Salad

Arugula Salad with Cannellini Beans and Prosciutto de Parma

Posted by Natalie in Recipes, Salad

ArugulaSaladFINAL 1024x576 Arugula Salad with Cannellini Beans and Prosciutto de Parma

This is a light but satisfying dinner, while it may not be the most kid friendly meal it’s an easy one to whip up for parents who eat after their kids are in bed. The nice thing about this salad is it feels sort of fancy, kind of like eating in your favorite little Italian restaurant without ever leaving the comfort of your home. Open a nice bottle of chardonnay and make a few crostini’s and this could become a tradition in your household like it has in ours.

This is a sample recipe from a downloadable collection I created over at Pigs and Piglets. Come on over and download your free copy today!

pf button Arugula Salad with Cannellini Beans and Prosciutto de Parma

Cherry Tomato, Basil and Brie Panzanella Salad

Posted by Natalie in Appetizer, Recipes, Salad, Vegetables, Vegetarian

DSC03519 Cherry Tomato, Basil and Brie Panzanella Salad

I’ve gone a little tomato crazy this year. I’m finding myself literally surrounded by tomatoes of all varieties and I only have myself to blame for it. As I may have mentioned before we receive more than we can eat in tomatoes each week from my mother-in-law and with many failed attempts at refusing her generous offers, because she really gives us way more than we could possibly eat, we gave up.

You would think that this constant supply of free tomatoes would extinguish any temptation to buy other available varieties in the market.

Nope, unlike most people who find themselves in an over abundance of any one thing, I don’t seem to know when to stop. You see, its tomato season in Vancouver and we have all kinds of amazing otherwise unavailable varieties like heirlooms and Okanagan Field tomatoes (still a few more weeks for these but I’m anticipating!). I wait all year for good Okanagan tomatoes I still think they’re the best in the world. How would it be possible for me to pass these up?

In a moment of panic, upon realization of my dilemma, I have come to the conclusion that we will be eating a lot of tomato based meals in the near future, at least until the Okanagan tomatoes are through. I’m OK with that for now. I promise I will exercise some restraint and not post exclusively tomato recipes for the rest of the summer.

pf button Cherry Tomato, Basil and Brie Panzanella Salad

Farmers Market Greens with Anchovies and Sesame Spelt Croutons

Posted by Natalie in Appetizer, Recipes, Salad, Vegetables

Creat22 Farmers Market Greens with Anchovies and Sesame Spelt Croutons

Saturday lunch during the spring and summer months is my favorite meal of the week. It rivals even the prized boozy Sunday night dinners at my parents place. Though arguably lighter and without the wine parings these lunches are always pretty fantastic and inspired by the farmers market. They are also extremely simple, usually no more than just a few ingredients.

I had been meaning to write up one of these for some time now so I’m glad I’m finally getting to it. It might become a tradition, well see. This week, like most, I was drawn to the greens and decided to whip up a salad from a mix of pea shoots, pepper crest and another delicate green that I think was called something like Cresh. I’ll confirm that next week. Regardless though the result was pure perfection. The sweetness of the greens with the salt of the anchovies was amazing and surprisingly these greens though delicate were not overpowered by the anchovies. I was pretty happy with myself about that.

pf button Farmers Market Greens with Anchovies and Sesame Spelt Croutons

Quinoa, Garbanzo, and Spinach Salad with Smoked Paprika Dressing

Posted by Natalie in Gluten Free, Recipes, Salad, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Quinoa3COPY Quinoa, Garbanzo, and Spinach Salad with Smoked Paprika Dressing

There are many things I love about quinoa but the best thing by far is that it fills you up for a long long time. I’m not sure exactly why that is, someone mentioned to me recently that they thought quinoa contained more protein than other grains, I’m going to run with that theory as it makes perfect sense to me.

So I’ve gradually started to make quinoa in the place of other grains and pastas. I never thought it would stick for more than maybe a few dinners as I was anticipating serious opposition from my husband. If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s to never take rice away from an Indian! Not that I was actually trying to make him stop eating rice, I was just trying to find something that we could occasionally replace the all the basmati rice with.

Have you ever had basmati rice at an Indian restaurant? Or maybe you have a fabulous Indian cook in the family too? Ever wondered why the rice is so freaking never-want -to-eat-anything-else-EVER-again good? I’m talking about the kind of rice that makes you completely forget about that incredible piece of naan bread laying next to your plate AND the butter chicken you ordered.

