Surprise Pairing And A New Version Of Standby Favorite

SOMETIMES unexpected combinations transform into  fantastic pairings.

For a refreshing beet and grapefruit SURPRISE, 

Roasted Beet Salad with Grapefruit and Chive Vinaigrette

delivers TASTE, texture and punch.

 Ingredients

  • 1  large Egg (For Vinaigrette)

  • 1/4  cup White wine vinegar (For Vinaigrette)

  • 1/2  cup Chopped chives (For Vinaigrette)

  • 1/4  cup Flaxseed Oil (For Vinaigrette)

  • 1/2  cup Canola Oil

  • 1  pinch Salt (For Vinaigrette)

  • 1  pound Beets, trimmed (For Salad)

  • 1/4  cup Olive Oil (For Salad)

  • 4  cups Organic Mixed Greens (For Salad)

  • 2  large Grapefruits, segmented (For Salad)

  • 1  head Fennel, shaved or sliced thinly (For Salad)

  • 1  pinch Salt and Pepper (For Salad)

Instructions

To make the vinaigrette, put the egg, vinegar, and chives in a food processor and blend until well mixed. Combine the oils, and then slowly add them to the food processor. Blend until the mixture begins to emulsify and turn pale green. If the mixture gets too thick, add up to 1/4 cup of water. Season with salt to taste and set aside.

To make the salad, preheat the oven to 400ÅãF. Lightly toss the beets in the olive oil and salt to taste and place on a baking sheet. Cover with foil and bake for 1 hour, or until tender. Let cool and then peel and cut the beets into a large dice.

On a large plate, arrange the mixed greens, beets, grapefruit segments, and fennel. Finish with the chive vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

 Grilled Romaine Salad with Blue Cheese-Bacon Vinaigrette

 I LOVE the Blue Cheese Bacon Vinaigrette …. AND the presentation, 

including grilled romaine, takes it OVER the top.

…….a new and tastier version of spinach salad with bacon vinaigrette.

This recipe from Tracey’s culinary Adventures is easy (my favorite requirement) and delicious.

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 cup diced red onion
1/2 pound bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
3 heads romaine lettuce, cut in half lengthwise
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese (I used goat cheese instead)

Preheat grill to medium-high (you could also use an indoor grill pan). 

In a large skillet set over medium heat, cook the bacon until crispy.  Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate with a slotted spoon.  Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the fat.  Add the onion and cook until softened, stirring occasionally.  Remove to the plate along with the bacon.  Add the balsamic vinegar  and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to the skillet and cook to reduce slightly, about 2-3 minutes.  Remove the pan from the heat.

Brush the lettuce with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Grill cut-side down for about 2 minutes, or until grill marks are visible or the lettuce is slightly charred.

Place the lettuce cut-side up on a large plate (or platter).  Drizzle with the reduced balsamic vinegar then sprinkle with the cheese, bacon and onion, and garnish with freshly cracked black pepper.

 

 

*More recipes available in the category: food

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Ragin’ Cajun Chicken Plus Paper Whites

 Ragin’ Cajun Chicken Stuffed with Pepper Jack Cheese & Spinach

…..plus Paper White Fascination

I LOVE this spicy twist on a Florentine dish.  As with everything else, FLAVOR and bold taste are the ingredient CRITERION.  Pepper jack cheese easily made the ingredient cut and the homemade cajun mix provides the heat filled rub for this entree.

Ingredients:
Serves 4

Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 40 minutes

  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 oz pepper jack cheese, shredded
  • 1 c frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp Cajun seasoning – see below for a homemade Cajun spice recipe
  • 1 tbsp breadcrumbs
  • Sea salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Flatten the chicken to 1/4-inch thickness.

In a medium bowl, combine the pepper jack cheese, spinach, salt and pepper.

Combine the Cajun seasoning and breadcrumbs together in a small bowl.

Spoon about 1/4 c of the spinach mixture onto each chicken breast. Roll each chicken breast tightly and fasten with toothpicks.

Brush each chicken breast with the vegetable oil. Sprinkle the Cajun seasoning mixture evenly over all. Sprinkle any remaining spinach and cheese on top of chicken (optional).

Place the chicken seam-side down onto a tin foil-lined baking sheet (for easy cleanup).  Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

Remove the toothpicks before serving!

Homemade Cajun Seasoning Mix:

  • 3/4 tbsp paprika
  • 3/4 tsp onion salt
  • 3/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp thyme
  • 1/8 tsp oregano
  • Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container.

 

Monterey Chicken

Just HAD to SHARE this from All Things Simple.  Included is an amazing Butter Pecan Sweet Potato recipe.

This recipe is one of those semi-homemade DINNERS where the ingredient list is short, the flavor is TALL and the prep time is quick! Love it.  I would top it with some FRESHLY chopped tomatoes and a tad bit of chopped cilantro.

 

 

Decor: Paperwhites on the Dining Table….     

 

I have a SECRET obsession with Paper Whites. Tall crispy green stalks and  pop-of-white COLOR are the  lures of this little BULB. Anything would taste DELICIOUS while …gazing at the whites.

Buy them in BLOOM….or force them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How To Force Paper Whites

Paper whites are the original “Just Add Water” plant. While paperwhite bulbs can be planted in soil, more commonly they are grown in pots or dishes with some stones or marbles to anchor them in place and a little water.

  1. Select a container that is about 3 – 4 inches deep (8 – 10 cm) and that has no drainage holes. 
  2. Spread an inch or 2 of stones, marbles or even gravel, along the bottom of the container. 
  3. Position your paper white bulbs, pointed end up, on top of the stone layer. Go ahead and squeeze them in. They not only look better in a large group, the tight fit will help keep them from toppling over. 
  4. Add another layer of stones to fill in any gaps and cover the bulbs up to their shoulders. The pointed tips should still be showing. 
  5. Add water so that the level just reaches the base of the bulbs. Allowing the bottom of the bulb to sit in water will stimulate growth. Covering the entire bulb with water could cause it to rot. 
  6. The bulbs don’t need light at this point and they prefer to be kept on the cool side, at about 65 degrees F (18 degrees C.) 
  7. Check your bulbs daily to see if they need more water. 
  8. When you see roots developing, move the container to a sunny window. The sunnier the better, but try not to let them get too warm or they’ll grow leggy. 
  9. Once the plants flower, they will last longer if moved out of direct sunlight, to a cool spot with indirect or diffused light.

You can start pots of paper whites every couple of weeks, for a continuous display throughout the winter.

Although problems are rare with paper whites, one annoyance is their tendency to become top heavy and fall over. For a Quick Tip on how to solve that problem, read how to water your paper whites with alcohol to keep them from falling over.

The NEXT time you are enjoying a martini….slip a sip to your PAPER WHITES.