Tag Archives: salad

Perfect Pizza Pairings

Written by Cynthia -

Pizza Portion

October is National Pizza Month. And I know what you’re thinking…there seems to be a food holiday for pretty much anything these days. But I must say…who doesn’t love pizza?! I, for one, love all types of pizza and for me, moderation is key, so I’m always looking for ways to combine my cheesy cravings with a nice nutritious balance.

Luckily, Nestlé USA has launched this great Pizza Portion Guide in conjunction with the Balance Your Plate initiative, a way for us to think differently about frozen meals. It’s simple – just combining a slice of pizza or a frozen entrée with fruits and vegetables helps you balance your plate with nutrients you need!

Last week, after a hard day’s work, I went out and grabbed a DiGIORONO® pizzeria!™ pepperoni pizza and put this toolkit to practice. My wish was for a quick and easy weeknight meal that I felt good about. I popped the pizza in the oven and while waiting, grabbed a spring mix of lettuce, threw in some tomatoes, carrots and avocado for a nice refreshing and simple salad. I paired the two and voilà – my 10 minute weeknight meal was ready to go!

Pizza Portion

For the approximate measure, the guide recommends picturing your hand as a pizza slice and enjoying only one or two hands’ worth. I chose one in this case, since I made a larger portion of the salad. Check out more clever ideas for enjoying perfect pizza portions.

Eating additional slices of this pizza deliciousness was definitely tempting, but merely combining it with a handful of leafy greens and fresh produce really managed to be very fulfilling in the end. Mission accomplished!

For more tips and tricks on balancing your plate with pizza, visit http://www.nestleusa.com/nutrition/enjoypizza.

Sweet, Savory, and Simple Apples

Written by Nick -

Apples

Everyone loves a classic apple pie in the fall, but summer is a time for apples too! They’re a great way to sweeten some muffins or add a bit of crunch to your summer salads. Best of all, for most of the country, it’s apple picking season right now. So, experiment a bit and enjoy apples from summer to winter.

Smoked Poultry Salad with Chocolate Dressing Recipe

Smoked Poultry Salad with Chocolate Dressing

Crunchy apples go great with smoked turkey. This salad has a sweet and smoky taste and a fresh crispness. The recipe calls for Golden Delicious apples, but I’ve enjoyed this salad with all types of apples.

Apple Bran Muffins Recipe

Apple Bran Muffins

Try these apple bran muffins to kick-start your morning. I like to keep them around for an afternoon snack too.

Pumpkin Apple Butter Recipe

Pumpkin Apple Butter

This spread is great on a piece of toast for a quick breakfast, but if you’re adventurious, try it as a sandwich spread. A little pumpkin apple butter turns a simple grilled cheddar cheese sandwich into a gourmet, restaurant quality, sandwich.

Apple-Cranberry Cobbler Recipe

Apple-Cranberry Cobbler

A classic dessert, the Apple-Cranberry Cobbler takes only 10 minutes to prepare. It’s a great treat after a summer BBQ, try it with a scoop of DREYER’S® or EDY’S® SLOW CHURNED™ Vanilla Ice Cream.

If you’re looking for more apple desserts, take a look at our Apple Desserts recipe collection on Meals.com. It’s chock-full of sweet apple recipes.

How to a Make Vinaigrette Dressing using a Juice Reduction: Roasted Beet & Peach Salad Recipe

Written by Chris -

Roasted Beet and Peach Salad Recipe

Have you ever thought of using a juice reduction in a vinaigrette dressing or even in a sauce for grilled summer fruit? Cooking down the juice (reducing the volume) not only thickens it, but it concentrates the flavor, making it the perfect addition to this Roasted Beet and Peach Salad.

Making a vinaigrette dressing isn’t difficult at all. The general ratio of oil to vinegar is 3:1. Meaning, 3 parts oil to 1 part vinegar. You can also add other seasonings like mustard, shallots, herbs, salt and pepper.

Any light, neutral-flavored oil like canola, safflower or soybean oil will work. I personally love extra-virgin olive oil due to its fruity flavor and peppery finish. The vinegar you use depends on the other ingredients in the recipe. In this salad, I’ve found that white wine vinegar, champagne vinegar and sherry compliment the juice the best. You may notice I broke the general rule of 3:1. The juice reduction adds a bit of sweetness, so to counteract this, I added a little extra vinegar.

Since beets and peaches are so abundant in our local Farmers’s Market, I like adding them to this delicious summer salad. Try using golden beets for a lighter, milder taste. And, of course, you can substitute nectarines for peaches.

Roasted Beet and Peach Salad

Ingredients for 6 servings:

  • 1 1/2 cups Orange Tangerine or Apple Flavor NESTLÉ® JUICY JUICE® 100% Juice
  • 3 medium purple and/or golden beets
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar or sherry
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 to 2 fresh peaches, pitted and sliced
  • 4 cups arugula or mixed salad greens
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled feta or goat cheese
  • Cooked farro or quinoa (optional)

Directions:

BRING Juicy Juice to a boil in small saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low; cook for 20 minutes or until juice is reduced to ½ cup. Transfer to jar or sealed container, making sure there is extra space in jar; refrigerate while the beets roast. (Juice can be refrigerated in covered container for up to 2 days.)

