Tag Archives: kale

 

Butternut squash is one of my all-time favorite foods. I didn’t discover it until I was an adult, but it quickly became a household staple throughout the fall and winter months. Butternut squash is widely available at supermarkets and farmers markets, and it is an affordable fruit that can be prepared in many ways. While I really love summer produce, I love butternut squash so much, I almost don’t miss my tomatoes.

This warm dish features roasted butternut squash, which gives structure to the salad. Quinoa is the main protein, and it absorbs all the wonderful flavors of the dressing – a little spice, a little zing and a little sweetness. Kale and radicchio offer pops of bright green and purple that compliment the rich orange of the squash. The finished salad is so beautiful it could be served as a main dish for the most critical of company, but it’s just as good for dinner with the family and as leftovers the next day.  

Quinoa Facts and Information from the Test Kitchen:

  • Contrary to what many assume, quinoa is a seed, not a grain.
  • Always rinse quinoa before cooking. Quinoa has a bitter coating that can change the flavor of a recipe if not rinsed.
  • Fine mesh strainers are the best to rinse this seed before cooking.
  • Quinoa cooks quickly. Add 2 cups of water and 1 cup rinsed quinoa, to a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook 15 minutes.
  • Use the same fine mesh strainer to thoroughly drain the quinoa. It holds water and, if not properly drained, will water down the flavors in your recipe.
  • Let the cooked quinoa rest for 5 to 10 minutes to completely dry before adding to a recipe.

Butternut Squash Kale Quinoa Salad from Everyday Good Thinking, the official blog of @HamiltonBeach

 


Warm Butternut Squash and Quinoa Salad
SERVES: 8

Ingredients
1 1/2 lbs. butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 1/2 teaspoons Jamaican Jerk Seasoning, divided
Dressing
1 small onion, peeled and quartered
1 clove garlic, peeled
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup hot mango chutney
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
Salad
3 cups shredded kale
1 cup shredded radicchio
1 cup quinoa, cooked
1/2 cup toasted walnuts, chopped
Instructions
Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Add squash, oil and 2 teaspoons Jamaican Jerk Seasoning; stir until squash is coated.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until fork tender.
Dressing
Add onion and garlic to food processor bowl. Pulse until chopped.
Add 1/2 teaspoon Jamaican Jerk Seasoning and remaining Dressing ingredients to food processor bowl.
Process until blended.
Salad
Toss squash, dressing, kale, radicchio and quinoa in a large bowl until blended.
Sprinkle with walnuts before serving, if desired.
Notes
Quinoa can be cooked in a rice cooker. Use 1 cup quinoa with 2 cups of water.
Everyday Good Thinking http://everydaygoodthinking.com/

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Food Focus: Types of Lettuce

 

Lettuce has become more than an afterthought in a side salad. Now, most supermarkets carry a dozen or so different kinds of lettuce and greens, offering a variety of flavors and opportunities to make lettuce new, different and exciting. Here are some of our standbys, our new favorites and a few greens that we like to use occasionally in place of lettuce. What are your favorite lettuce varieties? Let us know in the comments below.

Learn more about How to Clean and Store Lettuce.

Romaine

Romaine has hardy tall leaves with a crisp and thick white center. This is the lettuce that you commonly see used in Caesar salad. Romaine should be washed and dried before wrapping in a damp paper towel to be stored in an airtight resealable plastic bag.

 

Butterhead

The Butterhead lettuce family includes both Bibb and Boston lettuces, a delicate lettuce with a flowery head. Bibb lettuce is slightly smaller and sweeter than Boston lettuce, and it is usually a bit more expensive. Butterheads have light green leaves that are very soft and loose, so they are often sold in plastic containers that will protect it. Butterheads are great to use in place of bread to hold wraps, pastas or chicken.

 

Iceberg

The least expensive lettuce and the best selling of all lettuces is Iceberg. You typically find them wrapped in plastic in your produce aisle. It looks like a head of cabbage and is the heaviest of the lettuces. The leaves are very pale green or almost white and contain a lot of water. This lettuce doesn’t have the nutritional value of other lettuces, but it is relatively high in fiber. Use Iceberg shredded on sandwiches, tacos, salads or subs.

 

Arugula

This smooth, slightly bitter or spicy bright green leaf is actually from the herb family. Pictured are two varieties of arugula you might see packaged for supermarkets or loose in the greens section. Arugula originated in the Mediterranean, and it is used in Italian recipes. It goes great on top of pizza or in sandwiches and pairs well with strong cheeses like blue or Parmesan. 

Chicory

Chicory leaves look similar to dandelion leaves except the leaves are yellow in the center and gradually darken. It is bitter, so it is usually mixed with other greens in salad. Alternatively, you can cook chicory on the stovetop by submerging in boiling water until tender and then adding to other ingredients. It goes great with spicy dishes, so add some crushed red pepper flakes.

