mar 25, 2007 07:21 PM

                                                                    I'm a persimmon fiend, so I do this but leave the avocado out of mine...
                                                                    green salad mix
                                                                    red wine vinegar dressing
                                                                    avocado, peeled and slice
                                                                    persimmons peeled and chunk
                                                                    jicama, chopped
                                                                    Asian pear, sliced

                                                                    I like pomegranites too, so http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec... this is good too!

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Emme
                                                                      flipkeat RE: Emme Mar 26, 2007 11:28 AM

                                                                      Sounds good..thanks..great ideas..I love persimmons too..Mmmmm

                                                                      1. re: flipkeat
                                                                        Emme RE: flipkeat Mar 26, 2007 06:23 PM

                                                                        I relish persimmon season, and can't for the life of me figure out why people bother peeling these tasty buggers either!

                                                                    2. s
                                                                      shivani RE: flipkeat Mar 26, 2007 01:57 PM

                                                                      Some of my current favorites:

                                                                      Cucumber, radish and avocado with rice wine vinegar, salt, a pinch of sugar and dill. No need for oil, the vinegar breaks down the avocado and adds a little bit of creaminess. So simple but people always ask for the recipe.

                                                                      Beets, grapefruit, and arugula, with balsamic and olive oil. Beets, grapefruit and avocado is also good.

                                                                      Fennel, arugula and ricotta salata with a lemon pepper vinagrette.

                                                                      White beans, butternut squash, red onion and greens.

                                                                      1. c
                                                                        carolle217 RE: flipkeat Mar 26, 2007 02:59 PM

                                                                        SHRIMP & PEA SALAD: 1 pkg frozen peas, thawed not cooked, 1/2# of shrimp, 3/4 cup cashews, Best Foods mayonaise to mix and salt and pepper. Serve on lettuce lined plate.

                                                                        1. i
                                                                          itryalot RE: flipkeat Mar 26, 2007 03:47 PM

                                                                          Frisee with cubed pancetta that has been browned. Add a warm poached egg and light dijon dressing and bread. I've added crumbled frico too.
                                                                          Fennel and blood oranges (love it too) with parm shavings.
                                                                          Mixed baby greens with blackened jumbo shrimp cubed cukes, tomatoes and green onions, blue cheese dressing and toasted walnuts. (It is a meal in itself) .
                                                                          Orzo salad (with roasted diced roasted veggies and lemon basil vinaigrette).

                                                                          1. AmandaEd RE: flipkeat Mar 27, 2007 10:40 AM

                                                                            My favourite all-season salad: oven-roasted slices of yam artfully arranged on the plate around a mound of warm sauteed spinach and garlic with sauteed whole button mushrooms on top, drizzled with a balsamic reduction and topped with goat cheese or crumbled feta cheese. Really easy to make ahead, can be a starter or an entire meal. Absolutely fabulous flavours together!

                                                                            8 Replies
                                                                            1. re: AmandaEd
                                                                              chef chicklet RE: AmandaEd Mar 27, 2007 11:11 AM

                                                                              My own that I came up with about a year ago and I don't see anything like them unless I am blinder than I think I am. Are:
                                                                              Arugula, Artichoke, Avocado in a lemon vinagrette
                                                                              Orzo with Balsamic, Fresh basil, Grape tomatoes, cucumber, pinon and dried bing cherries.
                                                                              and Fresh sauteed corn with black bean, lime juice, red onion, serrano chile and cilantro (this one is very refreshing)
                                                                              Chinese Pasta salad
                                                                              Chinese Chicken Salad
                                                                              Spicy Barbecue Potato Salad with baby red potatoes
                                                                              If you want, I'm happy to share any or all recipes with you

                                                                              1. re: chef chicklet
                                                                                morebubbles RE: chef chicklet Mar 27, 2007 11:18 AM

                                                                                Oh my, they all sound great! I'd love the recipe for the Chinese style salads, the potato salad and artichoke & avocado (which I'll make tonight if I get the recipe-I don't have arugula, will romaine do in a pinch?), thanks cc!

                                                                                1. re: morebubbles
                                                                                  chef chicklet RE: morebubbles Mar 27, 2007 12:01 PM

                                                                                  Yes you can, arugula has a sort of peppery bite to it, but you could and its more tender like butter lettuce leaves. There are mixed salad greens that are of the softer leaf variety, like baby beet leaves that would work too.
                                                                                  I'll post in a few, give me a minute to gather them up!

