Mixed Greens with Goat Cheese and Orange -Fennel seed Vinaigrette

Salads are great any time of year, especially with the availability of pre washed salad mixes, just be sure the salad is really fresh with no rotten leaves, which can spoil your whole salad. The combination here of fresh orange segments and goat cheese with a light vinaigreete makes it perfect as an accompiniment to an entree or as a light lunch.

Serves 6

 8 oz mixed greens , washed and spun dry

2 large navel oranges ,rinsed

1 tbs white wine vinegar

1 1/2 tsp fennel seeds ,coarsely chopped

Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil (I USE MONINI , FRUTTATO)

1/4 lb creamy goat cheese

Put greens in a large salad bowl .Finely grate the zest of 1 orange and put it in a small bowl.

Slice ends of both oranges with a small ,sharp knife. Stand the fruit on one of its cut endsand slice off the skin in strips. . Working over a medium bowl , cut the segments free from the membrane, letting each segment fall into the bowl as you go. Remove any seeds from the segments. Squeeze the membranes to extract the juice ,you will need 3 tbs juice for the vinaigrette.

Add the juice to the bowl with the zest , vinigar and fennel seeds. Season with 1/2 tsp salt and several grinds of pepper to taste.

Add the orange segments to the bowl of mixed greens. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and toss. Crumble half of the goat cheese over the top and toss again to mix.

Portion the salad among 6 salad plates and crumble the remaining cheese over the salads. Serve.


Saffron _Roasted Potato and Fennel Salad

The Ritz Carlton in Chicago used to serve this simply delicious salad. I found it so different from the traditional paring of these two humble vegetables,combining it with Saffron took this to a whole new level. The beauty about this salad is that it can be made up to 4 hours ahead,and dare I say it,it tastes even better for the resting.

serves 4

11/2 lbs medium -siz red potatoes (unpeeled) each cut into 8 wedges.

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried crumbled

2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary or 1/2 teaspoon dried,crumbled

1/2 teaspoon saffron threads,crumbled

1/2 cup olive oil

1 fennel Bulb,trimmed ,sliced

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Preheat oven to 400 *F. Combine first 5 ingredients in medium bowl. Mix in 1/4 cup oil. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer mixture to baking pan. Cover and bake for  15 minutes. uncover,stir potatoes and bake until tender,about 20 minutes more. transfer mixture to bowl  and cool.

Mix fennel,lemon juice and 1/4 cup oil with potatoes. Season with salt and pepper. (can be prepared 4 hours ahead,let stand at room temperature).

Allen Prunty’s Jalapeno Potato salad

It is always a challenge to find a recipe for potato salad that is not heavy or laden with the classic mayonnaise. I recieved this recipe from one of my cooking groups,so I do not personally know Allen Prunty,but I must admit it got great elements like Feta cheese and olives making it almost a complete meal or light lunch.

4 large potatoes,peeled and cubed

31/2 oz can pitted black olives,drained

1/4 cup dijon mustard

1/4 cup small bunch scallions,thinly sliced

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

2 cloves garlic,crushed

6 oz feta cheese ,crumbled

1/4 teaspoon salt

4 jalapeno peppers,seeded and chopped

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/2 cup olive oil

Place potatoes in a 3 -quart saucepan or dutch oven and pour in cold water to cover. Bring to a boil,reduce heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes or till potatoes are tender. Drain.

Meanwhile,in a large bowl,combine mustard,vinegar,garlic,salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in oil. add potatoes,olives,scallions,feta cheese and peppers. Toss to mix well. serve chilled at room temperature.

Best if chilled for an hour and a half or more before eating.

Roasted Beet and Portabello Mushroom Salad

As a vegetarian I am often at a loss to find a dish that would satisfy all my needs. Then I stumbled upon this salad from the Pairs Parkside cafe in St.Helena ,California. It is so satisfying with nuts,goat cheese and loads of Fresh basil. It is not only delicious but visually a beauty to behold.Next time you’re in the mood for good looking soul nourishing food, give this salad a try.

Serves 4

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup walnut oil

1/4 cup sherry wine vinegar

3 large beets,peeled ,each cut into 8 wedges

2 large portobello mushrooms,cleaned,stemmed

8 cups mixed baby greens

4 oz soft fresh goat cheese,crumbled

1/2 cup chopped walnuts,toasted

Combine 1/2 cup basil leaves and 1/4 cup vegetable oil in a blender and puree till almost smooth.Add walnut oil and vinegar and blend well. Transfer to a bowl,season with salt and pepper. (may be prepared and refridgerated 1 day ahead).

