Showing posts with label salads. Show all posts
Showing posts with label salads. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Marinated Tri-Color Bell Pepper and Mushroom Salad


I don't know what's got into me, but I'm at an age and space in my life that now I can enjoy the 'fruits of my labor' as the saying goes! I'm actually sharing things on my food blog that really has everything to do about FOOD, and of course plenty of 'thrift finds' which seriously, I'm keeping that to myself...

Why? you ask; because then you will all be coming to S. Florida to visit and grab all the amazing things that I have yet to 'conquer' at a ridiculously cheap price!...LOL... I guarantee, nowhere in the states will you find such beautiful and practically new items for your home, from wares, dishes, pots and pans, glass ware, clothes, furniture, and other household items!

Now, I'm way off the subject! Way back to the mid to late 80's in my prime catering days, I purchased not one: but 2-35mil meter cameras, a Nikon, and a Canon with all the lenses including the telescope lenses for the close up shots, spent about $1,000. for the both, purchased at a local pawn shop, (Now my 14yr. old granddaughter Gabby has it and loves it, along with her latest Canon camera.)

I took some amazing photos with it, not knowing how the photos would turn out...no way to see and make adjustment before developing the photo! Well, here's an example of my pioneering days as a Private/Chef Caterer, which I rarely talk about, but nice to share these days!

I dug up my photo to scan, and also found the recipe on my trusty 4x6 index card which I also scanned to post the recipe of this delicious, and creative salad. The recipe and photo is from about 20 years ago, just when I got my first computer, with Windows 95 and AOL which still is my e-mail provider! Wow, to think I could've...would've...should've started my food blog which literally did not exist, for anyone, until probably starting ten years later, in 2006!
Here's another photo from 1996...just about when the Caprese Salad came into popularity...and still going very strong! I've made this salad so many different ways but this was one of my favorite with the addition of the pitted Nicoise olives, capers and snipped sun-dried tomatoes. The addition of the oil and balsamic vinegar is used just when serving!
Back in 1996, I worked for a small Cafe locally, part time, and also worked as a Private Chef for clients in Palm Beach, and Boca Raton, Florida for dinners and parties! Here are some samples of my goodies! The third from either side is the Caprese Salad, and the last one is my Marinated Tri-Color Peppers!

People often ask me what is my favorite cuisine, or most favorite things to make, I get tongue-tied and not able to answer right away because I have so many interests in the cooking field, but as I was reviewing my old (well, not so old) recipes, I see that it must be SALADS, and lots of it, which I also have posted on my Pinterest boards...the second favorite PASTAS, which I have also made at my work, and catering, and 3rd. has to be GRILLING...meats, and seafoods for sure! My all-time favorite cuisine is Italian, for sure...who doesn't love Italian food?!

Now that I share again...once more of some of my memories in actual photos, I feel HAPPY, and set for another day of adventures in FOOD and THRIFT!
Hugs,


Saturday, November 8, 2014

Tomato, Avocado, and Cucumber Salad

When you have 4 beautiful Haas avocados, that are still fairly hard...you let it sit outside in a basket, or fruit bowl and wait for two or three days and they will be perfectly at their best, firm, yet soft to make some nice salad with it...if you let it ripen another day or longer; best to make Guacamole out of it. In my case I chose to make a beautiful and healthy salad. Same goes with the plum tomatoes. When you purchase them, and they are firm, but just getting ripe...let them sit outside for a couple days, and they will ripen to perfection.

Also, I decided to add hard boiled eggs to the salad...only because hard boiled eggs are a nice addition to any healthy salad...and because, I felt extremely guilty for having to toss out half a dozen eggs that I neglected to use up, and they were nearly one month old. I always check the dates on the egg carton and are careful not to use them more than 1 week pass the expired date. The expiration date is really just a caution to warn you but they will still be OK to use after the expiration date for a week, I'm quite sure of that! I always use organic eggs which cost a little more, but so well worth it. Same with my vegetables!

At our Latino produce market, everything is 'dirt' cheap. Just have to make an effort to stop there, and stock up on all the things I need; but it's more convenient to buy everything at the local supermarket when I do my weekly grocery shopping. Who can pass up Haas avocados...2 for $1.00 when at the supermarket they are $1.50 each! Same with the limes, at the produce market, they are always 10 for $1.00 compared to 3 for $1.00 at the supermarket. You really have a choice, but not always convenient to go out of your way when you can find all the things you need in one stop! Whole Foods Market is more expensive, but that still happens to be my very favorite market for the best quality!
Even though I live alone, but I have lovely neighbors/friends in my condo complex, and my family is just a few minutes over the 'bridge' on the other side of the Intracoastal waterway. I live on the island, which is quite a large size, and only 1 supermarket; which I recently realized, but it takes only 10 minutes to drive over the bridge and have the 'world at your feet'! I only cook about once or twice a week, and almost always have all my amazing meals at my daughter's Lora! ...and once a week at my son Joe...how fortunate can one mom be?...having loving family around me...feeling truly Blessed!
When you prepare something healthy and delicious, you really need to have the freshest ingredients, especially when you make a beautiful salad. You don't always need lettuce for your salad...just use your imagination, and create something that inspires you...no recipe needed for that. I happen to love sweet Vidalia or another brand of sweet onions. Naturally sweet; you can almost bite into it like an apple...but really, you don't want to do that; just peel, an slice, or dice it to saute it in cooking...never, ever any tears...which is the best part, as well!






