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Feb 25, 2018
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Posts Tagged ‘salad’

Make This: Apple-Burrata Salad

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016



Cabbage, apples and creamy burrata cheese come together for a sophisticated spin on a humble salad. In a large bowl, whisk together ¼ cup lime juice, ¼ cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons maple syrup and a few drops of hot sauce. Add a 10-ounce bag of shredded green cabbage, 1 thinly sliced Pink Lady or Granny Smith apple and ¼ cup chopped fresh dill. Toss well to combine. Top the salad with a 4-ounce ball of room-temperature burrata and slice it into quarters, allowing the cheese to seep out and mix with the dressed salad. Sprinkle with ¼ cup chopped toasted walnuts and serve.


-photo by Greg Rannells

Make This: Strawberry-Cucumber Salad

Tuesday, June 21st, 2016



Perfect for a summer brunch or as a steak dinner side, this salad’s sweet-tart dressing complements the berries and cucumber like a string of pearls with a seersucker sundress. In a medium bowl, combine 1 pint thinly sliced strawberries, 1 peeled and thinly sliced English cucumber and ½ cup chiffonaded basil. In a small bowl, stir together ½ cup creme fraiche*, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, ½ teaspoon honey and ½ teaspoon lemon zest. Drizzle the dressing over each salad and top with ¼ cup chopped toasted hazelnuts, evenly divided among the salads.

*To make your own creme fraiche, combine 1 cup cream and 1 tablespoon buttermilk in a glass jar. Cover and store in a warm spot 8 to 24 hours, or until thickened. Refrigerate and use within 12 days.


-photo by Greg Rannells

Meatless Monday: Strawberry, Melon and Avocado Salad

Monday, May 2nd, 2016


The first sweet red strawberries have arrived at the farmers market, and we’re welcoming them with a vibrant salad. Sliced ripe strawberries, bright cantaloupe and creamy avocados are tossed with feta, peppery arugula and sweet, minty vinaigrette for a fresh bite and playful texture. Get the recipe here.

By the Book: “Crossroads” by Tal Ronnen

Friday, April 1st, 2016



I’ve been curious to try Tal Ronnen’s cookbook, Crossroads, since I heard an interview with him on “The Splendid Table.” Ronnen is chef of Los Angeles eatery Crossroads, a restaurant lauded for revolutionizing plant-based dining. The dishes aren’t intentionally health-focused, nor a mash-up of Frankenfoods laden with chemicals. Only one recipe calls for tofu – and it’s not one you’d expect. Instead, you’ll find recipes for plant-forward dishes using classic cooking techniques and a few clever tricks to provide flavors and textures familiar to omnivores.

Ronnen’s recipes are clear and precise. Balsamic-roasted mushrooms with shallots and toasted Marcona almonds had a long name for a small plate, but it produced divine results. I reduced balsamic vinegar and agave syrup to make a sweet, sticky glaze that I tossed with shallots and cremini, shiitake and oyster mushrooms. The whole mixture roasted in the oven before hitting a saute pan with even more shallots, garlic, balsamic and sherry. Mixed herbs and crunchy almonds added necessary vibrancy and texture to the finished dish.

Since this is a small plate, there’s a lot of flavor packed into each bite. The balsamic glaze nearly overwhelmed the more delicate oyster and shiitake mushrooms, but bright herbs kept it from tipping into too-sweet territory. While we devoured the dish on its own, we agreed that serving it with a base – garlic toast, polenta, a bed of arugula – would have rounded it out and given those strong balsamic notes something to mingle with.

Skill level: Intermediate. While complicated recipes like artichoke “oysters” and fresh pasta dishes abound, there are plenty of simpler options available, too.
This book is for: Home cooks anxious to throw dinner parties where no one realizes the meal was vegan until the last bite of dark chocolate rice pudding.
Other recipes to try: Spaghetti Squash Noce Moscata, Roasted Fennel with Clementine Beurre Blanc and Toasted Buckwheat or Sweet Corn Risotto with Buttered Leeks, Cherry Tomatoes and Tomato-Sherry Cream Sauce
The verdict: After much debate, this dish fell just short of Battersby’s Farfalle with Gorgonzola and Pistachios, which we felt best represented a complete dish. However, we’ll repeat this recipe and slather it atop garlic toast (or ditch the vegan concept altogether and add burrata) very soon.




Balsamic-Roasted Mushrooms with Shallots and Toasted Marcona Almonds
4 servings

2 lbs. mixed mushrooms, such as cremini and shiitake, stemmed, wiped of grit, and quartered
4 large shallots, halved lengthwise and cut crosswise into large slices
3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup Balsamic Reduction (recipe follows)
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 shallot, minced
4 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup dry sherry
2 Tbsp. Balsamic Reduction (recipe follows)
¼ cup fresh mint leaves, hand-torn, plus more for garnish
¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, hand-torn, plus more for garnish
4 fresh dill sprigs, hand-torn, plus more for garnish
4 fresh chives, sliced into 1-inch pieces, plus more for garnish
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup toasted Marcona almonds, smashed with a mallet or heavy pan

• To prepare the mushrooms: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
• Put the mushrooms and shallots in a mixing bowl and drizzle with the oil. Pour in the balsamic reduction, season with the red pepper flakes, salt, and black pepper, and turn the mushrooms and shallots over so they are well coated. Spread the vegetables out in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for 20 to 25 minutes, until they are tender and deep brown. Set aside. (The roasted mushrooms and shallots can be prepared a couple of hours in advance, covered, and held at room temperature.)
• Put a large saute pan over medium heat and coat with the oil. When the oil is hot, add the roasted mushrooms and shallots, toss in the minced shallot and garlic, and cook, stirring, until the shallot and garlic soften, about 1 minute. Add the sherry and balsamic reduction and cook, stirring, until the liquid has evaporated, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the mint, parsley, dill, and chives, tossing to distribute them evenly. Season with salt and black pepper.
• Transfer to a serving bowl or individual plates and scatter the almonds on top. Top with more herbs and serve warm.

Balsamic Reduction
½ cup

½ cup agave nectar
1 cup balsamic vinegar
1 shallot, halved
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

• Heat the agave in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until it thins out and is warmed, about 5 minutes. Add the vinegar and shallot and gently simmer, swirling the pan a few times, until the sauce has reduced and thickened to the consistency of maple syrup and coats the back of a spoon, about 50 minutes.
• Remove the shallot and add a good pinch each of salt and pepper. The reduction can be stored covered at room temperature for up to 3 months.

Reprinted with permission from Artisan

Meatless Monday: Roasted Beet Salad

Monday, March 7th, 2016




In these last few weeks of winter when we’re craving fresh produce, we turn to ruby red beets to brighten up our Meatless Mondays. This gem of a Beet Salad sees roasted beets diced and dressed with ginger, chives, balsamic and garlic for a zippy bite sure to put a spring in your step. Get the recipe here.


-photo by Michelle Volansky  

Meatless Monday: Tender Kale Salad with Avocado Dressing

Monday, January 4th, 2016



This kale salad boasts simple preparation and bold flavors. Blend on avocado, lemon juice, vinegar-based hot sauce and olive oil to create a creamy dressing with a kick. Give those greens a well-deserved massage and rub the kale with lemon juice and salt to soften the leaves and lessen the bitterness. Toss with the dressing and cherry tomatoes and dive into a healthy new year. Click here for the recipe.



Cooking the Classics: Caesar Salad

Monday, November 30th, 2015



Few salads are more iconic than Caesar. We turned to chef Kier Puckett at Mike Shannon’s Steaks & Seafood for his take on this steakhouse classic. Step one: Put down that bottled dressing. This umami-packed DIY version uses raw egg yolks, white anchovy fillets, roasted garlic and cold olive oil – Puckett’s secret to a thick, rich dressing. Step two: Give the emperor of salads a proper throne. Add the dressing to a nonreactive wooden or glass serving bowl (We like Narcise natural wood salad bowls.), then toss with crisp romaine. Hail, Caesar!

