with Vanilla Ginger Yogurt Dressing
I found some gorgeous big, juicy, crunchy black grapes at the grocery store the other day. I am not really much of a grape lover (unless it’s WINE!), but my kids like them, so I decided to bring some black grapes home for the teenagers. But my kids didn’t eat them. I even put some in a little container for my daughter for a before-dance snack, but she didn’t touch them. I kept reminding my son that they were there … no luck.
So it seems like I’m stuck eating the grapes. I tried to think of a way to eat them that I would actually enjoy and the first thing that came to mind is a salad. I thought if I added some crunchy walnuts and blue cheese, that would probably make them palateable. And you know what? It worked! I think I may actually start LIKING grapes …
Black Grape, Walnut & Blue Cheese Salad with Vanilla Ginger Yogurt Dressing
Red or green grapes would work nicely in this salad too. Red ones would add more color, too!
- Mixed greens
- Black grapes, sliced or halved
- Walnuts, toasted
- Blue cheese crumbles
- Vanilla Ginger Yogurt dressing (recipe below)
Prepare the dressing and set aside. Fill your salad bowl most of the way with mixed greens. Add a generous amount of grapes and toss to mix. Top with some toasted walnuts and blue cheese crumbles and drizzle with the Vanilla Ginger Yogurt Dressing.
Vanilla Ginger Yogurt Dressing
- 1/3 cup vanilla lowfat yogurt
- 1 – 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger root
- milk or rosewater, to thin
In a small bowl, mix the vanilla yogurt with the grated ginger root. Add milk or rosewater as needed (I used a little of each) to thin out the yogurt to the right consistency to drizzle properly.
This recipe was shared at Fit & Fabulous Fridays, Scrumptious Sunday, All my Bloggy Friends, Tuesday Talent Show, Tasty Tuesday, Newlyweds Recipe Linky, Show & Share Wednesday and Lifeologia’s Birthday Party Potluck.
This is such an amazing sandwich. It’s really so simple. But it takes the whole concept of Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato to a new level. All you have to do is add a little bit of sweet onion and some gouda cheese, get that cheese really good and melty and OMG you will be drowning in heaven when you eat your sandwich. So that’s why it’s a Sooo OMG BLT. SOMG = Sweet Onion Melted Gouda. How sweet is THAT?
The most necessary thing for this sandwich is a fresh-from-the-garden tomato. If you don’t have a garden (or a friend or relative who has a garden who will share a tomato), one from the farmer’s market will do in a pinch. If you’re going to use a grocery store tomato, just skip this whole idea. Go make something else. Because to get the true essence of a really great BLT, you need a really good fresh garden tomato.
The sweet onion and the melty gouda cheese elevate the bacon and the heavenly homegrown tomato taste and then the mixed greens come along and top it all off with their beauty and crunch. You really must have at least one of these beautiful sandwiches during tomato season … I have had two so far and I’m SO tempted to make another one … SOMG they are SO good!
Sweet Onion Melted Gouda Bacon Lettuce and Tomato Sandwich (SoooOMG BLT!)
For each sandwich:
- 1 nice thick slice of bread (homemade bread works the best … I used my dad’s whole wheat yogurt bread)
- 3 slices of lower-fat, naturally smoked, thin-sliced bacon
- Thinly sliced sweet onion
- Fresh garden tomato slices
- A few slices of Gouda cheese (I used Dofino Gouda that they sent me … )
- Mixed greens
- Cook the bacon strips to your liking. I like mine a little floppy, but my sisters hate the way I make bacon. My kids love it though. (HA! For once I am validated by my kids.) Use a clean kitchen towel or paper towels to soak up the excess fat from the bacon.
- Set the bread on a baking sheet covered with cooking spray. Cover the bread with a layer of bacon, then several slices of the sweet onion, then make sure you cover the whole thing with fresh tomato slices. Cover the tomato with slices of gouda cheese.
- Bake at 400 for about 8 – 10 minutes or until the cheese is really good and melted and bubbly.
- Remove the sandwiches from the oven and carefully transfer each sandwich to a plate and add a good tumble of mixed greens. Then revel in the joy of a purely wonderful sandwich.
I want to thank Dofino cheese for sending me some of their wonderful Gouda cheese and my amazing friends from the BOHO tribe for helping me name this sandwich! It was Uncle Gary from Uncle Gary’s Gourmet Peppers and Pepper Jelly that thought of this name.