Tomato, Avocado, and Cucumber Salad
created by; Elisabeth




4 Haas avocados
4 Plum (Roma) tomatoes
1 firm cucumber
2 hard boiled eggs
1/2 of a medium sweet onion
1 or 2 limes
1 bunch of Italian parsley
Extra Virgin olive oil
Sea Salt
freshly ground pepper







Cut avocados, tomatoes, in half...carefully remove the pits from the avocados, then cut them into half again, lengthwise...same with the tomatoes, and dice them into bite size pieces.

Peel cucumber partially, or all the way, cut it in half lengthwise, and dice it into bite-size pieces as well. For the hard boiled eggs, also cut in half lengthwise and dice into bite-size pieces.


For the onion, cut in half, and slice thin lengthwise, as well. For the parsley, chop a small handful, and save a few whole pieces for decoration. Combine everything in the proper order, starting with the tomatoes, and ending with the avocado, and hard boiled eggs...since they are delicate. they need to be on top.

Drizzle with about 1 Tbsp. of olive oil, and juice of half of a lime...or a whole if not enough juices. Salt, and pepper to taste, and additional oil, and juice of lime
if preferred.

Serve with pita bread, flat bread, or bread of your choice. Serves 2, generously!


Thank you everyone for your kind comments, and support; and I do appreciate your friendship, even though I don't comment regularly, and often...not even checking my own blog. I must confess that I'm  Pinterest...aholic, and not even bothering with my e-mails every day! (when you receive about 200 e-mails daily, you really have to add another e-mail address...can't see the 'trees' from the forest...as they say!
Have a wonderful weekend, dear friends! xo

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Tuna Salad-Stuffed Tomatoes with Arugula

I've always loved and enjoyed fresh salads and lately I have gotten bored with the simple 'hum-drum' salad with just cucumbers, tomatoes, and sliced or chopped onions (which I love all kinds, but mostly the red onions.) As for the dressing, just a simple extra virgin olive oil, and white balsamic vinegar.
Sometimes I just run out of ideas what type of salads I should make, and I simply grab one of my cooking magazines...especially my newest subscription; Eating Well, which I share with my daughter among our other great cooking magazines the she and I subscribe to. The best kind of inspirations you get are of course...the ones with photos, and also knowing you don't have to run out to purchase so many ingredients just for that recipe.
Here in the U.S. we tend to eat lunch 'on the run'...sometime just grabbing some 'takeout' fast food,
if you happen to eat at home; maybe leftover stuff from the night before...or if you happen to be in 'luck'...a friend might take you out to a nice restaurant or eatery place not too expensive. You can of course split the bill! Well, I don't seem to fit any of these categories, because most of the time I skip lunch (not good)...eating breakfast too late, and I would be 'starving' by dinner time, which is so unhealthy!
The only ingredient that I had to buy was the baby Arugula...also known as Roquette, or Rocket. I like to buy it in the small plastic bags, already sealed and the leaves are perfect, and tender...just love the peppery taste when you take a bite, it almost burns your tongue; but mixed with other ingredients, it blends so well!

Tomatoes, stuffed with tuna salad is a classic elegant lunch dish...now, there's a healthier twist to it, just leaving out the mayo, and adding oil and vinegar, salt and pepper. I must tell you, this was such an amazing light and enjoyable lunch for 2, or 4 people. Did not even require bread or rolls!

Hope you are all having a beautiful weekend, with most of you starting your Fall Season...oh, how I miss the beautiful fall colors of yellow, orange, red, brown, and burgundy leaves adorning the trees...only to be falling so quickly.

Before you know it, Halloween is around the corner! xo

Tuna Salad-Stuffed Tomatoes with Arugula

July/August 2014           

The tuna in this great-looking stuffed tomato recipe isn’t your typical mayo-based affair. The sherry vinaigrette does double duty: it adds fresh flavor to the tuna filling and also dresses the baby arugula and white bean salad.

My modifications are in red

Ingredients   

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar I used white balsamic vinegar...you can use your favorite
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 4 large tomatoes  I used 2 large beefsteak tomatoes (for 2)
  • 2 5-ounce cans chunk light tuna in olive oil, drained I used 1 can of same tuna
  • 1/3 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped Kalamata olives
  • I also added 1 Tbsp of rinsed small capers
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 15-ounce can great northern beans, rinsed Navy Beans are almost the same; I used 1/2 the amount.
  • 8 cups baby arugula  4 cups
  • You can cut down on the ingredients, or just 'eyeball' it...use your own judgement
 Preparation
  1. Whisk oil, vinegar, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Transfer 3 tablespoons of the dressing to a large bowl and set aside.
  2. Slice enough off the top of each tomato to remove the core (1/2 to 1 inch). Chop enough of the tops to equal 1/2 cup and add to the medium bowl. Scoop out the tomato pulp using a teaspoon or melon baller. (Discard the pulp or save for another use.)
  3. Add tuna, celery, onion, olives and thyme to the medium bowl; gently toss to combine. Fill the hollowed tomatoes with the tuna mixture.
  4. Add beans and arugula to the dressing in the large bowl and toss to combine. Divide the salad among 4 plates and top each with a stuffed tomato.

Nutrition

Per serving: 353 calories; 18 g fat (2 g sat, 11 g mono); 7 mg cholesterol; 30 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 9 g total sugars; 20 g protein; 11 g fiber; 476 mg sodium; 878 mg potassium.
Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (70% daily value), Vitamin A (63% dv), Potassium (25% dv), Folate (21% dv), Magnesium (16% dv), Vitamin B12 (15% dv)