Cooking Basics

Delicious summer salad ideas

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Close up of a fresh salad
These salad ideas are a great way to enjoy summerís bounty
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Big summer salads are an easy way to combine grains, fruits, vegetables and meats in one cool and simple dish. Add whole grain rolls or breadsticks, a chilled soup, and cool sparkling water or a light wine for a compete summer meal for family or guests.

Summer Salmon Salad

Ingredients: 2 cups of small shell macaroni, cooked and drained 3-4 spring onions (green onions or scallions), chopped 1 can (15 ounces) sockeye salmon, flaked 1 package frozen peas, cooked al dente 1-2 stalks celery, chopped 1 cup mayonnaise 2 tsp. dry dill weed 1/2 tsp. white pepper 1 tsp. celery salt

Instructions: Gently mix the cooked macaroni, chopped green onions, flaked salmon, cooked peas, and chopped celery. In a small separate bowl combine the mayonnaise, dill weed, white pepper and celery salt. Mix well. Add dressing mixture to macaroni mixture, toss well and chill before serving. Cold Beef Salad


2 cups julienne strips cooked beef (use leftover steak or pot roast or buy roast beef from the deli) 2 Tbs. thinly sliced cornichons (Gherkin pickles) 1 Tbs. finely chopped onion 1 Tbs. finely chopped parsley 1/4 cup green pepper strips, cut into long thin strips 1/4 cup diced tomatoes Fleur de Sel* and freshly ground black pepper 1 bag (5 oz.) Boston lettuce leaves

For the vinaigrette:

2 Tbs. wine vinegar 6 Tbs. olive oil 1/4 tsp dry mustard soaked in 1/2 teaspoon water 1/4 tsp salt 1/8 tsp black pepper

To serve: 1. Place all the vinaigrette ingredients in a screw top jar. Screw top on tightly and shake to emulsify. Set aside. 2. In a mixing bowl, toss together the beef, cornichons, chopped onion, parsley, green pepper strips and diced tomatoes. 3. Shake the vinaigrette again and measure out 1/4 cup. Pour the 1/4 cup over the beef and mix well. 4. Use the rest of the vinaigrette to toss with the Boston lettuce.

Divide the lettuce among 4 salad plates. Mound the beef in the center of the lettuce, sprinkle with some fleur de sel and a few grinds of pepper and serve.

*Fleur de sel is hand-harvested sea salt, available in most gourmet groceries. If you can't find it in your area, use a good sea salt, preferably freshly ground. Regular table salt will not give this recipe the right flavor.

Grilled Honey Mustard Turkey Salad


1/3 cup Dijon mustard 1/3 cup orange juice 1/3 cup honey 1 lb. boneless turkey breast slices 1/2 tsp. seasoned salt 10 oz. bag baby spinach 1 cup sliced mushrooms 1 cup grape tomatoes 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese


In a small bowl, combine mustard, orange juice and honey and mix well with wire whisk to combine. Reserve 1/2 cup of this marinade, cover it and place in refrigerator.

Sprinkle turkey slices with seasoned salt and place in zip lock plastic bag.

Pour rest of marinade over turkey, close bag and let sit for 30 minutes in refrigerator.

Prepare and preheat two-sided grill. Remove turkey from marinade, discard this marinade, blot turkey slices gently with paper towels, and cook on grill for 4-6 minutes until thoroughly cooked. Remove from grill and slice into thin strips.

Toss with spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes, yellow bell pepper, and reserved 1/2 cup marinade. Sprinkle with cheese and serve immediately. You can grill the mushrooms and bell pepper on the grill too, if you wish - about 1-3 minutes or until tender. 4 servings

Grilled Chicken and Parmesan Salad


1 Envelope Good Seasons Italian Salad Dressing&Recipe Mix 1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/4 cup white vinegar 3 Tbs. water 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts 1 bag (10 oz.) mixed salad greens 1 cup cherry tomatoes cut in half 1 yellow squash, chopped 1/4 cup shaved Parmesan cheese Instructions:

Prepare salad dressing mix with oil, vinegar and water as directed on package. Pour 1/2 cup of the dressing over chicken in resealable plastic bag; seal bag. Turn bag over several times to evenly coat chicken with dressing. Refrigerate 30 min. to marinate. Meanwhile, refrigerate remaining dressing for later use.

Preheat grill to medium heat. Remove chicken from marinade; discard bag and marinade. Grill chicken 5 min. on each side or until cooked through (165įF). Slice Toss greens with tomatoes and squash; place on serving platter. Top with chicken and cheese; drizzle with remaining dressing. Add this to your list of delicious summer salad ideas. Tomato and Goat Cheese Salad

Served with micro organic basil and dressed with a lemon oil and white balsamic vinegar vinaigrette.


4 medium size ripe heirloom tomatoes (Ugly Ripe, Brandywine, Zebra, etc) 11 oz. soft goat cheese Salt and pepper to taste (Fleur de sel is great on this salad!) 2 cups white balsamic vinegar 1 cup organic micro green basil 1 cup organic micro opal basil 1/4 cup high quality lemon oil


Slice tomatoes into 4 equal slices to each tomato. Season with salt and pepper. Mold goat cheese into 12 discs slightly smaller than the tomato slices. Place a goat cheese disc on top of a tomato slice, repeating 2 more times. Top with one more tomato slice. Repeat with remaining tomatoes until you have 4 equal stacks. Cut into 4 equal wedges and place on 4 salad plates inside out to create a square.

Reduce balsamic to 1/4 cup. Drizzle over tomatoes. Toss both basils with the lemon oil, salt and pepper and place a small mound on top of each tomato stack. Drizzle more lemon oil around plate.

Here's another wonderful recipe to add to your collection of summer salad ideas:

Orange-Rosemary Vinaigrette


1/4 cup mild olive oil 2 tablespoons chicken broth, preferably homemade 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard 1/4 cup thawed frozen orange juice concentrate 2 cloves garlic, minced 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon paprika 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1/8 teaspoon black pepper 1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary leaves


Combine all ingredients well with a whisk or in a shakeable container.

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