This is an #onionlove post.
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I went into the kitchen to get a cup of chai this morning. It was nearing lunchtime and when I reached into the fridge to grab the milk, the cantaloupe reached out to me. I came out of the kitchen with this salad. I got so caught up in the salad that I had to go back into the kitchen for the tea.
You must try this salad. It is pure simplicity to make, but tastes like heaven, especially if you can find yourself a really good juicy sweet cantaloupe. The sweet maple syrup with the mint and the tangy yogurt perfectly balance the juicy muskmelon and the crunch of the nuts. The mixed greens just round it all out, adding crunch, color, and variety.
Not to mention your body will love you for it. Every ingredient in this simple salad pitches in to help you feel energized and alive.
Cantaloupe & Toasted Walnut Salad with Maple Mint Yogurt Dressing
Inspired by my Maple Mint Cantaloupe Lassi
- Mixed greens
- Fresh cantaloupe, cut into chunks
- Toasted Walnuts
- Maple Mint Yogurt Dressing (recipe below)
Mix up the dresssing. Fill your bowl most of the way with greens. Add a generous pile of cantaloupe chunks. Sprinkle with a couple tablespoons of toasted walnuts. Drizzle with the Maple Mint Yogurt dressing to your heart’s content. Garnish with fresh mint leaves or edible flowers if you like. Revel in the wonderful taste of this ultra simple salad.
Maple Mint Yogurt Dressing
- 1/4 cup plain nonfat yogurt
- 1 Tablespoon maple syrup
- About 1 Tablespoon fresh mint leaves, chopped fine
In a small bowl, stir together all ingredients. Drizzle generously on the salad. Store any remaining dressing in a covered container in the fridge.
I’m SOooo excited … there are sweet cherries in my house! I almost never have sweet cherries. They just don’t grow here, and I can’t bear to pay $4 to $5 per pound for them so I very very rarely buy them. But this year must be a good cherry year because I’ve seen them for $2.50 – $3.00/pound. So I bought some! Three times now! The first time my daughter ate all of them. The second time she ate most of them, but I got a few. THIS time must be my turn because she hasn’t touched them yet. So I seized the opportunity and put them in my salad. And while I was at it, I made a cherry red wine vinaigrette, which turned out even better than I ever dreamed it would. I just started throwing things together and up came this brilliant-tasting cherry red sweet/tart vinaigrette that’s just super yummy.
Cherry Beef Salad with Toasted Pecans
I think some goat cheese would be nice on this salad too, but I’m all out of it!
- Mixed greens with spinach
- Pitted sweet cherries
- Sweet onion, sliced and roughly chopped
- Sweet bell pepper, chopped
- Toasted pecans
- Chunks or slices of cooked beef or venison (I used some leftover Spiedies)
- Cherry Malbec Vinaigrette (recipe below)
Fill your salad bowl most of the way with greens. Toss on a bunch of cherries, some onion, a little bell pepper and then sprinkle with a few toasted pecans. Drizzle generously with cherry malbec vinaigrette and enjoy.
Cherry Malbec Vinaigrette
- 10 sweet cherries, pitted
- 1/4 cup Malbec (or other red wine)
- 2 Tablespoons cherry (or berry) syrup
- 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
- a few fresh basil leaves
- a few sprigs of fresh thyme
- a few sprigs of fresh dill
- 1/4 teaspoon Sriracha
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon chia seeds (optional, but they add nutritional value and help thicken the dressing)
In a handi chopper, blender or food process, blend up all the ingredients well till the cherries and garlic are fully pureed. Store in a covered bottle in the fridge.
Let’s re-define the idea of egg salad, shall we? I mean, who decided that “egg salad” should be a bunch of chopped hardboiled eggs with mayonnaise on bread? Excuse me, but how is that a salad? I don’t mean to knock the traditional egg salad sandwich … there’s a comforting charm in a well-made egg salad sandwich, but I have to tell you, when I think salad, I think greens. To me, a salad really needs greens before it deserves to be called a salad.
Yesterday I redefined the whole concept of “egg salad” in my mind. I put a fried egg on my salad. Really, it’s nothing new, but it’s new to me … it’s been done before … I’ve seen it, but the idea of putting a fried egg on a salad sounded completely crazy to me. A fried egg? on a REAL salad? With greens? Seriously?
