Asian Inspired Fruit Salad

Asian Inspired Fruit SaladRecipes in this Post

I have been a fan of Chinese Chicken Salad since the 1980’s when I first had it. Everyone once in a while, I have all the ingredients to make it. This afternoon, Spane and I went and had a very filling lunch at Everest Burgers, so we didn’t want a heavy or big dinner. I asked him if salad would be good, and he said yes. Then I went to my pantry and saw that I had Mandarin oranges, I knew what to make.

This salad has everything but the chicken, and if you happen to have cooked chicken, you are more than welcome to add it to this salad. Make sure you have a sharp knife because you will be chopping the greens and the onion into small pieces.

Asian Inspired Fruit SaladYou could add other fruit to this salad as well, like lychee nuts, or even cherries. I had unsweetened coconut chips which had just enough sweetness, sweetened coconut would be too powerful, so I don’t recommend it. Please choose whichever Asian salad dressing you like, we like Girard’s Asian Dressing.

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Bread Salad

Recipes in this PostBread Salad

Sometimes, you get a large load of rich, crusty bread but can only finish part of it before it starts to dry out. What can you do with it? Well, you can make croutons, or you can make a summer favorite, Bread Salad.

There is no real “recipe” for this, put in it what you like to put in regular salads, let your imagination flow! But, I will give you the recipe for the salad I made tonight.

One thing you do have to do is use the right bread. A good crusty French bread, or a good sour dough would be ideal. It should be a whole loaf, not sliced, because you will want to cut it up yourself. Don’t be scared, it’s really easy with a good sharp knife.

A flavorful dressing is also important. The Brown Derby Dressing would be ideal, or a simple Balsamic Vinaigrette would also be good. I used Girard’s Champagne Dressing on our salad tonight for a change.

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Cobb Salad

Recipes in this PostCobb Salad

I should not even have to write this post, but considering the awful salads I have had that called themselves Cobb, I think it’s time to set the record straight.

How do I know this? I know it because I am old enough to have actually had a real Cobb Salad at the original Brown Derby in Hollywood when I was a little girl. You don’t forget things like that, especially when they are so good.

A real Cobb Salad is a chopped salad. What does chopped mean? It means small pieces, like the size of a pea. A lot of cooks think that a Cobb Salad is just a Chef’s Salad, but with specific ingredients. Well, it’s not – it’s a chopped salad, usually with bacon, blue cheese, egg, tomatoes, avocado, spring onions, and chicken all chopped up into little tiny pieces with a unobtrusive vinaigrette like the Original Brown Derby Dressing.
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Wedge Crab Salad with Louis Dressing

Wedge Crab Salad with Louis DressingRecipes in this Post

When I was a little girl, wedge salads were all the rage. I hated them because I couldn’t figure out how to eat it. Luckily for me, they came back, and I love them.

I did a big shop on Friday, and almost forgot to get something for dinner, so I picked up some crab and some asparagus. I’m not sure what I was thinking, but when the produce truck that comes to my neighborhood honked his horn, I ran out and got a nice head of iceberg lettuce to make my wedge crab salad with Louis dressing.

People confuse Louis dressing with Thousand Island and Russian dressing. It’s actually completely different, and done well, quite tasty.

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Coleslaw with Microwave Boiled Dressing

Recipes in this PostIMG_20140901_151652

To Boil or Not to Boil

The good thing about boiled dressing and cabbage is that once the hot dressing hits the cabbage, it immediately wilts it. That’s a good thing if you sometimes don’t want your coleslaw to feel like eating tasty tree trunks. The other good thing about a boiled dressing is that the coleslaw has to refrigerate to get to serving temperature, and while it’s doing that it’s absorbing all that flavor.

Coleslaw made with mayonnaise dressing is great, too, especially if you have other vegetables like carrots, or fruit, like raisins or pineapple in it. Then you don’t want to necessarily use a hot dressing. The hot dressing is also a lot richer than its cold brethren.

Too Hot to Boil Anything!

Considering it’s a holiday, I wanted to have the richness, but I also didn’t feel like standing over a hot stove. Well, I came up with a solution. The Microwave is my friend, and your coleslaw’s friend, too. Boiled Dressing without the fuss!

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Summer Bean Salad with Lemon Mayonnaise

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Hellman’s Mayonnaise in California

Hellman's in California with and Bestfoods MayonnaiseWhat!!!!! What did you say? Hellman’s Mayonnaise in California? Well, actually, no it was Hellman’s Sandwich Spread in Glendale, California.

Spane and I were at the 99 Cents Only store on our way to visit Alexandria’s Archives‘s President, and stopped at the store to get a Danish or something, and I spied these jars of Hellman’s. I was amazed, and then found a jar of Bestfoods next to it. I couldn’t help take a picture, considering that I will probably never see the two brands together in the same place, unless I take it upon myself to start rock climbing or something. Don’t get your hopes up, folks, this was a jar of Hellman’s that will expire in August, 2014, just a few weeks after this post. So, no, we won’t be buying that.

I have to say I was flabbergasted when I found Hellman’s in Glendale. I told Spane that the jar was very, very far from home. Hellman’s is typically not sold west of the Rocky Mountains, where Best Foods is sold. The ingredients on both are the same, while some people prefer Best Foods because it is perceived to have a more tangy flavor, more vinegar. Wikipedia has an interesting article about the history of the popular condiment.

Mayonnaise is a great starter for sauces, including my Summer Bean Salad with Lemon Mayonnaise. It also has a host of other uses, but we will talk about those another day.

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