Soup and Salad

Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Lime Agave Vinaigrette

I’m usually surrounded by people who adore food but I do have a few picky eater friends and family. Brandon, you know who I mean! Well this salad is quite the little eye catcher so when I was having this for lunch one day, it attracted the attention of my dear friend Brandon, the aforementioned picky eater. I must say he was intrigued and I asked him if he’d like to give it a taste. I think the combination of flavors and textures is what wows you and it was enough for him to give a slight nod and say, “I’d eat that salad”. His wife Kathy could not believe he said that because squash is on the Do Not Eat List! Continue reading

Baby Kale Salad with OJ Yogurt Dressing

I really like Kale in most forms. Roasted, shredded in a salad with other greens and cabbage, kale chips, in a soup but sometimes a plain kale salad can taste ans smell a bit like a freshly mowed lawn! If I am going to use kale in a salad alone then I like to use baby kale leaves. They are so tender and the flavor is much more subtle. Continue reading

Ironside Caesar Salad Dressing

If you don’t ask, you won’t receive! My husband and I were in San Francisco for the Christmas holidays and had dinner at Ironside West Coast BBQ in SoMa (South of Market) as soon as we hit the City. One of the many things I love about San Francisco is that you can wander around almost any corner and find a pretty darn good restaurant or even a gem. Ironside was just that. They serve American-style comfort food, the menu is eclectic and the chef has put his own special touch on each dish that makes them a standout. My Caesar Salad was the best ever! I asked the waiter if the chef would share his recipe for the dressing and sure enough, I got it! Score!! Continue reading

Winter Salad with Cranberries and Spicy Pecans

Harvest Salad 
I make this salad a lot during the holidays and on through winter. I will be serving this salad with our Christmas dinner so I made a batch of spicy candied pecans this weekend and stored them in the freezer. Just lay them on the counter an hour before serving so they can defrost. The combination of the spice from the pecans, the sweet tartness from the apples, and the zingy of the gorgonzola with the balsamic dressing is an amazing flavor explosion in your mouth!

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Comfort in a Bowl!

Comfort food takes on many forms and being an Irish girl, for me, it is usually potatoes! But this time it is lentils!
The evenings are getting cool even in San Diego and one of the first soups I think to make is a recipe from Ina Garten. It is simple, flavorful and amazingly low fat considering that is not what Ina is known for.  I don’t drizzle the olive oil on at the end and add more red wine. A personal preference. Serve this with crusty bread like Pain Rustic and a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon and this meal will warm the cockles of any chilly heart.

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M’m! M’m! Good!

When I was a child, I loved to sing the Campbell’s Soup Song, dancing all over the kitchen in anticipation of my cup of soup! My mom sent away for the official soup cup and that was the only way to have soup!
Now I prefer a more grown up version of this same satisfying tomato soup than when I was a child. You will still hear me singing that familiar song in the kitchen as I cut heirloom tomatoes, onions and garlic to roast in the oven. My idea of a grilled cheese sandwich to go with it has evolved too.
I hope these recipes will have you singing: “M’m! M’m! Good! M’m! M’m! Good! That’s what homemade soups are, M’m! M’m! Good!”

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Kicked Up Couscous Tabbouleh

Where’s the bulgur?  I really thought I had some from the last time I made Tabbouleh but there wasn’t a kernel of cracked wheat to be found and I was really craving this light, refreshing salad. Not to worry, Couscous to the rescue! It plays in beautifully with the Mediterranean theme and it could not have been better. Being creative with the ingredients you have is what makes cooking so much fun! 

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