4 Simple and Tasty Side Dishes

Easy-to-find ingredients, easy instructions and they are delicious. So no excuse not to try.

1. Fresh And Fruity Spinach Salad

Fruit and spinach makes a delicious combination.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 package (6 ounces) fresh baby spinach
  • 1 medium nectarine, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh strawberries
  • 2 medium kiwifruit, peeled and sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • STRAWBERRY VINAIGRETTE:
    • 1/2 cup halved fresh strawberries
    • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
    • 1 tbsp sugar
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 1/8 tsp dried tarragon
    • 1/8 tsp pepper
    • 1/3 cup plus
    • 2 tsp olive oil

HOW TO MAKE:

In a large bowl, combine the spinach, nectarine, strawberries, kiwi and walnuts.

Place the first six vinaigrette ingredients in a blender; cover and process for 15 seconds.

While processing, gradually add oil in a steady stream. Drizzle over salad and toss to coat.

2 Methods to PEEL A KIWIFRUIT

1 Cut both ends from fruit. Using a spoon, scoop out the flesh.

2 Cut both ends from fruit. Using a vegetable peeler, peel off fuzzy brown skin. Cut into slices, wedges or chunks with a sharp knife.

for 10 servings.

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2. Hot Bacon Asparagus Salad

This salad is so easy to make.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 7 bacon strips, diced
  • 1 pound fresh asparagus, trimmed
  • 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 4 cups torn salad greens
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 2 hard-cooked eggs, sliced

HOW TO MAKE:

  1. In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp.
  2. Using a slotted spoon, remove to paper towels to drain, reserving 2-3 tbsp drippings.
  3. Cut asparagus into 1-1/2-in. pieces; saute in drippings until crisp-tender.
  4. Add the vinegar, sugar, mustard, pepper and bacon.
  5. Cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until heated through.
  6. In a large salad bowl, combine salad greens and almonds.
  7. Add the asparagus mixture; toss gently.
  8. Arrange eggs over the salad.

PREPARE ASPARAGUS:

  1. To prepare asparagus, rinse stalks well in cold water.
  2. Snap off the stalk ends as far down as they will easily break when gently bent, or cut off the tough white portion.
  3. If stalks are large, use a vegetable peeler to gently peel the tough area of the stalk from the end to just below the tip.
  4. If tips are large, scrape off scales with a knife.

for 6 servings.

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3.Mojito Marinated fruit

A mojito-inspired syrup marinates assorted fruits makes a uniquely refreshing salad.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1/2 cup light rum
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tbsp grated lime peel
  • 2 cups each cantaloupe, honeydew and seedless watermelon balls
  • 2 cups cubed fresh pineapple
  • 3 mint sprigs

HOW TO MAKE:

  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and water.
  2. Cook and stir over medium heat until sugar is dissolved.
  3. Remove from the heat.
  4. Stir in the rum, lime juice and peel.
  5. Cool. In a large bowl, combine the melon, pineapple and mint.
  6. Add marinade; toss to coat.
  7. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  8. Discard mint.
  9. Spoon the fruit with syrup into serving cups.
  10. Garnish with additional mint if desired.

for 10 servings.

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4.Artichoke Caprese Platter

The classic Italian combination of mozzarella, tomatoes and basil.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 jars (7-1/2 ounces each) marinated artichoke hearts
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 plum tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves

HOW TO MAKE:

  1. Drain artichokes, reserving 1/2 cup marinade; cut artichokes in half.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the vinegar, oil and reserved marinade.
  3. On a large serving platter, arrange the artichokes, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and basil.
  4. Drizzle with vinaigrette.

for 10-12 servings.

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