19th December 2007

Roast Mushroom & Baby Bean Salad

To accompany our crab cakes tonight, I made this roasted mushroom salad featuring roasted shallots, green beans, and a tarragon dressing made from olive oil, lemon juice, and the liquid given off by the mushrooms themselves — mushroom lovers, this is for you! The only modification from the original recipe, found in Fitness Food, was that it called for tarragon vinegar; I substituted champagne vinegar because that’s what we had on hand. We’ll definitely make this again, next time I may keep the mushrooms warm and add them last.

Lisa says:

This salad *rules!* I heart shrooms.

Chris says:

I love the dressing on this, and the roasted shallots are really good.

Lisa says:

Can you believe there are people out there who don’t like mushrooms?

Chris says:

Weren’t you one of them just a few years ago?

Lisa says:

Shut it.

Roast Mushroom & Baby Bean Salad
1 1/4 lb mushrooms (I used a mix of white and cremini)
2 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbsp lemon juice
6 shallots, root ends trimmed, skin on
1 1/2 tbsp champagne vinegar
2 tsp finely chopped tarragon
1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
7 oz baby green beans, trimmed
2 handfuls arugula

Preheat the oven to 400F. Place the mushrooms in a large roasting pan. Add the oil, garlic, lemon juice, and shallots and toss until coated. Roast for 30 minutes, occasionally spooning over the juices. Remove from the oven and cool to room temperature. Slip the shallots from their skins and discard the skin.
Pour the cooking juices into a large mixing bowl. Add the champagne vinegar, tarragon, and parsley. Mix and season well.
Blanch the beans in boiling salted water for 2 minutes or until just tender. Drain and while still hot, add to the dressing. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Cut the mushrooms into quarters and add to the beans with the shallots and arugula. Toss and serve.

4 Servings

posted in Fitness Food, Salads and Light Soups | 5 Comments

22nd October 2007

Caesar Salad

Well, more accurately, a lower-fat version of Caesar dressing made without oil and egg yolks. This recipe is from the Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites Book.

Chris says:

Wow, for a low-fat Caesar this is pretty good.

Lisa says:

I’ve never made salad dressing before; I like it!

Chris says:

The leftover will be really good to dip veggies in!

2 hard-boiled eggs, whites only
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup nonfat/lowfat cottage cheese
1/4 cup nonfat/regular buttermilk
3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 kalamata olives, minced
2 tsp Pickapeppa sauce
salt and pepper to taste

4 slices bread, 1/2 inch thick
1 large garlic clove

Romaine, chopped
freshly shredded Romano cheese

Combine all the dressing ingredients, except the salt and pepper, in a blender and puree until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate.
Toast the bread slices. Peel the garlic clove, slice it in half, and rub the cut side against both sides of the toast. Cut into 1/2 inch cubes, and lightly toast again on an unoiled tray at 350 degrees.
Rinse the lettuce and combine with the croutons. Toss with about 1/4 cup fo the dressing to lightly coat. Sprinkle with the cheese and serve.

posted in Moosewood Low-Fat Favorites, Salads and Light Soups | 0 Comments

11th October 2007

Delicious Seared Tuna Salad with Chayote Slaw

Tonight we tried out a main dish salad from Mexican Everyday by Rick Bayless. A bed of romaine is topped with a chayote slaw tossed in a guajillo chile dressing and seared tuna. A lot of different textures and flavors going on with this salad!

Chris says:

I really love this guajillo chile dressing — it’s the same one we used on the heirloom tomato salad, but I used champagne vinegar this time.

Lisa says:

It’s great, I love it. The flavors go really well together. Although when I first saw it I thought I’d be starving later.

Chris says:

Yeah, sorry, it doesn’t conform to our usual volume of food. So are you starving?

Lisa says:

Not STARVING… but I’m just a little hungry.

Chris says:

Dessert time!

Seared Rare Tuna Salad with Chayote Slaw and Guajillo Chile Dressing
3/4 cup olive oil, vegetable oil, or a mix
2 medium dried guajillo or New Mexico chiles
2 garlic cloves, peeled and quartered
1/4 cup champagne vinegar
4 tuna steaks, not less than 3/4 inch thick
2 chayotes
4 cups thickly sliced romaine
chopped cilantro

