Posts Tagged ‘salad’

This summer we seem to be having an endless string of 90+ days, which makes it a challenge to find light and delicious dishes that don’t make me sleepy. My ideal meal in weather like this is a light salad or fruit/vegetable along with a few bites of something really tasty like a grilled cheese. Balance between veg and cravings.

This salad has crisp, refreshing watermelon paired with feta, which is a lighter cheese that works well in summer. Add a little fresh lemon juice and mint, and you have a great starter or light lunch for these hot days.

Watermelon and Feta Salad

2 cups cubed watermelon

1 cup cubed feta (your favorite variety)

3 tablespoons chopped mint

Juice of 1/2 lemon

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 scallion, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

Combine the watermelon, feta, mint, and scallion in a bowl and toss. Squeeze the lemon over and drizzle the olive oil. Toss again to combine and serve!


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I suppose the most memorable recipe I’ve posted in the first year of Meatballs & Milkshakes has to be my Shaved Asparagus Salad because it won Best Spring Vegetable recipe on Food52 at this time last year. They have been nice enough to spotlight me here and I can’t say enough good things about their wonderful site.

For Christmas, the Feast of the Seven Fishes was definitely another memorable moment– I made seven fish dishes in one night! And we had delicious chocolate pudding to end the night, it doesn’t get much better.

Some of the recipes that really stick out in my mind over the year are obviously pastas. This linguine bolognese that I made for Valentine’s day was unbelievable and it still makes my mouth water.

This tagliatelle with shrimp and cabbage was a recreation from one of my favorite restaurants, and it got some press over on Serious Eats, another of my favorite blogs.

Of course, it all started with my homemade pappardelle with duck ragu. You can see that hopefully my pictures have improved a bit…the recipes were yummy even then though!

And of course, I made my first pork shoulder, slow roasting it and shredding it for tacos which were a big hit. Who knew pork could be so good!

While we’re talking meat, I can’t forget this beef stew that I made…it was by far the tastiest beef stew ever with amazingly delicious carrots. They soaked up the beef juices are were almost better than the beef itself. Almost.

And of course we can’t forget my obsession with the Flour cookbook this year. I made all sorts of cookies from it, including these yummy oatmeal raisin cookies

and chewy chocolate cookies. I’ve almost baked my way through all the Flour cookies, and they’ve all been amazing. Definitely a go-to cookbook that I recommend buying.

As far as other desserts go, there were a lot of pies but the ones I’m looking forward to again most are these: the mini strawberry rhubarb pies that were great for individual servings straight from the freezer, and the quick berry pie. Both are great for summer and I’m hoping it will be another good one!

I’m off to Italy for a week, but I’ve left a couple posts for you while I’m away….and hopefully I’ll bring back some new Italian inspiration! Bring on the broccoli rabe and orecchiette!

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I love citrus in my salad, and I’m not really big on salad in other variations. So, that means we eat a lot of citrus vinaigrette. A bright, colorful salad on the side of something delicious and indulgent balances and rounds out the meal. This salad is a sicilian favorite, combining blood oranges and olives. If I liked fennel, a little raw fennel shaved on the salad with a mandoline would be a nice touch.

Blood Orange and Olive Salad

1 orange and 1 blood orange, supremed

1/2 cup olives like Gaeta or your favorite, sliced

3 cups spinach

1 lemon

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon honey

salt and pepper

2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts (optional)

To make the vinaigrette, combine the juice of the lemon, olive oil, honey, and salt and pepper to taste and whisk together. Supreme the citrus by slicing the top and bottom off the peel, running your knife along the side all the way around to remove the peel and all white stuff. Slice on either side of each segment so that you have citrus segments without any white. Squeeze the juice out of remaining bits.

Toss the spinach in the vinaigrette and add in citrus segments and olives (and pine nuts if you are using them).

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I love tomato season– nothing makes me happier at the store than to find tomatoes that smell like they are just off the vine. It’s a rare thing, but unless you can smell them, you won’t taste much. I’ve been spoiled though, because my dad grew tomatoes and basil at home. They’re always best right after they have been picked, but I’ve found some pretty good substitutions at Eataly (a local store). Combine that with their delicious buffala mozzarella or even better, their burrata….mmmm. Capri is unbelievably beautiful and they sure know how to make a salad.

Caprese Salad

1 tomato, sliced into 1/2 inch thick slices

6-8 basil leaves

1 ball mozzarella or burrata, sliced the same thickness as the tomato

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon good balsamic vinegar

flaked sea salt like Maldon

Layer the tomato and mozzarella slices with the basil leaves. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar and sprinkle with some sea salt. That’s it!

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With the start of spring, I thought I would re-post my favorite Shaved Asparagus Salad. It’s a fantastic, fresh salad with an elegance that makes it perfect for even fancy dinners. And of course, it won Best Spring Vegetable on Food52 last spring!

Shaved Asparagus Salad

Half bunch of asparagus

Handful of toasted hazelnuts (toast in a pan or oven until medium brown), crushed (break in towel or zip-lock bag)

1 tablespoon chopped mint

1/2 lemon, juiced (about 1/4 cup)

3 tablespoons Sherry vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

Salt and pepper

Parmigiano or pecorino

Using a vegetable peeler, shave the asparagus lengthwise to create strips. Toss with the hazelnuts and mint. Wisk together lemon juice, vinegar, and olive oil. Pour over asparagus and mix with salt and pepper to taste. Shave parmegiano or pecorino on top.

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This salad says Spring to me like nothing else. It’s bright, green, and fresh looking and the salty bite of the pecorino gives it beautiful depth of flavor. The mint makes it even more refreshing and it pairs well with anything. It’s still cold and rainy here in New York, and this is a much needed reminder that Spring is just around the corner.

Fava Bean and Pecorino Salad

2 cups fava beans, shelled from the outer layer

1 cup arugula

Juice and zest of 1 lemon

3 tablespoons chopped mint

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper

Pecorino shavings

Blanch the fava beans in boiling water for 2 minutes so that you can remove the white outer shell. Shock in ice water to stop the cooking. Pinch one end of a fava so that the bean inside pops out.

Combine the shelled favas with the arugula, lemon juice and zest, mint, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and toss together. Plate with some of the pecorino shavings on top to garnish.

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As most people are probably doing after the holidays, I was craving a salad to balance out all the heavy, rich food everywhere. This is one of my favorites, and it’s really not even a recipe. The bresaola is from one of my favorite places in NY, Di Palo. If you haven’t been there, you should go…it’s the best place to get Italian salumi and cheese. Plus, it’s out of another era– they still handwrite bills and ring you up on an old fashioned register. They’ll give you a taste of anything, and I really recommend their homemade burrata and mozzarella. If you’re lucky, they will have some freshly made porchetta sitting out on the counter.

Bresaola, Parmesan, and Arugula Salad

8-12 slices of Bresaola, fanned out on a plate

2 cups baby arugula

zest and juice of 1 lemon

3 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper

shards or shavings of parmesan

Combine the lemon and olive oil with some salt and pepper and whisk together. (I usually put it all in a plastic takeout container and shake it. I can keep any leftovers for later and it’s the easiest way to emulsify the dressing.)

In a separate bowl, pour the dressing over the arugula and toss with your hands. I prefer doing it this way rather than using spoons because you make sure to coat your greens well.

Pile the arugula in the center of the plate and pour a little extra dressing over the top. Place the parmesan shards around the top and grind some fresh pepper over the top. If you want to get fancy, you can drizzle truffle oil over because it goes really well with the bresaola.

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