It sounded so completely weird to me until I made this sundried tomato ranch dressing. And my friend Melissa said to me: it would be great on eggs. Oh. my. gosh. YES! A fried egg, over easy, with that beautiful bright yellow messy, runny yolk … and toast … and crunchy green salad … oh let’s toss on some avocado too … oh yes! It’s brilliant! I could eat this forever … I made it again today. It’s like the quickest meal ever. And it’s SOooooo goood!
It is the sundried tomato ranch dressing that makes this brilliant. Without it, it’s just eggs oozing all over my greens and yeah not really that exciting at all … but add that dressing and some crunchy toast and I’m happy as a clam.
(Are clams really happy? I sure hope so, cuz otherwise it would make NO sense to say “happy as a clam” … then again, we don’t really know that they are happy, so why do we say that?)
Whatever. This egg salad made me happy. Like giggly from my toes to my nose kinda happy. I will never, ever, think of egg salad the same way again.
Egg on a Salad with Avocado, Sweet Onion & Sundried Tomato Ranch Dressing
I got so excited talking about the salad I forgot to tell you about the flowers! They are hosta flowers … the flowers of hostas, like hosta leaves, are edible. You probably have some growing in your yard. They taste like salad. And they are insanely beautiful, on or off a salad.
- Mixed spring greens with spinach (or whatever greens you’d like to use …)
- Green bell pepper, chopped
- Sweet onion, sliced and chopped
- Avocado, sliced and/or cut into chunks
- Organic hosta flowers (or other edible organic flowers … totally optional but they look pretty! make sure yours aren’t sprayed with nasty lawn chemicals before eating, though)
- Eggs, 1 for each salad
- Thin slices of french bread or baguette, toasted
- Sundried tomato ranch salad dressing (recipe here)
- First mix up the dressing and set it aside.
- Make a good bed of greens in your salad bowl and tuck in some onion, avocado, and bell pepper. Add a few flowers if you like, around the edge, leaving a good space in the center for the egg.
- Spray a frying pan with cooking spray and heat to medium heat. Crack a fresh egg into the pan and season with Red Robin Seasoning (or salt) and freshly ground pepper. Cook it sunny side up or over easy, whatever you prefer.
- Toast the bread while the egg is cooking, then spread the ranch dressing on the bread slices.
- When the egg is done to your liking, set it gently on top of the salad. Top with the ranch (or serve on the side), and serve with the toast.
This was the salad I had in mind when I created the sundried tomato ranch dressing. A super simple, very tomato salad bursting that really focuses on the tomato. I forgot to put the feta cheese on BEFORE I took the pictures … ooops! But don’t forget to add the feta. The tangy salty feta is so good with the juicy tomatoes and ranch.
Triple Tomato Ranch Pasta Salad
You could add other fresh vegies to this salad as well … this recipe made enough for two meals for me, but I’m not a big eater.
- 1 cup dry cellentani pasta (rotini, bowtie, or penne would work well for this too)
- 1/2 cup chopped sweet onions
- 2 red ripe tomatoes, chopped
- Mixed greens
- 1/4 cup sundried tomato ranch dressing (recipe here)
- Several sundried tomatoes, chopped into bits
- Feta cheese crumbles
- Leftover grilled meat (optional … I tossed in some of my Spiedies) … or try some cooked chickpeas (or other beans) instead and maybe some sunflower seeds?
- For garnish: Green onion, snipped
First, make the dressing and set it aside while you create the salad.
Cook the pasta in boiling water till done, then drain. In a bowl, mix together the pasta, sweet onions, tomatoes and ranch dressing.
Cover your salad plate (or bowl) with a layer of mixed greens, then add a healthy bunch of the pasta salad mixture. Top with the chopped sundried tomatoes, chunks of meat, feta cheese crumbles and snipped green onions.
Enjoy! (I did take ONE photo after I added the feta … I had already started in on devouring the salad by then though …)
This is a post for #tomatolove.
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on Mixed Greens with Ginger Grapefruit Vinaigrette
Hey guess what? I’m guest posting on Carrie’s Experimental Kitchen today … it’s a yummy salad I made with my mulberries.
Go on over to Carrie’s blog and check it out!