Pour the oil into a large skillet and set to medium heat. When the oil is warm, add the chiles and the garlic. Turn and stir continually until the insides of the chiles have lightened in color and they are toasty smelling — 30 seconds or so. Remove from the heat.
Transfer the chiles to a blender (leave the oil and garlic in the pan), add the vinegar and a teaspoon of salt. Blend for 30 seconds. When the oil and garlic are cool, add to the blender (set the skillet aside without washing) and puree until smooth. Taste and season with more salt if desired. Pour into a jar and secure the lid.
Return the skillet to medium-high to high heat. Sprinkle both sides of the fish with salt. When the oil-filmed skillet is really hot, lay the tuna in the pan. When brown, no more than 1 minute, flip and sear the other side. Remove the skillet from the heat. Thoroughly shake the dressing, then carefully drizzle on about 3 tablespoons dressing. Turn the tuna in the dressing from time to time as it cools.
Cut the chayotes in half lengthwise and remove the pits. Shred the chayotes through the coarse side of a grater. Scoop into a bowl and toss with 3 tablespoons dressing. Taste and season with salt.
Divide the greens among four plates, forming them into wide nests. Top each with a portion of the chayote slaw. Slice each piece of tuna in half crosswise on a bias and place in the center of the salad. Sprinkle with cilantro.

Serves 4

Considering this is the first time we’ve used chayote, and the recipe includes our favorite herb (cilantro), I’m going to submit this as our entry for the Weekend Herb Blogging Two Year Anniversary!

posted in Main Dishes, Mexican Everyday | 5 Comments

9th September 2007

Southwestern Corn and Black Bean Salad

We needed an excuse to use one of our new serving platters; a potluck provided the perfect opportunity to fill it with this tasty, simple, black bean and corn salad from Cooking Light. It is quick to make and versatile — you can use it to top bread or appetizers, serve it as a dip, or our favorite, eat it right out of the bowl.

Southwestern Corn and Black Bean Salad
1 pound dried black beans
11 1/2 cups water, divided
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups fresh corn kernels
2 cups chopped seeded tomato
1 cup finely chopped Vidalia or other sweet onion
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 cup chopped green bell pepper

1/2 cup fresh lime juice (about 3 limes)
1 tablespoon chili powder
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons honey
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro

To prepare salad, sort and wash the beans. Combine beans and 5 1/2 cups water in a 6-quart pressure cooker. Close lid securely; bring to high pressure over high heat. Adjust heat to medium or level needed to maintain high pressure; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat; place cooker under cold running water. Remove lid. Drain beans; rinse with cold water. Drain and cool.
Heat 1 teaspoon oil in cooker over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and 2 garlic cloves; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add beans and 6 cups water. Close lid securely; bring to high pressure over high heat. Adjust heat to medium or level needed to maintain high pressure, and cook 12 minutes. Remove from heat; place cooker under cold running water. Remove lid. Drain bean mixture; rinse with cold water. Drain and cool. Combine bean mixture, corn, tomato, onion, and bell peppers in a large bowl.
To prepare dressing, combine juice and next 7 ingredients (juice through jalapeños), stirring with a whisk. Stir in cilantro. Pour dressing over bean mixture; stir gently to combine. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

12 servings.

posted in Cooking Light | 0 Comments

16th July 2007

Fattoush with Grilled Shrimp

The temperatures in Seattle have finally cooled a bit, but inside the house it’s still pretty warm — so we’re still on a “how can we cook without heating up the kitchen” kick. Tonight we made fattoush, a Lebanese/Syrian salad that features a variety of veggies and toasted pita bread — but with a twist. We started with the basic recipe found in Secrets of Healthy Middle Eastern Cuisine, but in order to make it more of a main course rather than a side dish, we tossed it with chopped grilled lemon-pepper shrimp. It worked quite well with the lemon-sumac-herb dressing; that entire bowl was gone in just a few minutes!

Fattoush with Grilled Shrimp
2 large arabic pitas
8 large romaine leaves
1 cup chopped parsley
1 small green pepper, chopped
1 cucumber, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch slices, halved
3 medium tomatoes, cubed
4 green onions, cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 small onion, sliced, halved
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp sumac
1 tbsp oregano
1 tbsp mint
1 tbsp olive oil
3/4 cup lemon juice
1 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
lemon-pepper seasoning

In a large salad bowl, tear lettuce into small pieces. Add the choppeed parsley, green pepper, cucumber, tomatoes, and onion. Toss.
To prepare the dressing, whisk together the garlic, sumac, oregano, mint, olive oil, and lemon juice in a small bowl. Set aside.
Prepare grill on high heat. Arrange shrimp on a grill rack or broiler pan and shake lemon-pepper seasoning over the shrimp. Spray with cooking spray. Place the shrimp on the grill and cook for 4-5 minutes or until done. Lower grill to a low flame and toast pita bread until it is crispy. Remove from grill and break the pita into 1-2 inch pieces.
To assemble the salad, roughly chop the warm shrimp, reserving 3 or 4 whole for garnish. Add the chopped shrimp to the salad, then toss with the dressing. Finally, add the broken pita bread and toss once more. Top with the reserved whole shrimp. Serve immediately.

Makes 2-3 very generous portions.

posted in Main Dishes, Middle Eastern | 0 Comments