Caesar Salad
Courtesy of Mike Shannon’s Steaks & Seafood’s Kier Puckett
4 servings

2 to 4 slices grilled baguette, plus more for serving
4 white anchovy fillets,* coarsely chopped
3 roasted garlic cloves
2 egg yolks
¼ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
Dash Worcestershire sauce
½ cup cold olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
6 heads romaine lettuce, chopped

In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the baguette slices to create about cup breadcrumbs. Add the anchovy fillets, garlic, egg yolks, Parmigiano-Reggiano, lemon juice, mustard and Worcestershire and puree until well blended. With the machine running, add the oil in a slow stream to emulsify. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Pour the dressing into a serving bowl. Add the romaine and toss to coat. Serve with grilled baguette slices.

*Available at Straub’s in Clayton

-photo by Greg Rannells

By the Book: “Cairo Kitchen” by Suzanne Zeidy

Friday, November 27th, 2015



Being a sucker for beautiful food photography, there were at least six dishes in each of the nine chapters in Suzanne Zeidy’s Cairo Kitchen that I wanted to make for this final round of the Middle Eastern cookbook battle. I had to narrow it down. I considered that in the next few weeks there will be many potluck dinners and parties to which I will need to bring a side dish. With an eye toward keeping it somewhat light and healthy, I wisely settled on the Honey-Spiced Carrot Salad.

The recipe came together in a snap and only required about 15 minutes in front of the stove to boil water and blanch carrots. The rest of the ingredients were easy to procure, and I had most of the required spices and dressing ingredients in my pantry already.

The end result was a bright salad with a touch of warm spice from the cinnamon and nutmeg. although the texture may have been less grainy had it been have whisked together first instead of dressing the carrots with individual ingredients then mixing. Lemon juice provided an acidic balance to the honey and olive oil, while the carrots and raisins kept the salad pleasant but not overly sweet. Heads up to anyone inviting me for dinner: I’m bringing this salad.

Skill Level: Beginner to intermediate. The directions are thorough and easy to follow.
This book is for: Anyone wanting to feast on beautiful pictures and try beautiful food. The recipes vary from fried street food to hefty stews to sunny salads.
Other recipes to try: Oven-roasted Vegetables, Almond Semolina Cake
The Verdict: While the Honey-Spiced Carrot Salad came together well, it was not as complete and cohesive as last week’s eggplant. For this By the Book battle, Zahav takes top prize.




Honey-Spiced Carrot Salad
4 to 6 servings

500 g. carrots, peeled and sliced
50 g. raisins
2 Tbsp. walnuts, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh coriander, plus extra leaves to garnish
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
½ tsp. allspice
2 Tbsp. honey
Juice of 1 lemon
2 tsp. olive oil

• Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and prepare a large bowl of iced water. Blanch the carrots in the boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain and place in the iced water to stop the cooking and retain the bright color.
• Meanwhile, soak the raisins in lukewarm water for 15 minutes until softened, then drain.
• In a large bowl, mix together carrot, raisins, walnuts, the chopped coriander and dill.
• Season with the cinnamon, allspice, honey, lemon, olive oil and salt, to taste. Toss all together and garnish with fresh coriander.



Meatless Monday: Shaved Zucchini Salad

Monday, July 20th, 2015



Pull together the perfect taste of summer in less than 10 minutes with this Shaved Zucchini Salad. Use a vegetable peeler to shave that bounty of garden produce into thin zucchini ribbons, then toss them with freshly shorn raw corn kernels. Whisk together a dressing of lemon juice, olive oil and a touch of honey, top with ricotta or Parmesan cheese and never let anyone know just how easy this delicious meal actually was to prepare. Get the recipe here.

-photo by Greg Rannells 

Meatless Monday: Apricot, Coconut and Mint Salad

Monday, July 6th, 2015




We love leafy greens as much as the next farmers market fanatic, but sometimes a seasonal salad doesn’t cut it come dinnertime. This cous cous-based Apricot, Coconut and Mint Salad comes together in just a few minutes, and it will satisfy even the hungriest meat-free appetites. Whisk together lime juice, olive oil and honey, then toss with prepared cous cous, slivers of dried apricots and roasted yellow pepper, toasted coconut and bright, fresh mint. Get the recipe for this simple vegetarian meal here.

-photo by Carmen Troesser

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