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S.Ensalada

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Lunch Recipe: Radicchio Salad with Avocado, Red Quinoa & Ricotta Salata Recipes from The Kitchn. At this moment, I have my kitchen door open, and from my table I can see daffodils, new green grass, and yes, leaves.

Lunch Recipe: Radicchio Salad with Avocado, Red Quinoa & Ricotta Salata Recipes from The Kitchn

Hallelujah. It's about time. I love winter, and snow, but the leaves are overdue this year and I've missed them. Green leaves mean crunchy leaves on the plate, too — tender lettuce, juicy and crisp. Shaved Fennel, Roasted Tomato & Pistachio Salad with Yogurt Dressing — Recipes From The Kitchn. Nine times out of ten, when you see fennel salad on a restaurant menu, it is simply shaved with lemon, olive oil and Parmesan cheese — a classic, foolproof combination to be sure, but if I'm going to pay $9 for a side salad, it had better not be something I can make perfectly well at home on a Wednesday night.

Shaved Fennel, Roasted Tomato & Pistachio Salad with Yogurt Dressing — Recipes From The Kitchn

So when I spotted an unusual fennel salad with roasted tomatoes, pistachios and cream on the menu of Seattle's The Walrus and the Carpenter, I knew I had to order it. And once I tasted it, I knew I had to make a version of my own. The Walrus and the Carpenter is an oyster bar, and a very good one, so although the assortment of raw, briny, perfect oysters was the highlight of my happy hour visit, the fennel salad was an unexpected second-favorite. Baked Goat Cheese Salad with Creamy Walnut Vinaigrette. Warm, gooey goat cheese is not an overrated snack, and in fact, makes eating a salad seem so much more appealing.

Baked Goat Cheese Salad with Creamy Walnut Vinaigrette

(Well, to me at least.) And when you pair the crunchy, melty nuggets with buttery pecans and bright greens, tossed in a thick walnut vinaigrette...then salad nirvana awaits. Breaded goat cheese salads may have had their heyday back in the nineties, but I happen to think some pretty awesome foods came out of that particular decade. Call me crazy, but I still have a soft spot for barbecue chicken pizza and chocolate molten lava cake. AUTUMN SALAD WITH HORSERADISH VINAIGRETTE + NEWS!

I'm pregnant!

AUTUMN SALAD WITH HORSERADISH VINAIGRETTE + NEWS!

We're pregnant is what you say, I suppose, but I'm the one in the stretchy pants over here. So many things to say about this, friends, but I'm at a loss for words at the same time. Tofu Amaranth Salad Recipe. A good number of you were curious about the tofu and amaranth salad pictured next to these chive pancakes a few weeks back.

Tofu Amaranth Salad Recipe

Apologies for taking so long to write it up! The salad was inspired by two things. Italian Chopped Salad with Creamy Garlic Vinaigrette. Have you ever spent months, years even, trying to replicate a recipe from a favorite restaurant?

Italian Chopped Salad with Creamy Garlic Vinaigrette

I've been trying to perfect this chopped salad since the day I first tasted it at my beloved red-sauce Italian joint in L.A., and I'm proud to say I think I finally nailed it. (Sans the red checkered tablecloths.) When I lived in California, there was a little hole-in-the-wall Italian restaurant about a half mile from my house. Ensalada. Trigo Burgol + Coliflor. Ahhh, couscous!

Ensalada. Trigo Burgol + Coliflor

The food so nice they named it twice. Except this isn't really couscous. It's cauliflower. And I feel like I won a gold medal in the kitchen when my couscous loving husband didn't bat an eye while he gobbled up this "pretend" version. Ensalada. Lentejas + Aceitunas + Pepinos. Lentils slip in and out of my consciousness throughout the year, filling out warming stews and serving as a bed for braised meats during the winter, then resurging as a base for cold yet hearty salads in the summer.

Ensalada. Lentejas + Aceitunas + Pepinos

Every year I revisit this particular salad of lentils, cucumbers, olives, and mint tossed with a sherry vinaigrette, whether to dole out for lunches throughout the week or as a healthy contribution to a summer cookout. While the obvious pairing with cucumbers and olives is feta, I reach for ricotta just as often instead. I stir in this creamy cheese just before digging in and love the way it mixes with the vinaigrette to create a lustier dressing.

I list the option for either cheese in the recipe below. Use whichever you're in the mood for! Ensalada. Trigo + Tomate + Pepino. Olive oil, for cooking 2 large shallots (or 1 sweet onion), finely chopped 2 cups farro (uncooked) 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock.

Ensalada. Trigo + Tomate + Pepino

Ensalada. Tomate. It's not really fair to suggest something so definitive as The Perfect Tomato Salad.

Ensalada. Tomate

When it comes to vegetables, especially, so much of perfect has to do with the vegetable itself. But I had perfect on the brain. S.Ensalada. A lot of the fruit salads this time of year are sweet. Juicy, ripe fragrant fruit with a sweet dressing - summer bliss bite after bite. These compositions live in the dessert category of my brain. S.Ensaladas. Ensalada. Quinoa + Azuki. One of the most challenging parts of cooking quinoa, for me, is properly rinsing the quinoa. The holes in my sieve are just a little too big and I end up just barely holding on to the stuff. But the effort is well worth it; once cooked, the texture is unlike anything else. This recipe lends it self to showcase practically any fresh vegetable, cut into small pieces and tossed into the mix. I've used fresh corn, bell peppers, and avocado as well as limes in place of lemons. Black Bean and Heirloom Tomato Quinoa with Lemon Dressing. Ensalada. Quinoa Tabbouleh. Last week, I came home from the farmers market with my bag full of beautiful, bright red summer tomatoes.

As I set them out on the counter, I spotted a container of quinoa that hadn't gotten put away the night before. I looked at the tomatoes. I looked at the quinoa. Ensalada. Quinoa. Homemade green goddess dressing with farm fresh herbs, fresh lemon juice and avocado will have you feeling like a goddess in no time. I don't typically feel like a goddess in my day to day life since I am usually covered in dirt, wearing ripped Levi jeans, and running around trying to get farm chores done. It's not until I rinse the dirt and grime from the day off my body, pour a glass of wine, and begin preparing dinner that I start feeling like a lady again. It's always a bonus when a recipe is so stinking good it makes you glow from the inside out.

Ensalada. Quinoa. It took me a long time to warm up to quinoa. I felt like I was the only one not on the super-grain-(that's-not-really-a-grain-but-who-cares) bandwagon. But my attempts at quinoa had all turned out sticky and faintly bitter, a health food to choke down. So how did I get from there to here, to this lemon-scented golden salad with crunchy bits of cucumber, radish, and almonds?

(There are dates, dill, and Parmesan in there too, plus a secret ingredient that really makes it sing.) It only takes one quinoa dish, it turns out, to make a difference. Ensalada. Azuki.