                                                                                  1. re: morebubbles
                                                                                    chef chicklet RE: morebubbles Mar 27, 2007 02:48 PM

                                                                                    Arugula, artichoke and avocodo with lemon vinagrette

                                                                                    Lemons - juice 2 fresh lemons
                                                                                    1 garlic clove smashed and diced fine
                                                                                    1 haas avocado
                                                                                    1 can or 1 pk of frozen artichoke hearts cut into quarters (cook the frozen according to directions, not the canned - just rinse and drain
                                                                                    pecoromano cheese - a good romano wedge or parmesean will work too
                                                                                    1/3 cup olive oil
                                                                                    salt & pepper
                                                                                    5 cups of arugula rinsed and dried (If using romano, tear into small pieces)
                                                                                    Into a bowl - put the garlic, salt and fresh ground pepper, juice of the lemons, and whisk while pouring the olive oil in
                                                                                    In a large wooden bowl put your greens, and the artichoke hearts, toss the salad with the dressing and then add the avocado, gently toss with the avocade.
                                                                                    Once you've coated all the leaves serve the salad on a cold plate, and peel with a peeler, the romano cheese to the top, add sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.
                                                                                    sevres 3-4 or me alone on a salad day.

                                                                                    1. re: chef chicklet
                                                                                      morebubbles RE: chef chicklet Mar 27, 2007 03:27 PM

                                                                                      Mmm, great! Off to make it, thanks. May use fresh organic spinach leaves instead, it's the only other green leaf I have. In future will use arugula or baby greens as you suggested.

                                                                                      (edited 2 hours later) - Yay, success! This was very very good. My friend and I had 2 huge servings each, we loved it. I made it with spinach leaves: great. Nice refreshing dressing (used half the garlic amount). Good one, cc!

                                                                                      1. re: morebubbles
                                                                                        chef chicklet RE: morebubbles Mar 27, 2007 07:57 PM

                                                                                        Great idea mb, the spinach must of added a great flavor too! I am so glad you two enjoyed it! Easy huh!

                                                                                  2. re: chef chicklet
                                                                                    flipkeat RE: chef chicklet Mar 28, 2007 06:11 AM

                                                                                    Orzo with Balsamic, Fresh basil, Grape tomatoes, cucumber, pinon and dried bing cherries. Sounds wonderful!! Great idea thanks

                                                                                    1. re: flipkeat
                                                                                      morebubbles RE: flipkeat Mar 28, 2007 06:25 AM

                                                                                      Ditto for me, great idea. This one I thought I could maybe figure it out, but a recipe would be So Very Helpful.......!!! Thanks, cc!

                                                                                2. chowser RE: flipkeat Mar 27, 2007 11:36 AM

                                                                                  Oh, this is another one I really like. It's a roasted cauliflower and radicchio salad:


                                                                                  1. CNJFoodie RE: flipkeat Mar 27, 2007 01:37 PM

                                                                                    Have you ever tried adding pomegranate to your salads? It really gives great texture and a neat taste. Definitely something different. I add all sorts of different things to my salads -- roasted or candied nuts/walnuts, starfruits, anything exotic and tasty.

                                                                                    Go to Delicious Orchards or a great produce place and just walk down the aisles and see what you can find....especially different colored fruits, nuts, etc. Have fun! It's a salad.

                                                                                    1. j
                                                                                      jackie de RE: flipkeat Mar 27, 2007 05:35 PM

                                                                                      These are such great suggestions. I think you can do so many dif. salads, if you just remember to do these few things--- A great fresh green of some sort, a fruit, a nut, an other vegie, a cheese, sometimes a bread product and a great dressing. The possibilities are endless and can vary from season to season. Also, try to hand toss the salad with dressing (just a little) and you'll be amazed at the difference it makes instead of just plopping the dressing on the salad. Be sure to season your salad with s and p as well. Makes a huge difference.

                                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                                      1. re: jackie de
                                                                                        chef chicklet RE: jackie de Mar 27, 2007 08:02 PM

                                                                                        I also wanted to remind you that there is always that great brocolli salad. I switch the raisins out by using either dried cherries, cranberries or sweet red grapes, red onion, a few bacon crumbles (real bacon) sunflower seeds or sliced almonds, and a dressing made with milk, mayo, salt and pepper, and a little sugar or splenda if dieting. Then I let it sit overnight in the fridge, seems to be better the next day. Don't forget to use the stems, they are really good sliced thin..

                                                                                      2. l
                                                                                        lexpatti RE: flipkeat Mar 28, 2007 11:22 PM

                                                                                        Something I add to a nice mixed greens is prochutto wrappped around hearts of palm, then sliced throughout the salad, few mushrooms, light vinagarette or olive oil and lemon.

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