PREHEAT oven to 400° F.

WIPE or scrub beets then trim ends, leaving tails on. Place beets on a sheet of foil and make a pouch, sealing tightly (you can individually wrap if you are using both purple and golden beets so the colors don’t bleed together). Place on baking sheet.

Roasted Beet and Peach Salad

ROAST beets for about 45 minutes or until tender. Remove from oven and let beets steam for 10 minutes. Open pouch; let beets cool until cool enough to handle. Remove and discard skin (this can easily be done under running water with your fingers). Slice into wedges and place in large bowl.

ADD vinegar, oil, shallot, mustard, salt and pepper to the reduced juice. Seal lid and shake vigorously until emulsified. Add a little vinaigrette to the beets; toss gently to coat. Cover and refrigerate beets for 30 minutes. Allow remaining vinaigrette to stand at room temperature while beets are marinating. This will help the flavors meld.

ADD peaches and arugula to bowl with beets; toss gently to coat. Arrange on plates; sprinkle with cheese. Serve with remaining vinaigrette (be sure to shake to emulsify).

NOTE: Beets can be refrigerated in covered container for up to 2 days. Store any remaining vinaigrette in sealed container in refrigerator for up to a week.

Roasted Beet and Peach Salad Recipe

Tip: Stir in a little cooked farro or quinoa to boost fiber and add texture. And throw on a few thinly sliced red onions if you have them. This has become my favorite lunch!

Do you have any tips you’d like to share for creating a flavorful vinaigrette?

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Beet Salad with Oranges and Cheese Recipe Seared Steak Salad with Balsamic-Shallot Reduction Recipe
Beet Salad with
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Bachelor in the Kitchen: Dressing Up a Seasonal Favorite

Written by Nick -

Creamy Parmesan Romaine Recipe

I eat seasonally. Wintertime is for meat and potatoes, but when the sun is shining, I’m all for a fresh salad. Salad doesn’t need to be a side dish. It’s easy to “dress-up” with your favorite salad dressing and adding a bit of grilled chicken or any other favorite protein item makes it a filling meal. A salad is also a great way to get your recommended five servings of fruits and veggies. And it’s one of the simplest meals to make for one or two people, which is what I typically cook for. But, I think, the best thing about a salad is the constant variety you can create by adding new and interesting dressings with the seasonal veggies and fruits.

I’m lucky enough to live close to a fantastic green grocer. Not only do they have great, fresh produce, but shopping there takes out the headache of dealing with the crowds at the grocery store. Plus it helps you avoid the grocery store temptations. After all, salads should be healthy, but I can’t help adding bacon to my cart when I see it right next to the low fat ranch dressing…

You can add all the different veggies you want, but if you don’t have a unique dressing, salads can become stale and boring. So I’m always on the lookout for homemade dressing recipes. I like making dressings at home so I can constantly customize to my individual liking and then brag about my expert skills in the kitchen. Anyone can chop some lettuce and tomatoes and throw in a bit of store bought dressing, but when you have a“signature” dressing it’s worth showing it off.

I decided to step out of my comfort zone and try this creamy salad dressing, which uses NESTLÉ COFFEE-MATE Liquid Coffee Creamer! I didn’t follow the recipe for the salad, I like to pick out whatever looks fresh. In this case I mixed in some romaine, added some spinach, cherry tomatoes, red onion, avocados (since moving to California I add avocados to everything), and topped it all off with some grilled chicken. This dressing is a delicious, creamy mixture with a kick of pepper. Each tablespoon is packed with flavor, so don’t get too overzealous when adding to your salad. A little goes a long way with this dressing.

What’s your favorite way to dress up a salad?

Creamy Parmesan Romaine

Ingredients for 4 Servings:

  • 2 slices whole-wheat bread (about 2 ounces total), cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 8 cups chopped romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup sliced cucumber
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
  • 3 tablespoons Original NESTLÉ COFFEE-MATE Liquid Coffee Creamer
  • 2 tablespoons fat free sour cream
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons light mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons BUITONI Refrigerated Freshly Shredded Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Directions:

PREHEAT oven to 350° F.

PLACE bread cubes in single layer on large baking sheet. Bake for 12 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove from oven; cool completely.

PLACE lettuce, cucumber and onion in large bowl; set aside.

COMBINE Coffee-mate, sour cream, mayonnaise, cheese, vinegar, salt and pepper in small bowl; stir until completely blended. Add to lettuce mixture; toss gently, yet thoroughly, to coat completely. Add bread cubes; toss gently.

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A New Favorite: Fennel & Apple Salad with Apple Vinaigrette

Written by Chris -

Apple and Fennel Salad with Apple Vinaigrette Recipe

This Fennel & Apple Salad has become my new favorite salad – and mind you, this is coming from someone who avoided fennel her whole life. Really. I’m not sure why it took me so long to warm up to fennel, but now, I can’t get enough of it. Fennel and apple play so well together and I’m kicking myself for just discovered this.

