Diet Detective: Health summer salad recipes - WBAY

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Diet Detective: Health summer salad recipes

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 Here are a few healthy summer salads by top chefs.
 
Jamie's Cranberry Spinach Salad
 
Healthy Recipe provided by Allrecipes.com, submitted by Jamie Hensley.
 
Makes 8 servings

1 tablespoon butter
3/4 cup blanched and slivered almonds
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
1 tablespoon poppy seeds
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons minced onion
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 pound spinach, rinsed and torn into bite-size pieces
1 cup dried cranberries

In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir almonds into butter and cook until lightly toasted. Remove from heat and let cool.
 
In a medium bowl, whisk together the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sugar, onion, paprika, white wine vinegar, cider vinegar and vegetable oil.
 
In a large bowl, combine the spinach with the toasted almonds and cranberries. Just before serving, add the seed and oil mixture and toss.
 
Grilled Shrimp, Romaine and Radicchio Salad
 
Healthy recipe from Grill To Perfection: Two Champion Pit Masters' Recipes and Techniques for Unforgettable Backyard Grilling (April 2014 / Page Street Publishing) by Andy Husbands and Chris Hart, with Andrea Pyenson.
 
Makes 4 to 6 servings

Juice of 2 lemons
1/3 cup olive oil
1 shallot, minced
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
4 leaves fresh basil, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Olive oil, for grilling
8 to 12 shrimp (U-12), peeled and deveined
1 head romaine, outer leaves removed, quartered through the core (no need to cut off the end)
1 small head radicchio, loose leaves removed, quartered through the core (no need to cut off the end)
1 wedge (about 4 ounces) Parmesan or your favorite hard cheese, for garnish

Spread an even layer of unlit charcoal in the bottom of the grill. Fill a chimney with charcoal. Stuff two sheets of newspaper in the bottom of the chimney and light it. When the coals are fully engaged ¬ you should see flames peeking over the top ¬ pour them over the unlit charcoal. If using a gas grill, light the gas and adjust the temperature on both sides to high.
 
Make the vinaigrette: In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, olive oil, shallot, parsley, basil and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
 
When you can hold your hands over the fire for no more than 3 to 5 seconds, clean the grill grate. Lightly oil the shrimp and season with salt and pepper. Grill for 1 minute, rotate 90 degrees and then flip. Continue to cook for 1 to 2 minutes more, until the outer skin is pinkish red with a slight char on it and the split side has just turned from translucent to white. Remove the shrimp from the grill, place in the bowl with the vinaigrette and toss.
 
Make the salad: Lightly oil the romaine and radicchio and season with salt and pepper. Place the romaine quarters on the grill and cook for 1 minute per side (there are 3 sides), until it is slightly charred and lightly warmed. Transfer to a cutting board and roughly chop the leaves; discard the cores. Scatter the leaves over a serving platter. Repeat with the radicchio, and scatter the leaves over the romaine. Spoon the shrimp and vinaigrette evenly over the lettuces. Using a vegetable peeler, shave some Parmesan over the salad. Serve immediately.
 
The Holy Kale
 
Healthy Recipe by Lauryn Evarts, author of The Skinny Confidential (Page Street Publishing, 2014).
 
Makes 2 servings

2 1/2 heaping handfuls of kale, chopped
1 handful of baby arugula, washed
1 tangerine, peeled and sectioned
1 tomato, sliced
1 cup diced purple or white cauliflower cup chopped scallions
1/2 diced avocado
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 to 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon
Sea salt, to taste
Black pepper, to taste
Rosemary sprigs or basil leaves, for garnish

Combine kale, arugula, tangerine, tomato, cauliflower, scallions and avocado
in a large bowl.
 
To make the dressing, combine all the remaining ingredients except the garnish. Don't think I'm weird, but I like to shake my dressing up in a martini shaker (sans ice, obviously).
 
Toss salad with the dressing. Add a sprig of rosemary or a few leaves of basil for garnish.
 
Roasted Tomato Salad with Mint
 
Healthy recipe by Jennifer McGruther, author of The Nourished Kitchen (Ten Speed Press, 2014).
 
Makes 4 servings

2 pounds cherry or grape tomatoes, halved
1 small red onion, sliced 1/8 inch thick
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons finely ground unrefined sea salt
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
 
Arrange the tomatoes and red onion in a single layer on the lined baked sheet. Drizzle with the olive oil, and sprinkle with the salt.
 
Roast for 40 to 45 minutes, until the tomato juices thicken to the consistency of maple syrup and the tomatoes wrinkle. Spoon the roasted tomatoes and onion into a bowl, toss in the mint, and serve immediately before the mint wilts in the residual heat of the tomatoes.
 
Green Rice Salad with Nectarines and Corn
 
Healthy recipe by Kimberley Hasselbrink, author of Vibrant Food: Celebrating the Ingredients, Recipes, and Colors of Each Season (Ten Speed Press, 2014).
 
Makes 4 to 6 servings

For the Green Rice:
3 4 cup brown basmati rice
11/4 cups water, plus 1 to 2 tablespoons more for sauce
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup loosely packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1 small jalapeño, seeded and chopped
Zest and juice of 1 small lime
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Fine sea salt

For the Grilled Corn:
2 small ears fresh corn, husks and silk removed
Extra-virgin olive oil
Fine sea salt
1/2 lime
2 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup loosely packed fresh cilantro leaves, plus more for garnish
2 medium-ripe nectarines, pitted and thinly sliced lengthwise
1/2 cup crumbled queso fresco

In a saucepan, combine the rice and water. Cover and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender, about 30 minutes. Let the rice stand for a few minutes, then fluff. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
 
Preheat the broiler.
 
