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Categories: Recipe

Dish of the day / 2014.08.25

July 28, 2014

Caprese with buffalo mozzarella …

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5 Quick & Delicious Summer Salads

July 28, 2014

1. Berry Delicious Summer Salad

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Sweet, juicy blueberries are the stars of this quick-toss salad, but it’s equally good (and even more colorful) served with a mix of summer berries. Creamy gorgonzola cheese and walnuts complement the perfect mix of leafy greens. Pair with grilled beef, pork, or chicken for a simple but elegant menu that’s easy enough to serve anytime.

Ingredients
  • 8 cups mixed salad greens$
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries$
  • 1/2 cup crumbled Gorgonzola or blue cheese$
  • 1/4 cup chopped and toasted walnuts or pecans$
  • Bottled vinaigrette
Preparation
  1. Toss together first 4 ingredients; drizzle with desired amount of vinaigrette, tossing gently to coat.
  2. Note: For testing purposes only, we used Newman’s Own Light Raspberry & Walnut vinaigrette.

 

2. Potato Cobb Salad

Instead of being tossed together in a bowl, the ingredients for this colorful side salad are arranged on a platter. The potatoes can be cooked and marinated overnight – ready to assemble just before serving.

Ingredients
  • 3 pounds Yukon gold potatoes
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 (16-ounce) bottle olive oil-and-vinegar dressing, divided
  • 8 cups mixed salad greens$
  • 2 large avocados$
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 3 large tomatoes, seeded and diced$
  • 12 small green onions, sliced$
  • 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese$
  • 4 ounces crumbled blue cheese$
  • 6 to 8 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled$
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
Preparation
  1. Cook potatoes in boiling salted water to cover 30 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool slightly. Peel and cut into cubes.
  2. Sprinkle potatoes evenly with 3/4 teaspoon salt. Pour 1 cup dressing over potatoes; gently toss. Set aside remaining dressing. Cover potato mixture; chill at least 2 hours or overnight.
  3. Arrange salad greens evenly on a large serving platter. Peel and chop avocados; toss with lemon juice.
  4. Arrange potatoes, avocados, tomatoes, and next 4 ingredients in rows over salad greens. Sprinkle with pepper. Serve with remaining dressing.

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3. Lemon-Basil Shrimp Salad

Don’t skip the fresh lemon rind and juice in the lemon-basil marinade—it’s what makes this salad recipe special. These shrimp also make a terrific appetizer. The shrimp and dressing, as well as the Parmesan Baskets, can all be made a day ahead.

Ingredients
  • 3 pounds unpeeled, cooked large shrimp$
  • 1 large red onion, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced$
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced$
  • Lemon-Basil Marinade
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 16 cups salad greens$
  • 8 Parmesan Baskets (optional)
  • Fresh Lemon Vinaigrette
Preparation
  1. Peel shrimp, and devein, if desired. Place shrimp and next 4 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic freezer bag. Seal and chill 8 hours or up to 24 hours, turning bag occasionally. Stir in basil 1 hour before serving. Drain and discard marinade just before serving.
  2. Divide greens evenly between Parmesan Baskets or serving bowls; arrange drained shrimp mixture evenly over lettuce. Serve with Fresh Lemon Vinaigrette.

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4. Mustard Dill Tortellini Salad Skewers

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These festive party pick-ups get a quick start with refrigerated cheese tortellini. If you’re short on time, simply toss the ingredients together in a pretty bowl and set out some forks.

Ingredients
  • 1 (9-oz.) package refrigerated cheese tortellini
  • 1 (8-oz.) package frozen sugar snap peas
  • 68 (4-inch) wooden skewers
  • 1 pt. grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • Mustard-Dill Vinaigrette*
Preparation
  1. Cook tortellini according to package directions. Rinse under cold running water.
  2. Place sugar snap peas in a small bowl; cover with plastic wrap. Microwave at HIGH 2 minutes. Let stand, covered, 2 minutes. Rinse under cold running water.
  3. Thread each skewer with 1 sugar snap pea, 1 tortellini, and 1 tomato half. Place skewers in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish. Pour Mustard-Dill Vinaigrette over skewers, turning to coat. Cover and chill 4 hours. Transfer skewers to a serving platter; discard any remaining vinaigrette.
  4. *1 (12-oz.) bottle light Champagne vinaigrette may be substituted. For testing purposes only, we used Girard’s Light Champagne Dressing.

 

5. Grilled Peach and Mozzarella Salad

Ingredients
  • 5 peaches (not white)$
  • 3 green onions, sliced$
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest$
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice$
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons tequila (optional)$
  • 1/3 cup olive oil$
  • Vegetable cooking spray
  • 1 (6-oz.) package watercress or baby arugula, thoroughly washed$
  • 3/4 pound fresh mozzarella, cut into 16 (1/4-inch) slices
  • Garnish: fresh cilantro sprigs
Preparation
  1. Peel and chop 1 peach. Cut remaining 4 peaches into 28 (1/4-inch-thick) rounds, cutting through stem and bottom ends. (Cut peaches inward from sides, cutting each side just until you reach the pit. Discard pits.)
  2. Process chopped peach, green onions, next 7 ingredients, and, if desired, tequila in a food processor 10 to 15 seconds or until smooth. Add oil, and pulse 3 to 4 times or until thoroughly combined.
  3. Coat cold cooking grate of grill with cooking spray, and place on grill. Preheat grill to 350° to 400° (medium-high). Brush both sides of peach rounds with 1/3 cup peach dressing.
  4. Grill peach rounds, covered with grill lid, over 350° to 400° (medium-high) heat 3 to 5 minutes on each side or until grill marks appear.
  5. Arrange watercress evenly on 4 plates. Alternately layer 4 grilled peach rounds and 4 cheese slices over watercress on each plate. Top each with 3 more peach rounds. Drizzle with remaining peach dressing. Garnish, if desired.
  6. Grilled Peach-and-Feta Salad: Preheat oven to 350°. Arrange 1/4 cup pecans, chopped, in a single layer in a shallow pan. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until toasted and fragrant, stirring after 5 minutes. Reduce peaches from 5 to 4, and reduce salt to 1/2 tsp. Substitute 8 cups loosely packed Bibb lettuce leaves (about 6 oz.; 1 to 2 heads of lettuce) for watercress and 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese for mozzarella cheese. Peel and chop 1 peach. Cut each of remaining 3 peaches into 8 wedges. Proceed with recipe as directed in Steps 2 through 4, decreasing grilling time for peach wedges to 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until grill marks appear. Divide Bibb lettuce and 4 cooked bacon slices, halved crosswise, among 4 plates or shallow bowls. Top with grilled peach wedges. Sprinkle with feta cheese and pecans. Serve with dressing. Makes 4 servings; Prep: 25 min., Bake: 10 min., Grill: 6 min.
  7. Note: You can also use a grill pan to get those beautiful grill marks on the peaches.

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