Jul 25, 2010

Heirloom Tomato Salad, Birthday's and Babies

I could write a love song to Heirloom Tomatoes. I seriously LOVE them! My dad is growing me some in his garden this year---and I can't wait for my delivery next weekend. They cost a ridiculous amount at the grocery store---but it's something worth splurging for. Brian who normally hates tomatoes...LOVES Heirlooms.

Tonight we had my brother and his fiance over for dinner. We were celebrating Chad's 30th Birthday, which is this week. I know I'm just the sister in this situation---but man do I officially feel old! I'm sure my parents are going to get hit hard with this one! It's like time is flying bye and the years just get shorter and shorter. I served this salad featured on today's blog as part of our dinner tonight. It was loved by everyone!

Beth's Heirloom Tomato Salad

2 Large Heirloom Tomatoes (Whichever color you want... I did 2 different varieties)
2 Medium/Small Heirloom Tomatoes (Again, whatever color you'd like... I did yellow and orange)
1 Jar of Buttermilk Dressing
1 Ripe Avocado
4-5 Strips to Bacon
Salt and Pepper to Taste (I used Jane's Mixed up Salt and freshly ground pepper)

Cut tomatoes into diced pieces and salt and pepper to taste. (Allow to sit while doing other things)
Fry Bacon and crumble into pieces
Cut Avocado open and use a teaspoon to carve out balls of Avocado. (Don't do this too early or it will turn brown)

To assemble:
Put 2-3 Tablespoons of Buttermilk Dressing on a Salad Plate.
Pile Tomatoes, Avocado and Bacon on top of Dressing.
Serve at Room Temperature.

Makes 4 Salads.

I have to end the blog by telling you a funny story---so it's the time in our lives where all of our friends are having babies (and it makes you want one for about a day...then you change your mind when you hear a screaming kid at Walmart!). Growing up, we did this test with a necklace and a wedding band---where you rubbed it up and down on your wrist and then held it up above your wrist and whatever way it moved, it told you what the gender of your kids would be and how many you'd have. We'll for the last 15 years, I've been believing I was have 2 kids... a boy and then a girl..well tonight I was in for the shock of my life! The test reveled for BOTH Brian and I, that we would be having not 2, but 3 kids! Ugh, I can't even begin to imagine us with 3 kids! The test said we would have a girl, then a boy, then another girl...and the first thing out of my mouth was... "Babe, we need to start a wedding fund...otherwise our daughters will never have weddings!" All I can say is... Thank God for Birth Control! (and Heirloom Tomatoes...because tonight turned out to be great food with great company and whole lot of fun!)

Jul 14, 2010

Peg's Layered Salad

This is a Classic Augusta Recipe. It comes from the T-Time at the Masters Cookbook. It is a great addition to any BBQ.

Peg's Layered Salad
Serves 8-10

1 Head Lettuce, Broken
1/2 cup Green Pepper, Chopped
1 Onion, diced
1/2 Cup Celery, diced (I omited..as I HATE Celery)
1/2 Cup Chopped Tomatoes (I added this to the original recipe)
1 10-ounce Package Frozen Green Peas, thawed but not cooked
2 Cups Hellmann's Mayonnaise Mixed with 2 Tabelspoons Sugar
1 4-ounce package Cheddar Cheese, Grated (I used 1 block of Seriously sharp White Cheddar)
6-8 strips Bacon, fried and crumbled
Salt and Pepper
Parmesan Cheese, Grated

In a bowl, layer the first 8 ingredients in order given, Chill for 24 hours. When ready to serve, salt and pepper to taste, toss and top with Parmesan Cheese.

The original recipe says to make a day ahead--but I have made it the same day of serving it and it turned out completely fine. I also don't always toss it before serving---either way you choose to serve it is fine. You can really add anything you would like to this salad. I have added cauliflower and broccoli before--and both are great additions.

Tomato and Corn Pizza

I love Summer! One reason is because of fresh produce. I have found some great summer recipes this past year using a lot of local fresh produce---I swear things taste better when it comes straight from the garden.
This recipe is out of Southern Living's latest Edition. I made it to take to a dinner party last week and it was a hit!

Tomato and Corn Pizza
Makes 4 Servings

3 Small Plum Tomatoes, Sliced (I used cherry and heirlooms mixed together)
1/4 tsp. Salt (I used Jane's Mixed Up Salt)
1/4 tsp. Fresh Ground Pepper
1 Boboli Pizza Crust (I used Thin)
1/3 cup store bought Pesto
1/2 Cup fresh Corn Kernels (1 ear of corn)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
1 tsp. Sugar
8 oz. Fresh Mozzarella, sliced
Fresh Basil Chopped (I used Italian Seasonings)
Olive Oil (to drizzle pizza with)

1. Preheat oven to 450. Place tomato slices on paper towels. Sprinkle with salt and pepper; let stand for 20 minutes. (Since I used Cherry Tomatoes I just mixed in a bowl with Salt and Pepper and didn't let them stand for 20 minutes)
2. Place Pizza Crust on a parchment paper -lined baking sheet; spread with pesto. Stir together corn, Parmesan, and Sugar. Top Pizza with Corn Mixture, Tomatoes and Mozzarella Slices. (I added Italian Seasonings then drizzled the entire thing with Olive Oil before baking).
3. Bake at 450 for 14 minutes or until cheese is melted and golden. Remove from Oven and top with basil.

Houston's Thai Chicken Salad

I'm not a fan of chain restaurants---but Houston's is Amazing! Whenever I'm traveling and there is a Houston's Restaurant nearby... I'm running to eat there. On the first night of our honeymoon, we ate at Houston's and I had the most amazing salad and I've been craving it ever since. Tonight I decided to google it and make it. It's amazing what you can find on the internet! I found a lot of great restaurant recipes. Brian had NO complaints tonight---nothing he'd change about it. This my readers is monumental! He ALWAYS has something to say about what I can do to make things better!

Make this one---you won't be sorry!

Houston's Thai Chicken Salad
Makes 3-4 Servings

3 Tablespoons Lime juice
1 Tablespoon Fish sauce
1 Tablespoon Water
1 Large clove Garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons Sriracha
1 Tablespoon Light Brown Sugar
1 Tablespoon Sesame oil
2 Tablespoon neutral flavored Oil (like Canola or Grapeseed) (I used Vegt. Oil)

Wisk all Ingredients Together and let Sit.

1 Rotisserie Chicken (Cut into chunks)
1 ounce dried Rice Noodles, cooked for 2 minutes in boiling water- rinse in cold water and drain
1 Bag of Mesclun Mixed Lettace or Chopped Lettuce
1 Bag of Shredded Cabbage (For Coleslaw)
1 Mango Chopped into Pieces
1/3 cup Seeded, diced Tomatoes (I used cherry tomatoes)
2 Scallions (thinly sliced)
1/2 Cup Chopped Cilantro

Put all Ingredients into a large bowl and toss with Dressing.

Plate Salad and Top with Chopped Toasted Peanuts before serving.

Serve Immediately.