Monday, October 06, 2014

Mason Jar Salads And More:Chapter Two Salads

 Mason Jar Salads & More has an variety of flavorful and unique salads.There is many simplistic and adventerous recipes in this cookbook, including lots of room to expand creativity.In this specific chapter, I chose to make Julia Mirabellas Greek Salad with Chickpeas as well as her Cobb Salad.

There are many versions of traditional Greek salad that commonly include feta,olives,cucumber and grapes tomatoes.This version makes sure that all these ingredients shine for there unique texture,flavor and color.It also includes an ingredient I thought would never be a great match up and that is chickpeas.However I found out first hand that it actually works quite well in all aspects along with giving us extra protein and zinc.The medley of flavors and textures are balanced very well and is a very refreshing take on Greek salad.

The dressing is also top notch because its simple and quick using only olive oil,lemon juice,seasoned with salt and pepper.This is really all you need to enhance the flavors of juicy sweet grape tomatoes,refreshing crunchy cucumbers and tender,smooth chickpeas.It's a pretty basic meal that anyone can make and enjoy.Its easy to prep and assemble for a quick grab to go lunch.It will give you energy during the day and keep you full,plus this recipe gives you an excuse to enjoy lots of feta cheese.This is definitely a satisfying meal and beautiful as well.I am happy to give this recipe a two thumb ups for its flavor,texture, beauty and of course simple approach.

Now with a Cobb salad I always think in my head "An everything salad" because it has so much in it and the possibilities are endless.This specific recipe includes a vast amount of delectable ingredients such as bacon,chicken,cheese,romaine and even avacado.This meal is pack full of vitamins,protein,fiber and is an excellent meal for lunch or dinner.It will give you the energy you crave and  keep you full during the day.The Cobb salad is simple to prep,easy to assemble and keeps very fresh when layered in this mason jars.Though the best part about the salad was how every flavor and texture stood out.The romaine was perfectly fresh and crisp along side the sweet,juicy tomatoes.The bacon was crisp and salty,  the chicken was very tender and excellent with the rich cheddar cheese.Also the avocado and egg came together to be very creamy and rich.

Overall,it was a delightful flavor fest and everything came together so well with the simple French vinagrette.It is a beautifully layered salad and showcased so well through the mason jar.Everyone will find something they love about this salad and get creative with there own ideas.Just thinks these recipes are simply idea starters and you can go as mad as you like.Julia Mirabeilla wants us simply to experiment and get creative with these recipes. So overall I will have to give this Cobb Salad a two thumbs ups for its great, unique flavor and texture along with simple directions and of course letting bacon in the recipe.Love it!

So now it's on to more unique ideas for lunches? The next chapter includes ideas for soups,salads,pasta, risotto and rice dishes.How exciting!

Greek Salad With Chickpeas

Lemon Vinaigrette Dressing (About Two Salad portions)

2 tbsp Lemon juice
Pinch of Salt
Freshly ground black pepper,to taste
2 tbsp olive oil

In a medium bowl,I whisked together the lemon juice,salt and pepper.Then slowly added the olive oil,whisking,until thickened.

Salad (This recipe makes one pint size) Opitional:Double Ingredients for Two pint sizes

2 tbsp Lemon Vinaigrette
1/2 cup chick peas,rinsed and drained
1/3 cup halved cherry tomatoes
1/3 cup quartered cucumber slices
2 tbsps diced red onion
2 tbsps pitted black olives,halved
2 ounces crumbled feta cheese
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 pint-size Mason Jar

I rinsed and drained the chickpeas.Rinsed and halved the cherry tomatoes.Rinsed and quartered the cucumber slices.Diced the red onion.Halved the pitted black olives and lastly chopped the parsley finely.

I then poured 2 tbsp of the lemon vinaigrette in the Mason jar and added the chickepeas.Then I layered the tomatoes,cucumber,onion,olives and lastly feta and  parsley.Then I gently sealed the jar and refrigerated,until ready to eat.

Cobb Salad

French Vinaigrette Dressing (About Two Salad Portions)

2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tbsp minced shallots or green onions
1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
Pinc hof salt
Freshly ground black pepper,for taste
3 tbsp olive oil

I whisked together the lemon juice,minced green onion,mustard,salt and pepper.Then I slowly added the olive oil,whisking,until the dressing thickened.

Cobb Salad (This recipes makes one pint size) Optional: Double Ingredients for Two.

1 egg
2 slices bacon
1/2 cup avacado
1 1/2 tbsp French Vinaigrette
1/4 cup diced tomatoes
2 tbsp chopped fresh parlsey,finely
1 tbsp chopped chives
1/4 cup chopped romaine,cut into 2 inch strips
 1/4 cup cubed chicken breast
1 ounce cheddar cheese,grated
1 pint size Mason jar
For one Quart-size,increase vinagrette to 3 tbsps and the romaine to 2 cups

I placed the egg in a sm,saucepan and covered it with water.Then I brought the water to a boil over high heat and then turned off the heat immediately. Then I coved the pot and let it sit for 11 minutes,then I removed the egg with a slotted spooned and place it in cold water.Then I peeled and chopped the egg,setting it aside.

With a frying pan over medium heat,I cooked the two slices of bacon until crispy,draining the slices on paper towel and then chopped them into small pieces,to set aside.

Then using 1/2 of the avacado,I removed the pit and gently scoop out the inside and chopped into cubes,setting it aside.I then diced the tomatoes,chopped the parsley and chives.Then chopped the romaine,cubed the cooked chicken and grated cheddar cheese.

I placed the 3 tbsp of vinagrette to a quart size jar,then layered in the tomatoes,parsley and chives,chopped egg,2 cups romaine,avocado and cubed chicken.Then I added the grated cheddar cheese and crumbled the bacon on top.Then I sealed tightly and refrigerated, until ready to eat.

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