 

Endive

This cousin to chicory is small and has white leaves with green or red tips packed in tightly from the head of the Endive. The leaves have a crisp bite with a nutty flavor and it is slightly sweet and a little bitter. Endive makes a healthy alternative to chips when scooping dip or can be added to a salad. Other popular methods for cooking endive are to place it on the grill or serve stuffed with blue cheese.

 

Radicchio

Radicchio is another member of the chicory family. It was a waxy texture and bitter flavor; cooking brings out a nutty taste. It looks similar to cabbage, with red leaves and white veins. Radicchio is usually served raw in salads or grilled and served with a gorgonzola vinaigrette sprinkled with chopped roasted walnuts. 

Escarole

Another chicory relative, escarole has a pale green color and flat board leaves. It is less better than the other members or the chicory family and tastes great when sauteed with onions and garlic. It goes great in bean recipes or can be added to soups for extra nutrition and fiber.

 

Kale

Kale is in the cabbage family and the leaves can be green or even a beautiful purple. There are many varieties, but all have very hearty leaves that are long and attached to woody stalks. Kale is often used in salads or can be added to soups. Kale chips make a great, healthy snack; break into bite-sized pieces and lightly spray with olive oil and bake at 350°F until crisp and sprinkle with salt.

Mesclun

Mesclun is a mixture of assorted small baby greens. The word “mescla” comes from the South of France and means mixture. These leaves range in colors and textures and their taste varies from bitter to sweet. Serve these baby greens with crumbled blue cheese, sliced strawberries and a light vinaigrette for a refreshing salad.

 

Mache

Mache greens originated in France during the 17th century and are now available in your local grocery stores. These very small, sweet dark greens with a slight nutty flavor are also called “lambs lettuce.” This makes are great salad; top with roasted beets, goat cheese and drizzle with a delicate vinaigrette.

 


Summer Salad Dressing Recipes

It’s summer and we are constantly craving salads here at Hamilton Beach. Leafy greens are all over the farmers markets and grocery stores and they are calling our names! We eat salads with kale, Bibb lettuce, romaine, and arugula. A great way to keep salads interesting is to change them up every time, so we add toppings like chicken, toasted nuts, fresh tomatoes, sliced onions, strawberries, and goat cheese. Of course, a traditional Caesar salad or a simple salad with blue cheese can be equally delightful, and we know there is one stand-out way to ramp up your salads at home (and it’s really easy!): make your own salad dressing.

That’s right, salad dressing doesn’t just come from the grocery store. Dressings are deceptively easy to make at home, can store easily in the fridge, and will boost the flavor of your salads instantly. We love to use our Hamilton Beach Single-Serve Blender to make salad dressings in under a minute. Simply add the ingredients, pulse, and pour over your salad. You can even serve it and store it in the blender jar! If you don’t have a single-serve blender, you can add the ingredients to a Mason jar, seal, and shake, or just mix in a bowl with a fork or whisk. You get much more flavor than store-bought dressings that have been sitting on shelves for days or weeks, and you can avoid the processed ingredients and additives typically found in many factory-made dressings. It’s too easy not to make your own dressing at home, and you will probably find it’s a lot cheaper, too.

Today, we are focusing on creamy dressings – these are some of the most popular dressings people buy, particularly Caesar and blue cheese. These easy homemade versions will make your fresh veggies sing and soon you’ll be bringing salad to the table every day.

 


Creamy Caesar Dressing

To add creaminess to this recipe, we use mayonnaise instead of raw or coddled eggs; it should keep in the fridge for a week. It is easiest to make in the Hamilton Beach Single-Serve Blender.
Ingredients
3 anchovies
1 clove garlic
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
​1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup olive oil
Instructions
For dressing, place anchovies, garlic, lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and black pepper in blender.
Blend until mixture is creamy.
Add mayonnaise, Parmesan cheese and oil to blender. Blend until smooth.
Serve immediately or refrigerate.
Everyday Good Thinking http://everydaygoodthinking.com/

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Test Kitchen Tip: For thinner dressing, add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached.



 


Blue Cheese Dressing
YIELDS: 3 servings

The tanginess of blue cheese works with the creaminess of mayonnaise, milk and sour cream to create the perfect blue cheese dressing. It tastes great over a simple salad or as a side to spicy Buffalo wings. Make a smaller batch by cutting the recipe in half and mixing the dressing in our Single-Serve blender.
Ingredients
1 clove garlic
8 ounces blue cheese
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Instructions
Place garlic in blender jar.
Process on HIGH until chopped.
Add remaining ingredients to blender jar.
Process on HIGH until blended and still chunky.
Serve immediately or refrigerate.
Everyday Good Thinking http://everydaygoodthinking.com/

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