I have our local Farmer Fresh to You program to thank for my new obsession. Bi-weekly, we get fresh, local and organic produce delivered to our doorstep, so I like to challenge myself to create new recipes from what’s in the box. Two of our recent deliveries were overflowing with apples and fennel. My first thought was – shoot, what am I going to do with all this fennel? Then I remember coming across a recipe for a stacked fennel salad that caught my eye. It was more the visual that I fell in love with, because, well, fennel was the star ingredient.

I nearly always add fresh thyme, glazed walnuts or pecans and crumbled blue cheese to my salads, so why not incorporate these elements into a stacked fennel & apple salad? I thought I’d tie it all together with an apple vinaigrette that I created for Nestlé. Wow! I am certain I ate at least 3 servings.

I used a mandoline to slice the apples and fennel, but you could thinly slice with a sharp chef’s knife as well. I made one minor change to this recipe after photographing it. I’ve been using the mandoline to shave the apples and fennel almost paper-thin. This way, you can eat it with just a fork. It’s really just a matter of preference. One tip: if you like fennel, double the recipe and save half. This salad gets even better the second day! The fennel softens ever so slightly, the apple stays crisp and the flavors marry beautifully. I was topping everything with it – turkey burger, ahi tuna – you name it.

Apple & Fennel Salad with Apple Vinaigrette

Ingredients for 4 servings:

  • 1 1/2 cups Apple NESTLÉ® JUICY JUICE® All Natural 100% Juice
  • 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 small red apples, washed, cored and thinly sliced
  • 4 small fennel bulbs, washed and thinly sliced (about 4 cups total)
  • 2 to 3 slices red onion (optional)
  • 1/4 cup chopped glazed pecans
  • 1/4 (1 ounce) cup crumbled blue cheese
  • Fresh thyme leaves

Directions:

BRING Juicy Juice to a boil in small saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low; cook for 20 minutes or until juice is reduced to ½ cup. Cool to room temperature. (Juice can be refrigerated in covered container for up to 2 days.) Whisk in vinegar, oil, mustard, salt and pepper.

apple fennel salad edit2

TO ASSEMBLE: Alternately stack layers of fennel and apple (and onion if using) on salad plates. Drizzle with apple vinaigrette. Sprinkle with pecans, blue cheese and thyme leaves.

Related recipes:

Apple Quinoa Salad Recipe Spring Farro Salad Recipe
Apple Quinoa Salad Spring Farro Salad

Ancient Grains: Spring Farro Salad

Written by Chris -

Spring Farro Salad Recipe

Farro is an ancient wheat grain that can be found in specialty foods stores, natural foods stores, and Italian markets. It’s sold whole (which is the most nutritious), semi-pearled, or pearled, all of which can be used in place of barley and other grains in salads. In Italy, where most farro is grown, the grain is often added to soups. It can be substituted for rice in risotto as well. And it’s fabulous for breakfast.

Farro has a hearty texture and nutty taste, making it the perfect base for this spring salad. I chose to use pearled farro because it can be prepared quickly. Since it’s hulled, the cook time is reduced to 15 to 20 minutes. If you prefer to use whole grain farro, plan on cooking it for about 45-60 minutes.

 Spring Farro Salad Recipe Package and Heart

Grain salads make a satisfying lunch, simple side or nutritious snack. Use whatever vegetables are in season and you really can’t go wrong. I chose fresh English peas, English cucumber, green onions, dill, micro greens and avocado. I didn’t plan to have everything green in color; it’s just what I had on hand. Fresh lemon vinaigrette brings it all together!

Spring Farro Salad Recipe

Spring Farro Salad

Ingredients needed for four 1-cup servings:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup pearled farro
  • 1 ½ teaspoons MAGGI Instant Chicken Flavor Bouillon
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ cup English peas, blanched* (these are super tasty raw too!)
  • ½ cup sliced and quartered English cucumber, seeded if desired
  • ½ cup micro greens or wild arugula
  • ¼ cup sliced green onions
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh dill
  • ½ cup diced avocado

Directions:

COMBINE water, farro and bouillon in medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover; cook for 15 to 20 minutes or just until farro is tender (it will not absorb all the water). Drain and set aside to cool.

WHISK together oil, lemon juice, lemon peel, vinegar and pepper in large bowl. Add farro; toss to coat. Add peas, cucumber, micro greens, green onions and dill; toss gently to coat. Taste and season salad with sea salt, if needed; fold in avocado. Serve at room temperature or chilled.

*Set aside a bowl of ice water and slotted spoon. Bring a pan of water to boil over high heat. Add a teaspoon of salt and the peas and boil just until bright green (about 30 seconds to 1 minute). Quickly remove the peas with the slotted spoon and plunge them into the ice.

Links:

Related recipes:

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Whole-Wheat Couscous Salad
Apple Quinoa Salad Recipe
Apple Quinoa Salad
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