Posts Tagged ‘easy salad recipes’

Kachumbari Salad: A Kenyan Tomato Salad Sweet vine-ripened tomatoes, the gems of summer, make the perfect base for salads. From Kenya comes this recipe that pairs tomatoes with red onions, cilantro, chile, and lime juice. Visually attractive and packed with flavor, this salad is the perfect side dish for summer entertaining. Tonight, those incredible flavors will marry beautifully with the fish tacos I’m serving!

Kachumbari Salad
Share: The Cookbook that Celebrates Our Common Humanity

1 lb firm and ripe tomatoes, sliced or diced
1-1½ red onions, very thinly sliced
4 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 chile, sliced (optional)
1-2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Place the tomatoes into a medium salad bowl with the onions. Stir in the chopped cilantro.

2. Drizzle with the olive oil and stir in the chile, if using. Season and gradually add the lemon or lime juice to taste.

Serves 4

1. One pound of tomatoes is approximately 2.5 large tomatoes. For this recipe I used about two pounds of assorted tomatoes (cherry, heirloom, and beefsteak).

2. I cut the cherry tomatoes in half from top to bottom, but the larger tomatoes, I sliced crosswise into rounds.

3. Because I sliced them into rounds, I gently mixed the salad in a large pan instead of a bowl. This salad is attractive when arranged on a platter.

4. I used half of a red onion instead of a whole one and I’m glad I did. Even with this reduced amount, there were a lot of onions in this salad.

5. Here are some tips from Craig Kielburger, the contributor of this recipe to the cookbook: If you prefer a milder onion flavor, rinse the onion slices in hot salty water before putting them in the salad. This will ensure the onion is less harsh on the palate. Squeeze the lemon or lime juice into the salad just before serving to avoid sogginess. If the tomato and onion are chopped more finely, this recipe also works well as a homemade salsa.

6. The chile is optional, but its heat adds a nice flavor dimension to the salad.


Read Full Post »

Wait! You should think twice before you say, “Ewww . . . kale!” and snub this recipe. Try to withhold judgement until after you taste this easy-to-make and nutrient-packed salad. The earthy flavor and color of dark green kale leaves are wonderfully offset by the tropical fruit flavor and bright color of mango. And what makes this salad different from other kale salads is the massaged kale. Yes, that’s right, MASSAGED. Most of us know that a little oil and a gentle massage go a long way to relax tense muscles. Kale undergoes a similar transformation after a short and gentle massage. The tough and fibrous strips of kale become relaxed and tender. What’s not to like about eight simple ingredients that when combined together create a beautiful salad and a healthier you?

Massaged Kale Salad
Recipe courtesy of Aarti Sequeira

1 large bunch of kale, stalks removed and discarded, leaves thinly sliced
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
Kosher salt
2 teaspoons honey
Freshly ground black pepper
1 mango, diced small (about 1 cup)
Small handful toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds), about 2 rounded tablespoons

1. In large serving bowl, add the kale, half of lemon juice, a drizzle of oil and a little kosher salt. Massage until kale starts to soften and wilt, 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside while you make the dressing.
2. In a small bowl, whisk remaining lemon juice with the honey and lots of freshly ground black pepper. Stream in the 1/4 cup of oil while whisking until a dressing forms, and you like how it tastes.
3. Pour the dressing over the kale and add the mango and pepitas. Toss and serve.

Serves 4.

Linnell’s Notes:
1. The easiest way to remove stalks from kale leaves is to hold the stem end in one hand and, in one motion, pull the leaf away and down the stem with the other hand. Repeat until all stems are removed. Wash and dry leaves.
2. To cut the leaves, stack several leaves and then roll them into a cigar. Slice your kale “cigar” crosswise to form thin ribbons.
3. The lemon I used was large, so I added a little bit more honey to take away some of the tartness in the salad dressing.
4. Other fruit, such as peaches or strawberries, could easily be substituted for the mango.


Read Full Post »

Wanting to make a light pasta dish to accompany some freshly grilled fish, I prepared a simple noodle salad with subtle Asian undertones. Unlike the Shrimp and Bean-Thread Salad I posted about a while back, this noodle salad is simpler to make, because it has fewer ingredients. Although, it lacks the complexity of flavors that the Bean-Thread Salad has, it makes up for it with its clean fresh flavors and its ease of preparation. It’s a delicious side dish for grilled seafood or grilled chicken and this recipe makes enough to feed a small crowd.

Asian Noodle Salad

Dressing Ingredients:
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons sesame seed oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon Asian red chili paste
1/4 teaspoon salt

Salad Ingredients:
16 ounces dried rice noodles
1 carrot, grated
1/2 cup cilantro leaves, rough chopped
1/2 cup roasted peanuts, chopped

1. Combine salad dressing ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
2. Fill a kettle full of water and bring it to a boil. If you don’t have a kettle use a large pot to boil water.
3. Open up the package of noodles and place the noodles in a large mixing bowl.
4. Carefully pour the hot water over the noodles until they are completely submerged. After two minutes, very carefully stir the noodles to loosen up the noodle bundle. Stir periodically and make sure all noodles remain submerged.
5. When noodles are limp, taste a few to make sure they are cooked (or softened) enough. The noodles should be firm, but not hard and chewy or soft and mushy. Let soak a few minutes longer if they are not yet ready, checking them every couple of minutes.
6. When the noodles are tender, drain them in a colander and let cold water run over them.
7. After they are well-drained, pour the noodles into a bowl and immediately pour the salad dressing over them. Toss gently with your hands.
8. Add the grated carrots, chopped cilantro and chopped peanuts. Toss gently and serve.

Linnell’s Notes:
1. This salad tastes best when eaten fresh. Rice noodles tend to absorb any liquid available and then dry out. Store in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.
2. In lieu of steps 2 through 4, you can bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add the noodles and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring and checking them for the right degree of tenderness.
3. My family likes spicy food, so I either add a bit more chili sauce to the dressing mixture or I sprinkle in some red pepper flakes.
4. To make this a main dish, cooked prawns, grilled salmon, or grilled chicken breast strips can be easily tossed in during the last step.
5. Buy Asian chili paste that has chili flakes floating in it.
6. This recipe makes enough to fill a large mixing bowl.


Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: