Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Three Unusual Vinaigrette Recipes for Summer



Salad is a meal favorite in our household in the summer.  Not only because it is cool and light, but because it will have all kinds of fresh vegetables in it from the garden.  Since we have so many salads, I like to have a variety of salad dressings so we don't get tired of eating veggies and greens.


Today I want to share with you three of my favorite vinaigrette salad dressing recipes.  They are not just your same ole, same ole!  They are unique and unusual flavors in the salad dressing world!  One thing about making vinaigrettes is that you have to tailor them to your own taste.  More vinegar if you like tart, more honey or agave if you want it more sweet, and so on.  This is one of the best things about making your own salad dressing.  You can truly make it to your own taste.  Just don't forget to write it down once you get your perfect blend!


Dressing Bottle

Spicy Mustard Vinaigrette 


Ingredients:

  • 1 small clove of garlic minced
  • 4 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
  • 2  teaspoons spicy brown mustard
  • 2/3 cup oil (your choice, I use vegetable)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of dried parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions


In a clean jar or small bowl add the vinegar, garlic, mustard and mix well
Slowly add the oil while either whisking or blending on medium speed
Add the parsley, OId bay, thyme, salt and pepper
Makes 1 cup and will keep in the fridge for up to a month


Sriracha Hot and Sweet Vinaigrette


Ingredients:


Directions:


In a small mason jar combine the soy sauce, pepper, parsley, vinegar, oil, 1 teaspoon of sriracha and 1 tablespoon agave
Secure lid on jar and shake well. 
Add sriracha sauce and agave 1/2 teaspoon at a time until you attain your preferred amount of heat and sweet.
Make sure to shake the jar vigorously when you are adding to test the flavor.
Shake well before using
Keeps in the refrigerator for about two weeks


I prefer to use agave nectar over honey because it will tone down the tartness and heat without changing the flavor.  Some people like the taste of honey in this dressing, you will have to test each to find out your preference.  If you like a lot of heat and a really "in your face" flavor, you can make this vinaigrette without using any type of sweetner.  It is pretty hot, but you can tone down the heat by adding a few more tablespoons of oil.  This recipe is really an individual taste type of thing.  The way you like it may not be the way I would.


Honey Orange Vinaigrette


Ingredients:

Citrus Zester
  • 2/3 cup orange juice
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 to 2 tablespoon honey (depending on how sweet you like it)
  • 2 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

Instructions:


If you prefer a smooth dressing, puree ingredients in a blender, but if you prefer more texture, simply whisk
Store in the refrigerator with a tight fitting lid for up to a week


Unsure How to Zest?  See the Video Below:



Don't be afraid to experiment, you may end up with something delicious!  If you have a salad dressing that you really love, please share it in the comments.


Jade    :)


If you want more vinaigrette recipes, this is a great cookbook!


64 recipes!


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Image Credit:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/revjim5000/3328739198/sizes/l
The rest by author

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Fresh Cucumber Dip



A "Using Your Harvest" Recipe

Summer is finally here!  All my vegetables have been planted, and every day I watch them grow.  It is a nice feeling to see food growing from your own labor and knowing that you will be enjoying them in only a matter of weeks.  In a month or two, the cucumbers will begin to ripen.  First one or two, then ten, twenty, thirty......and then suddenly you are drowning in a storm of cucumbers.  You eat them in salad, you make pickles, you make relish, you give them to neighbors, friends.......pretty soon you are giving them to strangers on the street!  Anything to get rid of the mountain of cukes you pick every day.


Well, ok, this may be a bit of a dramatic narrative, the simple fact is, anyone that grows cucumbers knows that you always have more than you can eat, can, and give away.  This is why I am always on the lookout for cucumber recipes.  This dip is one of my favorites.  I have tweeked it over the last couple years and now I feel it is perfect!  But feel free to add or subtract ingredients to your taste.  Experimenting with recipes is part of the fun!


Ingredients:


  • 2 medium cucumbers or 6 small 
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh minced dill
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 teaspoons of minced onion


Directions:


Peel the cumcumbers, slice lengthwise and scoop out the seeds with a spoon, then grate using large hole side of the grater
Spread the grated cucumber on two layers of paper towel on a cookie sheet and cover with another two layers of paper towel and press to remove as much moisture as possible.
Remove top layer of paper towel and put aside to air dry
In a medium bowl (with a lid) combine sour cream, mayo, olive oil, vinegar, garlic, onion and seasoned salt. Do Not Add Dill!
Put both the covered bowl and the cookie sheet of cucumber into the refrigerator and let chill for at least two hours.  I usually leave mine in overnight.
Remove the cucumber from the refrigerator, and blot to remove any remaining moisture
Add cucumber to the mixture in the bowl and stir
When completely mixed, add dill and stir to combine

Serve immediately.


I serve mine with crispy baked pita chips.  You can make these on your own, or you can buy Stacy's.  You really do need to drain and blot the cucumbers as the recipe calls for.  If you don't, your dip will be full of liquid and it will separate and look curdled.  It is also important that you not add the dill to the dip until just before you serve it.  If you add it with the rest of the ingredients, it will take over the taste of the dip and dill is all you will taste.  Adding it just before serve it will allow it to be an accent flavor to the cucumber and makes it even more delicious!


            Stacy's Pita Chips

I have tried putting other things in the dip, like diced green pepper, grated carrots, or diced celery, but I didn't like how it changed the flavor.  This recipe is perfect as it is!

Have a great weekend and Happy Summer!


Jade    :)

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Image Credit:  

https://www.flickr.com/photos/usdagov/35405603825/sizes/l  

https://www.flickr.com/photos/itineranttightwad/3694711149/sizes/o/

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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Devilish Delight Cookies





Welcome to my new Recipe Blog.  If you have any requests, e mail me!


If you are looking for a quick and easy way to whip up some cookies, this recipe is perfect for you. All it takes is 4 ingredients, cake mix, oil, eggs and vanilla. That's all, and they cook in less than 15 minutes. You could be serving these fresh chocolate cookies in less than an hour!


Ingredients: 



Directions:


Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray
Stir cake mix, oil, eggs and vanilla with spoon until it is the consistency of dough
Place the bowl of dough into the refrigerator for about 20 minutes so it can harden up a bit
Roll the cookies into 1 inch balls and flatten slightly with the palm of your hand
Place on the cookie sheet 1 to 2 inches apart
(I usually sprinkle a bit of white sugar on top, just to make them sparkle)
Bake about 10 minutes, you may need a minute more or less depending on your oven
Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes, then place them on a cooling rack to cool completely before storing them in an airtight container.


Makes about 2 to 2 1.2 dozen cookies


I have also made these with chopped pecans and that is a really delicious addition.
Enjoy!


Jade    :)


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Image by author