To grill the corn, lightly oil both ears of corn and place in a small baking dish. Broil about 6 inches from the heat source, turning every few minutes, until golden and blackened in spots, 10 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside until cool enough to handle. Using a large, sharp knife, cut the kernels from the cob to yield about 1 cup. If you have more than this amount, save it for another use. Transfer the kernels to a bowl; toss with a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lime. Set aside.
 
Transfer the rice to a large bowl. In a blender, combine the cilantro, parsley, jalapeño, lime zest and juice, olive oil, a pinch of salt and 1 tablespoon water. Blend until smooth. Add up to 1 more tablespoon of water to thin the sauce if it's too thick. Spoon the mixture over the rice, scraping any remaining sauce out of the blender with a spatula, and mix until the rice is evenly coated.
 
To finish, add the corn and additional parsley and cilantro to the rice. Toss to combine. Transfer the rice to a serving platter. Sprinkle the nectarines and queso fresco over the rice in even layers. Garnish with additional parsley and cilantro. Best served immediately. Can be made up to a day in advance; bring to room temperature before serving.
 
Asparagus Pad Thai Salad

Healthy recipe by Terry Hope Romero, author of Salad Samurai: 100 Cutting-Edge, Ultra-Hearty, Easy-to-Make Salads You Don't Have to Be Vegan to Love (Da Capo Lifelong Books, 2014, reprinted with permission).
 
Makes 2 servings

For the Pad Thai Salad
4 ounces Pad Thai rice noodles
1 2 pound asparagus
1 cup mung bean sprouts, washed and dried
1 cup lightly packed fresh Thai or sweet basil leaves, chiffonaded
1 cup lightly packed fresh cilantro, coarsely chopped
2 scallions, green part only, thinly sliced
1 recipe Lemongrass Tofu (recipe follows)
1 2 cup roasted peanuts, coarsely ground
Lime wedges and Sriracha, for serving
 
For the Toasted Shallot Dressing
1 4 cup minced shallots
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons coconut sugar or organic brown sugar, plus more for serving
1 tablespoon tamarind concentrate
1 tablespoon soy sauce, plus more for serving

Boil the rice noodles according to package directions and cook only until al dente (1 or 2 minutes less than directed). Drain, rinse with cold water, and cover with cold water until ready to use.
 
Wash and trim the tough stem ends from the asparagus. Trim the heads from the asparagus and set aside. Use a Y-shaped peeler to shred the asparagus stalks into long ribbons, and slice into thin strips the remaining pieces that are too awkward to shred. Transfer the asparagus ribbons to a mixing bowl and add the mung bean sprouts, basil, cilantro and scallions.
 
In a skillet over medium heat, fry the shallots, garlic and ginger in the oil until the shallots are golden brown, about 3 minutes. Add the asparagus tips, sauté 1 minute, remove from the heat, and cool for 2 minutes. Transfer the asparagus tip mixture to the bowl with the ribbons. Drain
the rice noodles and add to the asparagus salad.
 
Whisk together the lime juice, sugar, tamarind and soy sauce and pour over the salad. Toss to coat everything with dressing. Mound the salad in serving bowls, garnish with strips of Lemongrass Tofu and sprinkle with peanuts. Devour, but graciously offer wedges of lime,
Sriracha, a small dish of coconut sugar and soy sauce for dining companions to season their own dish to taste.
 
The Spin
Plan ahead like a samurai: Prepare the Lemongrass Tofu a day in advance and heat up just before serving.
 
Samurai Stylings
Zucchini Noodle Pad Thai
 
Replace the rice noodles with homemade zucchini or yellow summer squash noodles for an even lighter dish. You'll need a little more than 1/2 pound of squash.

Select long, slender young squash, scrub clean and trim off the stems.

Use a Y-shaped peeler to create long, thin strands similar to the asparagus "noodles" for the above salad. Proceed as directed with the rest of the recipe.
 
Lemongrass Tofu
 
Zesty lemongrass tofu is great served warm or chilled, and it adds the perfect hearty element to Asian-inspired salads.
 
Makes 2 servings as a salad topping

1 pound extra-firm or super-firm tofu (no pressing necessary)
2 tablespoons maple syrup
4 teaspoons tamari
1 heaping tablespoon finely chopped fresh or prepared lemongrass
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons peanut oil or olive oil

If using extra-firm tofu, press the tofu first. Slice the tofu into thin 1 4-inch strips.
 
Preheat the oven to 400°F and coat the bottom and sides of a 13 x 9-inch ceramic or glass baking dish with cooking spray.
 
Combine the maple syrup, tamari, lemongrass, garlic and oil in the baking dish and whisk together. Arrange the tofu slices in the marinade and set aside while the oven is preheating, about 15 minutes. Occasionally stir the tofu strips.
 
Bake the tofu for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip the strips over. Bake another 15 to 20 minutes, until the strips are golden and the marinade is absorbed. Serve warm or chilled. Store in the refrigerator and consume within 2 days for best flavor.

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CHARLES PLATKIN, Ph.D., is a nutrition and public health advocate and founder of DietDetective.com. Copyright 2014 by Charles Platkin. All rights reserved. Sign up for the free Diet Detective newsletter at www.DietDetective.com

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