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat remaining half cup vegetable oil in a heavy medium oven proof skillet over medium heat. Add beets and stir to coat. Place mushrooms in medium baking dish. Pour 1/4 cup cup viniagrette over. turn to coat

Place mushrooms in medium baking dish. Pour 1/4 cup vinaigrette over. Turn to coat. Transfer skillet and baking dish to oven. Bake mushrooms until tender about 25 minutes. Remove mushrooms from oven. Tent with foil to keep warm. Continue roasting beets until tender. stirring occassionally,about 20 minutes. Remove beets from oven. Mix 1/2 cup sliced basil into beets. Cut each mushroom into 8 wedges. Season both mushrooms and beets with salt and pepper.

Place greens in a large bowl and toss with remaining vinagrette to coat. Divide among 4 plates. Sprinkle with goat cheese and half of walnuts. Divide beets and mushrooms among salads. Sprinkle with remaining walnuts and serve.

Barbecued pork, cashew,and herb salad

This delicious Thai salad makes a great meal coupled with a bowl of rice or noodles. I find this a quick and easy meal if I purchase some barbecue pork from a chinese restaurant or any store in China town really. This is another great recipe from Wendy Hutton.

51/2 oz barbecue pork slices, cut into narrow strips

1 cup raw cashews toasted in a wok

2-3 shallots , thinly sliced

1 stem of lemon grass, tender part on , finely minced

1-2 stalks celery, preferably Chinese, cut into 3/4 inch pieces

1/3 cup corriander leaves, chopped

1/3 cup mint, chopped

1 spring onion,thinly sliced

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 tablespoon fish sauce

1/2 -1 teaspoon crushed dried chili flakes

Place all ingredients into a salad bowl.

Toss well and serve immediatly along with a bowl of steamed rice or noodles.

Asian Chicken Salad with Wasabi Dressing

I was just looking for a new , spicy salad to serve the family for dinner when I stumbled upon this recipie in the Food and Wine magazine. It is super easy and delicious…and oh watch out when the Wasabi hits you.

Serves 4

4 skinless , boneless chicken breast halves (13/4 lbs)

1/2 cup Mayonnaise

1/4 cup rice vinegar

21/2 tablespoons wasabi powder

11/2 teaspoons sesame oil

11/2 tablespoons water

Kosher salt and Freshly ground pepper

2 heads Boston lettuce torn into bite-size pieces

1 large Asian pear- halved cored and thinly sliced

1/2 seedless cucumbers, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced on the bias

2 scallions,white and green parts, thinly sliced

1 cup mung bean sprouts

1/2 cup roasted wasabi peas, coarsley chopped

In a large saucepan , cover the chicken breasts with water and bring to a gentle simmer.Cook over moderately low heat until the chicken is white throughout, about 12 minutes. Transfer poached chicken breasts to a plate and let stand till cooled slightly, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk mayonnaise with rice vinegar, wasabi powder ,asian sesame oil and 11/2 tablespoons of waterand season with salt and pepper.

In a serving bowl, toss the lettuce with the asian pear slices, cucumber, scallions, bean sprouts and 2/3 cups wasabi dressing. Slice the chicken breasts crosswise 1/4 inch thick and lay slices on top of the salad. Poon the remaining wasabi dressing over the chicken breasts , sprinkle with the chopped wasabi peas and serve at once.

Blue Cheese Coleslaw

3 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar

2 tablespoons finely chopped Red Onion

1 tablespoon sugar

3/4 teaspoon Celery seeds

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon dry mustard

1/4 teaspoon feshly ground pepper

1 clove garlic,minced

1/4cup vegetable oil 1 pound cabbage , finely shredded, soaked in ice water for 1 hour, Drained and dried.

1 (4 oz) package crumbled blue cheese

Combine first 8 ingredients in a small bowl. Add oil in a slow, steady stream, stirring constantly with a wire whisk. Cover and chill at least 1 hour.

Combine cabbage and blue cheese, cover and chill 1 hour.

Drizzle vinegar mixture over cabbage mixture. Toss gently and serve immediately

Serves 6


jamie Baur