Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Quick What's for Dinner? - Dinner Salads

Today, Lovella and Anneliese are appearing on CTV Kitchener noon news doing a cooking segment.
They will be talking about the 'Mennonite Girls Can Cook' cookbook.
Be sure to watch it if you can. We 'girls' are all so excited for them.

It looks like summer has finally arrived here in BC, so with all the fresh produce available - either from your garden or your green grocer, salads can be your answer when the question is, "Quick, What's for Dinner?"

Hoisin Shrimp Caesar Salad

Salads are only limited by your imagination. however if you're too tired to think at the end of the day, here's a few lists to help you plan a quick dinner salad.

Start with Greens - spinach, red or green leaf lettuce, romaine, butter, iceberg or a combination.

Meat or protein: sliced deli meats cut into ribbons,
cooked leftover or BBQ'd chicken,, steak or pork, thinly sliced or shredded
precooked bacon or pancetta
sliced hard boiled eggs
cheese, any kind, diced or julienned
any kind of beans (black, garbanzo, kidney...)
tinned salmon, tuna crab or chicken
shrimp or prawns or imitation crabmeat (all quick to thaw in cold water)

Vegetables: sliced or diced red/green/orange or yellow bell peppers
green onion or thinly sliced red onion
cucumbers, zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes
thinly sliced red or white or savoy cabbage
julienned or grated carrots
canned veggies - mini corn, olives, wax or green beans
frozen peas or corn, thawed

Fruits: red, black or green grapes
apples or pears, cored and sliced or shipped
melon pieces, bananas, kiwi, , pineapple, mango or papaya
orange or grapefruit segments, (fresh or canned)
fresh berries of all kinds, (frozen blueberries work too)

Extras: pomegranate seeds,
raisins or dried cranberries, dates figs,
Any kind of nuts -
candied or spiced nuts
shelled, sunflower seeds, pinenuts, toasted sesame seeds,
wonton strips, pretzels, corn chips.....
Dressings: There are excellent bottled dressings in the supermarket
or you can make your own -
Try to match the flavours in the dressing with your salad ingredients (ie: sweet with fruit, herb with veggies, creamy with meats and cheeses)

Fruit salads: On a hot day fruit salads can be refreshing.
Drizzle fruit with yogurt
Arrange fruit pieces over cottage cheese,
Spoon chopped fruit over ice cream for a special treat.

Serve your salad with: fresh bread from the bakery
your own homemade bread or rolls
Cornbread or muffins
baking powder biscuits (these take only 10 minutes in the oven)
foccacia
garlic bread
an assortment of crackers


Salad suggestions: (from Mennonite Girls Can cook blog)
Taco salad
Santa Fe Chicken Salad

Spinach Salad

Chicken Tarragon Salad
Maple Glazed BBQ Salmon salad
Wild Rice and Artichoke Chicken Salad

Rustic Chicken Caesar Salad

Tip:
If you have a few minutes, check out some of the salad recipes in the Salad Category.
Make a list of your favourites and put it up on the fridge.
Then you have a quick reference list when you need a suggestion.

There are, I know many other options - some seasonal or uniquely available in your region.
Take up the challenge and create your own signature salad.

12 comments:

  1. Im a big fan of Shrimp, so im really liking that one a lot. Richard

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  2. Thank you for such a resourceful post. Lots of good suggestions!

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  3. Just go your cookbook in the mail!!! It looks like I have lots of new recipes to try. Thanks for a nice addition to my cookbook library, 1,500 plus.

    Barbarainnc

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  4. This is really helpful ,and you do have lovey recipes Bev.

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  5. Thank you very much for the helpful information on making different kinds of Salad. I find it very hard to think of what to put in the Salads

    Thank you

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  6. Hello neighbour Bev,
    Thanks for the ideas; now I have some ideas for this evening! Hardly feel like cooking in this sunshine! Dairymary

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  7. I like your lists. Sometimes it helps to have references like this for varying summer foods.

    Jody

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  8. I have a question
    I was looking at your salad section.
    I am interested in some of the salad dressings
    How long do the dressings last for a week 10 days etc
    Could you please let know

    Thanks

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  9. Wendy, it usually depends on the ingredients and where you store them. Most dressings should be stored in the fridge - especially if they have mayonnaise or fruit in them. I would say they'd keep fine in the fridge for about 2 weeks. After that taste the dressing before you use it.

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  10. I would love to make the Hoisin Shrimp Caesar Salad....is there a recipe to go by anywhere?

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  11. Leisha - I'm so sorry, I see it's a recipe I haven't posted yet. I think I used the sauce from the Hoisin Chicken in lettuce Cups though. You'll find that recipe under the starters category.

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  12. To clarify - use the hoisin sauce for the shrimp and for the Caesar salad itself, you can use a bottled dressing or make one using your own or one of our recipes.

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