Posts filed under Salads

Home Grown Pumpkin & Local Mushroom Salad

Serves up with a Truffle Vinaigrette

Serves 8 

  1. 1 small about 1 1/2 lb sugar pumpkin or butternut squash
    (if you can’t find fresh pumpkin)
  2. 2 large shallots, sliced in rings
  3. 1 pound of meat mushrooms such as portobello,
    shiitake, or cremini, de-stemmed tops cut in half, portobello cut in strips
  4. 1/4 extra virgin olive oil
  5. s and p to taste
  6. 1 small truffle (or a bottled one if you can find it - or truffle oil)
  7. 2 tbsp of a nice balsamic vinegar (at least 15 years old)
  8. juice of one fresh lemon
  9. 1 tsp super finely minced fresh rosemary
 Musrooms! Earthy, and luxurious ... 

Musrooms! Earthy, and luxurious ... 

Combine the pumpkin, shallots, mushroom tops and oil in a bowl and toss to coat. Turn out onto a baking sheet and season with s and p to taste. put baking sheet under the broiler for about 15-20 minutes until pumpkin is slightly charred and cooked through.

You will have to turn the veggies with a spatula a few times during the cooking to help them cook evenly. When veggies cook through transfer them to a bowl.

Then, whisk the balsamic with the fresh lemon juice - if using a canned truffle, mince about 1 oz. and combine with 1 tablespoon of the truffled oil from can. Put both into the dressing. If not, add 1 tbsp olive oil and whisk. Add the rosemary. Whisk that in too and let it all sit for a minute so flavors combine. Toss the dressing in the now warm to room temp broiled veggies.

Plate at this time, a nice portion of roasted veggies on 8 plates. If using a fresh truffle, slice 4 or 5 slices on a truffle slicer over each plated salad or drizzle a small amount of truffle oil last minute over each salad and serve.

Posted on July 11, 2013 and filed under Salads.

New Fangled Cole Slaw with Grilled Peaches, Ginger and Grapefruit Mint

 Grilling is a key to bringing out rich flavors, so grill those peaches!

Grilling is a key to bringing out rich flavors, so grill those peaches!

This is my new favorite "go-to" Summertime Slaw

I was shopping for containers to plant the other day and I came across this new kind of mint I have never seen before – pink grapefruit mint.

I bought 2 containers of it after just a touch of the mint released this amazing pink grapefruit smell.  Mint can be so strong sometimes, it does not work with everything, but this one wasn’t.  The scent lingered in my brain all night. Some of my best recipes come from being kept awake with a new flavor and how to use it.  I came up with this recipe for ‘new fangled cole slaw with grilled peaches, ginger and grapefruit mint’.


  • 1 -16 oz package of  cole slaw mix or make your own
  • 1/4 cup grapefruit mint, chopped fine orchiffonade (lemon mint would work as well)
  • 2 fresh peaches sliced, grilled lightly and cubed
  • 1/3 cup light veggie oil or canola oil – organic of course
  • 1 1/2 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp  toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp hot peach pepper jelly (Stonewall Kitchen) or use hot pepper jelly
  • 3/4 cup toasted chopped pecans or pine nuts (not chopped)


1. In a bowl combine the slaw mix, mint, and the peaches.

2. In a blender or food processor add both oils, ginger, vinegar, jelly and whirl until thick and incorporated.

3. Add the sauce to the slaw mixture and toss.

I put this in the fridge for 30 minutes to blend the flavors and I added the pecans last minute tossed and served.  It was simply outrageous in flavor and it is our new go-to summer salad.  Enjoy and let me know if you have any other new twists on this very flavorful delight!!!


Posted on June 27, 2013 and filed under Salads.

Heirloom Tomato & Peach Salad with Mozarella di Bufala

This is one of my favorite recipes ever. The problem is you can only enjoy 6 months if your lucky out of the year. The tomatoes have to be ripe and the peaches have to be perfect. And it is so nice that we now can get great cheeses from Italy so fresh all the time and in regular grocery stores. I was out at this new grocery store in our area the other day and found just what I wasn't looking for. Fresh heirlooms, though I was skeptical so early in the season. Nice local peaches and Mozzarella di Bufala. I went out to my garden and picked some fresh basil and hoped for the best. It was just amazing and everyone  at the table was raving. Like I had anything to do other than grow the basil and arrange a plate. But I'll take it.

  • 6 medium size really fresh heirloom tomatoes (or nice fresh local ones would be fine)
  • 1 container (imported from Italy) Mozzarella di Bufala, its about a 6 oz ball
  • 3 medium fresh, ripe peaches, halved, pitted and sliced in 6-8 wedges each
  • 15 basil leaves
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • a really good, aged balsamic vinegar from Modena, Italy preferred
  • a nice crunchy sea salt, I used salt from Sicily
  • fresh cracked pepper
 Peaches and Fennel ... amazing!

Peaches and Fennel ... amazing!

This is so easy to do and so delicious I will be your new best friend! Slice the tomatoes in 1/4 inch slices or wedge them, up to you.  Arrange on a pretty plate and top all around with the peach wedges. Slice the mozzarella in 1/4 inch slices and lay also around the plate. Tear the basil with your hands and scatter over the salad. Dress with about 3 tbsp of olive oil and sprinkle with that love balsamic. S and P to taste and Serve away. So easy yet the flavors are amazing and delicate and then you get a bunch from the basil.

That's it. I'm going to make one right now.

Posted on May 20, 2013 and filed under Salads.

Heirloom Tomato, Grilled Watermelon, and Grilled Peach Salad with Taragon Dressing


I have a feeling this is going to be the year for amazing and fun new salad ideas. As you can see, I’ve already started and this tasty little salad is going to rock your world. Not only is it pretty with all the great color, It is high on the taste hit parade as well.  Feel free to change up the cheese to Ricotta Salata or anything you feel would suit your taste buds.  Let me know what you’ve tried, I am always interested in new ideas.


1/2 pound seedless watermelon, rind removed

1/2 pound peaches, cut in quarters and pitted

3/4 pound heirloom tomatoes (about two large tomatoes)

3 ounces feta cheese

1 sprig fresh tarragon leaves

1 tbsp champagne vinegar

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1/2 tsp sugar

Salt and Pepper to taste



1. Cut the watermelon into large, imperfect chunks
2.  Cut the peaches in quarters and discard the pit
3.  Lightly grill the watermelon and peaches so they get nice grill marks
4.  Put the fruit in a bowl after cooling or arrange them on large platter
5.  Slice the heirloom tomatoes into wedges. Combine with the fruit
6.  Crumble feta over the watermelon, peach and tomato mixture

 Full of new sweetness: the peach loves the grill!

Full of new sweetness: the peach loves the grill!


1.  In a blender add the tarragon, vinegar, oil, sugar and salt and pepper to taste, pulse till combined.>
2.  Dress salad lightly to your taste.  Serve away!!!!!

Enjoy this new fun salad
for the Summer of 2013!


Posted on May 19, 2013 and filed under Salads.