Can you guess the answer?

pf button Quinoa, Garbanzo, and Spinach Salad with Smoked Paprika Dressing

Shaved Asparagus Salad

Posted by Natalie in Appetizer, Recipes, Salad, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Asperagus1 Shaved Asparagus Salad

This salad was one of those unplanned surprises. I had intended on using up all of the asparagus I had purchased from the Farmers market in my chicken salad and was a bit alarmed when I realized I would only need about half. It was one of those weeks where I had planned almost every meal and I absolutely hate the possibility of having something go to waste.

Fortunately, being the over-eaters that we are, it wasn’t particularly difficult to find a way to add an additional course into one of our meals. Never is come to think about it. This might be the reason why I am not fitting into my jeans the way I used to and have been wearing leggings almost exclusively for the past month. I might have to look into that. Oh well! Never trust a skinny cook, right?

I’ve been seeing all kinds of shaved asparagus salads over the past month and so I was immediately drawn to this when trying to think of creative ways to use up the rest of mine. Seriously though, this salad is another one of those extremely easy ways to impress. Aesthetically its almost perfect and will take you about 10 minutes to prepare. Also, the taste of raw asparagus, thinly shaved may even have the power to win over those asparagus skeptics in your life. I know it did with mine.

pf button Shaved Asparagus Salad

Heirloom Tomato Salad with Fresh Pea Shoots

Posted by Natalie in Appetizer, Gluten Free, Recipes, Salad, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Heirlooms31 Heirloom Tomato Salad with Fresh Pea Shoots

After 2 weeks of eating white bread for almost every meal, I haven’t been able to eat anything but fresh vegetables since I got home. I know it seams a bit simple to be posting a recipe as basic as an heirloom tomato salad, but this is what I’ve been eating so tough! Ha! No in all seriousness there were some amazing looking heirloom tomatoes at the farmers market this morning and I just wasn’t strong enough to leave without a few of them. For the most part I’m powerless against these, when I see some good ones I just can’t walk away.

This salad is so simple and really needs nothing aside from some ripe heirloom tomatoes and maybe a bit of olive oil and some sea salt. I added in the pea shoots and thought the sweetness really complemented these amazing subtle tomatoes, but of course they aren’t necessary.

pf button Heirloom Tomato Salad with Fresh Pea Shoots

Celery Root Slaw

Posted by Natalie in Appetizer, Mexican, Recipes, Salad, Sweet, Vegetables, Vegetarian

CeleryRoot Celery Root Slaw


This is the second celery root slaw recipe I’ve written about. I guess it goes without saying that I’m quite fond of this root. While I’ve made it as I would any other slaw – a side to a summer BBQ type meal or just by itself -  these days I have an obsession with celery root slaw paired with tacos.

From fish to pork tacos there’s something about celery root that  is a refreshing change from your everyday cabbage slaw. Now don’t all you slaw lovers get your knives in a bunch over that last statement. I have nothing against cabbage based saws, in fact on the contrary I love them. I also think the pairing of cabbage and tacos is a great one, it is a classic after all but lets keep an open mind shall we?

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Arugula Salad with Cumin Seed Dressing

Posted by Natalie in Recipes, Salad, Vegetables, Vegetarian

Arugula Salad4 Arugula Salad with Cumin Seed Dressing

I don’t know about you, but I have an extremely hard time straying away from my everyday salad dressing for my everyday salad. For the past 10 years or so I have been simply mixing some good olive oil with a squeeze of lemon juice, a smashed garlic clove and sea salt and after allowing the garlic to infuse the oil for a few minutes, tossing this with whatever greens I have on hand.

Easy and delicious.

The simplicity of this dressing has always pleased me. It’s easy but don’t be fooled into thinking this makes it ordinary in any way. The only thing you have to remember is to use good olive oil and not be afraid to season it with sea salt. I won;t get started on this last point. This dressing gets all sorts of complements too, which is even more satisfying because when someone asks you what is on this fabulous salad dressing you can simply say ” just a little olive oil and lemon juice” and you wouldn’t be stretching the truth too much.

pf button Arugula Salad with Cumin Seed Dressing

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