by Emily Lee in Recipes, August 31st, 2015
by Maria Russo in Recipes, Shows, August 29th, 2015
Head to any large grocery store chain and you’ll likely find an imported supply of warm-weather produce, even in the dead of winter. But once cooler weather settles in, you won’t find any of your favorite summertime crops at the local farmers market, and certainly not in your own garden. In the battle of fresh versus imported, fresh always wins, so savor in-season produce at every opportunity before the bountiful supply of corn, tomatoes and zucchini runs dry until next year. If you want to get the most bang for your buck, turn to fresh, seasonal salads as a way to showcase the season’s bounty. Here are five fruits and vegetables you can’t miss, and a few salad recipes to help you make the most of each.
Sure, it’s possible to purchase avocados year-round, but the vibrant green fruit seems most at home in fresh summer salads. For creaminess and light, airy texture, the chefs at Food Network Kitchen include ripe Hass avocados in their mealworthy Crab and Avocado Salad (pictured at top). For a festive end-of-summer side salad, try Bobby Flay’s Crunchy Avocado Salad loaded with blue corn tortilla chips and aromatic spices, like cumin and paprika.
by Christie Bok in Recipes, June 22nd, 2015
While store-bought dressings and vinaigrettes are surely convenient, most are packed with sugar and sodium; the homemade stuff is quick to mix up, so stick with a recipe the next time you toss a salad. On this morning’s episode of The Kitchen, the cast introduced three bold — and fuss-free — salad dressings that can be ready in mere minutes. Start with Geoffrey Zakarian’s Base Vinaigrette (pictured above). Once you master that simple combination of red wine vinegar, shallots and oil, you can either serve that mixture on its own, like GZ does with arugula, or you can add more ingredients to create a brand-new dressing with rich tastes and textures.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, June 1st, 2015
Grills don’t need to be reserved just for burgers and hot dogs this summer. Give ingredients like fruit and veggies a quick char, and you’ll find that salads and side dishes get a delicious bonus in texture and flavor. In Giada De Laurentiis’ Artichoke and Tomato Panzanella (pictured above), she grills up bread and artichokes — hearty ingredients that will make a meatless salad satisfying — as the stars of her Italian dish.
Perhaps the best part about this salad is that it’s ready to eat in just 16 minutes. Take Giada’s lead and use whole-wheat bread or any day-old variety that you have on hand. The “staleness” will actually give the salad a nice additional crunch. First, drizzle the cubed bread and frozen artichokes with olive oil and grill until golden brown. Giada adds tomatoes, black olives and basil for extra freshness and a beautiful contrast in color. The final layer: a simple vinaigrette. Whisk together extra virgin olive oil with white wine vinegar and then toss with the salad mixture until combined.
by Allison Milam in Recipes, April 23rd, 2015
With Memorial Day officially behind us, summer has (unofficially) kicked off. If this season is all about striving for easy, stress-free days, then there’s perhaps no simpler dish to make than a fresh salad. You could opt for a classic preparation of fresh greens, veggies and your favorite dressing, but in true Barefoot Contessa fashion, Ina Garten takes the traditional to the next level in her Arugula, Watermelon and Feta Salad (pictured above), featuring a craveable combination of peppery greens and juicy seasonal fruit.
Since watermelon is a sweet fruit, Ina balances out those natural sugars with plenty of savory tastes in the other ingredients: The olive oil-based dressing features a duo of bright citruses, plus minced shallots for a subtle bite, while crumbly feta cheese rounds out the salad with hefty richness and welcome tang. For an added burst of freshness, Ina mixes in fragrant mint leaves, which complement the fruit and the arugula alike. Click the play button on the video above to watch her make the salad.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, April 20th, 2015
The utterance “I’m going to get a salad” often evinces visions of diets and other streaks of healthy eating. But, if you’re asking me, leafy greens and their accompaniments are anything but punishment. On the contrary, our favorite green salads emanate fresh vibrancy with every invigorating bite. Plus, when they’re enjoyed as a main dish, they bring a certain brightness to the main event. Next time you’re on the hunt for a side dish, think of these glorious side salad recipes for all kinds of leafy greens.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, April 7th, 2015
The key to a satisfying salad is balance, of flavor and of texture, and with her go-to recipe for Easy Greek Salad (pictured above), The Pioneer Woman hits that mark — and in only 20 speedy minutes.
