Monday, July 23, 2012

Favorite Creamy Dressing (for Coleslaw, Potato Salad, Chicken Salad, etc.)

I'm finally getting around to posting my favorite dressing. This is the dressing I use whenever I need a creamy dressing for salad: potato salad, coleslaw, chicken salad, caesar salad, etc. You can play it up very easily too by adding fresh, chopped or dried herbs for a fresh take, or add curry or garlic powder for a more savory dressing. Sometimes I want it a little sweeter, so I just up the agave or honey by another tablespoon (or add a few drops of liquid stevia). It is so versatile!

The secret here is the milk. It is a secret my grandma shared with me about her famous potato salad. She says you need the milk to thin it out and make it really smooth. I agree with her, and have been making it this way (with the milk) ever since. If you don't have regular cow's milk on hand (we are now so thankful to have a supply of fresh raw cow's milk every week!), you can use almond milk in its place.

I hope you like this dressing as much as I (and my family) do.

Favorite Creamy Dressing

1/4 cup mayonaise
1/4 cup plain yogurt
2 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon agave or honey
salt, pepper

Whisk all ingredients in the order listed in a small bowl until creamy consistency is reached. Makes about 3/4 cup of dressing. Pour over your salad of choice (see above for ideas).

Monday, July 9, 2012

Black Bean Pineapple Salsa

I'm super excited to be back blogging again. I have been out of blogging commission lately. We've had some ups and downs with our most recent home remodeling projects, and a few vacations in the mix over the last few months, all of this contributing to a schedule that has been anything but predictable. I guess with all of that going on, I sort of lost the momentum to record my recipe happenings.

Oh, but I have been busy in the kitchen! I've had a lot of inspiration as of late, with the bounty of fresh produce at my fingertips due to this amazing summer weather. My new CSA is showing a very promising harvest this year. My anticipation takes flight on Thursday afternoons when I get to pick up the week's share. The last few weeks we've had a wonderful supply of green onions, and I've been using them in darn near everything, from salads to burgers to kabobs to salsas (see below).

I had been ruminating about this black bean pineapple salsa idea for over a week, thoughtfully organizing its contents in my mind. I finally decided to put it all together the other night, and the results were even better than I expected. I mean, this is good stuff. Perfect for those summertime BBQs.

Black Bean Pineapple Salsa

1 15 oz. can or 2 cups cooked black beans, rinsed
1 cup pineapple
1/2 of a red pepper
1 whole green onion (both white and green parts)
1/2 cup cilantro

1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon raw honey or agave
salt, pepper (a couple of good cranks on the grinder)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

Place black beans in a medium bowl. Chop pineapple and red pepper into bite sized pieces and add to bean bowl. Chop white bulb of onion and thinly slice green tops of onion and also add to bean bowl. Mince cilantro and sprinkle on top.

In a separate, smaller bowl, combine mustard, lime juice, honey, and salt and pepper, and whisk to combine. Slowly add EVOO in a steady stream, whisking constantly until emulsified.

Pour dressing over black bean mixture and stir to combine.