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Jun 26, 2008 12:28 PM

dinner menu needs one more item, but what?

I'm making a birthday dinner for my Dad on Saturday. So far I''m planning homemade veggie burgers with avocado slices and a panzanella salad with asparagus and peas. The meal needs something else, but I have no idea what. Tomatoes aren't quite in season here, or I would just throw in a big plate of sliced tomato and mozzarella. Does grilled corn fit in? Should I make a second salad? A dish with cheese?


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  1. Corn and Black Bean Salad

    1 (15 0z.) can black beans, (drained and rinsed)
    1 (15 oz) can Niblets corn
    Ranch dressing (to taste)
    Sunflower Kernels (roasted and salted)

    *drain black beans thoroughly on paper towels

    *combine w/Niblets corn (don’t use another brand of corn

    *Add ranch dressing just to moisten

    *refrigerate until serving ~~ corn and beans will absorb some
    dressing. You may want to add a little at serving time, but don’t
    make it “soupy”

    *stir in a couple of handfuls of sunflower kernels just before

    1. I always like potatoes as a side... how about thick-cut oven fries with paprika and finely chopped parsley? Or sweet potato fries, yum.

      Grilled corn would also be delicious, or you can grill and cut off the cob, mix with chickpeas, red onion, parsley, etc. etc. for a corn "salsa"/salad.

      There's a great recipe for breaded zucchini sticks in the July issue of Cooking Light. I believe you use a mix of regular breadcrumbs and panko, then bake them. The recipe also shows you how to make romesco dipping sauce with roasted red peppers.

      Happy Birthday to your dad!

      2 Replies
      1. re: elaineathon

        I just did some roasted sweet potatoes last night that were delicious! :)

        about 5-6 medium sized sweet potatoes peeled and diced, 1 cup diced onion and 3 strips of bacon(optional and for diet reasons we used turkey bacon but use whatever you like) plus 1-2 tablespoons olive oil, throw the whole thing on a jelly roll pan, roast onion and potatoes at 400F for about 30min, turn every 10 minutes to ensure even cooking... meanwhile prepare bacon(and if you're me drain off the fat...I know I know, that's the "best" part shhh I'm trying to lose some weight heh) and crumble the bacon into bits. Mix together the bacon and roasted veggies, dress with s&p to taste and serve.

        1. re: maplesugar

          I was going to recommend yam fries as well. I'd do a blend of root veggie strips... Yam or Sweet Potato, Turnips, Parsnips, Carrots, Butternut Squash...

      2. Grilled corn always fits in!

        1. Thanks, everybody! Looks like grilled corn, either on the cob or off the cob in a salad, is the way to go. Although, sweet potato fries sound good!

          1 Reply