When it comes to toppings, Ree looks to chopped cucumbers and juicy tomatoes to provide bright, cool tastes alongside fresh romaine, while crumbly feta promises welcome richness and subtle tang, and for a salty bite, she folds in briny Kalamata olives ahead of adding the vinaigrette. Follow her lead and whisk a pinch of sugar into the dressing; this will help mellow the otherwise bold flavors of the red wine vinegar and garlic. Just before serving, reach for a bit more feta, and add a final squeeze of lemon juice to wake up the salad with refreshing brightness.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, March 24th, 2015
We’re finally in the early days of strawberry season, which means it’s time to ditch those firm, dry, white-centered berries we know from winter and welcome in their place spring’s juicy, ruby-red beauties. While desserts like shortcakes, cheesecake and cupcakes are tried-and-true ways to put these sweet bites to work, savory favorites, too, are ideal for letting strawberries shine. If you’ve never before worked with strawberries in a non-dessert, try starting with a salad; you’ll be able to balance the fruit’s natural sugars with tangy, acidic flavors in the dressing and peppery greens, which means you won’t end up eating a too-sweet dish. Check out Food Network’s best-five strawberry salads below, each an easy-to-make pick that’s ready to eat in 25 minutes or fewer.
5. Strawberry and Mozzarella Salad — Think of this healthy 15-minute dish as a berry-focused take on a caprese. In place of traditional tomatoes there are bright strawberries instead, which pair well with the fragrant basil.
4. Green Salad with Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette — It takes just a few everyday ingredients and only five quick minutes to make Rachael Ray’s simple salad. The secret to guaranteeing bold strawberry flavor in her recipe is the strawberry jam featured in her dressing, plus a whole pint of the fresh fruit.
by Maria Russo in Recipes, March 2nd, 2015
Forget everything you know to be true about tiny plates of overdressed lettuce — those are side salads, and perhaps boring ones at that. Loaded with fresh flavors, colorful ingredients, and plenty of crunchy and cheesy textures, these over-the-top salad recipes will bring greens out of the shadows and into the shining role of entree. Get Food Network’s best-ever main dish salads below — each is a hearty, satisfying meal worthy of the spotlight.
5. Chef’s Salad — A trio of deli meats, plus buttery Swiss cheese, cool avocado and juicy cherry tomatoes beef up a classic base of greens, which you can toss with a topping of your choice. How about shallot vinaigrette or blue cheese dressing?
4. Farro and Kale Salad — “It’s got a nutty texture and flavor to it,” Giada De Laurentiis says of the Italian grain she pairs with kale in her warm, citrus-dressed salad. For extra richness, she mixes crumbled goat cheese into this easy salad just before serving.
by Marisa McClellan in Recipes, November 6th, 2014
It’s no surprise that salads sometimes get a bad rap for being boring; after all, a plate of lettuce and a drizzle of dressing isn’t exactly a satisfying meal. The key to making a salad, especially a meatless one, hearty is layering flavors and textures. While traditional mixed greens are a go-to pick for lettuce, try swapping in arugula or endive to experiment with new tastes, then pair them with bold mix-ins like fresh vegetables and filling proteins, like eggs or nuts. When it comes to dressing, ditch the bottled stuff in favor of a DIY mixture — most vinaigrettes come together in mere minutes with ingredients you likely already have on hand.
Food Network Magazine’s Grapefruit-Arugula Salad (pictured above) is full of color and crunch, as it’s brimming with peppery greens, plus fresh celery and endive for a mix of crispness. While fresh grapefruit segments promise a refreshing bite, the next-level walnuts, baked with a cumin-brown sugar coating, offer a welcome smoky sweetness and a hefty crunch to round out the meal. Before serving, toss the salad with a creamy yogurt-based vinaigrette laced with lemon juice for even more citrus flavor.
Let’s talk lunch. There is no better time to think about packing a few weekday lunches than over the weekend. If you wait until Monday, the battle is already lost. But if you devote even just half an hour on Saturday or Sunday to prep some lettuce and a couple of interesting toppings, the entire week is just better.
It means that instead of snacking aimlessly throughout the day or spending way too much money on a takeout meal, you have a solid lunch to look forward to.