Pear & Kale Salad

One of my favorite lunches are salads, they are good for a light meal and can be filling depending on what all goes in it, such as nuts, croutons, meat, cheese, fruits and vegetables. They are fresh and packed full of nutrients and antioxidants.

Until recently, I always made salads with lettuce whether it be romaine, bibb, red leaf, etc. The only living creature in my house that ate kale was our rabbit, Opie, who was an 18 lb. French Lop who thought he was one of the dogs.

I start off with freshly washed kale leaves that I separate from the stem by holding the stem firmly in one hand and grab the leaves like a claw on each side of the stem with the other hand then pull down. I chop the leaves into bite size pieces then toss them with a French vinaigrette.  Yes, I seem to have lots of recipes with French vinaigrette, it is so versatile, easy to make and works well with so many different salads and makes a good marinade. I try to make a practice of tossing greens with the dressing before adding other ingredients so you use less dressing.

I top the salad with bleu cheese crumbles, walnuts and a sliced pear.  This salad has it all, tons of texture, pungent bleu cheese, sweet pear and tart vinaigrette.  It is great for a light meal and also a great side salad as well. While the nutritional data provided seems high, the fats in this salad are good fats coming from walnuts and olive oil, saturated fat is low (<9).  This salad contains more than 100% of your recommended allowance of Omega-6 oil and nearly 200% of Omega-3 oil.  Also over 100% for vitamin A and copper and packs nearly 300% of vitamin K. 

Pear & Kale Salad
Serves 1
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups kale, chopped
  2. 1 ripe pear, sliced
  3. 1 oz. bleu cheese crumbles
  4. 1 oz. walnuts, chopped
For the Dressing
  1. 2 tablespoons white or red wine vinegar
  2. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  3. 1 tsp. whole grain mustard
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Instructions
  1. Start off my combining all the ingredients for the dressing, mix well.
  2. Place kale in bowl or plate, toss with dressing.
  3. Sprinkle top of salad with bleu cheese and walnuts.
  4. Arrange pear slices on top and serve.
Calories
556 cal
Fat
41 g
Protein
13 g
Carbs
37 g
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Healthy Southern Cooking http://healthysoutherncooking.com/

Apple & Red Onion Slaw

I created this slaw to go on top of pulled pork but it works good with any sort of barbecue or picnic and would be good topped on many different sandwiches, fish tacos and hot dogs.  Not only does this slaw have a burst of great flavors; sweet, tart and savory but a great crunch.

This slaw starts out with shredded green cabbage and shredded carrots.  If you are short for time or if you prefer, you can use the already shredded cabbage mix in the produce department, most also have red cabbage as well and that will just add more color to this slaw.


Thinly sliced red onion and matchstick size julienned apples are added to the cabbage mix.  As far as apples go, you can use sweet or tart or a mix of both.  For presentation purposes I would use an apple with reddish skin but it is totally up to you or what you have on hand.

The slaw is then tossed with a simple French vinaigrette which is olive oil, apple cider vinegar, whole grain mustard and a tad bit agave nectar.

Toss and serve as a side or as a condiment!

 

Apple & Red Onion Slaw
Serves 8
Prep Time
30 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 cups green cabbage, shredded
  2. 1 cup carrots, shredded
  3. 1/3 cup red onions, thinly sliced
  4. 3 medium apples, julienned matchstick size
For the Dressing
  1. 1/4 cup olive oil
  2. 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  3. 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
  4. 1 to 2 tablespoons agave nectar
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Instructions
  1. In a large bowl combine cabbage, carrots, red onions and apples, loosely toss to mix.
  2. Cover and keep cabbage mix cool in refrigerator until ready to serve.
  3. In a small bowl or cruet, combine all the ingredients for the dressing. As far as the agave nectar goes, depends on how sweet you would like it. I suggest adding one tablespoon and mix then sample and see if you need more.
  4. Pour dressing over slaw and toss.
  5. Serve cool.
Notes
  1. Nutrition facts are based on 2 tablespoons of agave nectar.
Calories
119 cal
Fat
7 g
Protein
1 g
Carbs
14 g
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Healthy Southern Cooking http://healthysoutherncooking.com/

Pan Roasted Potatoes with Crispy Sage

I think potatoes are one of the most versatile vegetables there is. Although I know many treat them as a vegetable, I did low carbohydrate for so long I treat potatoes and corn more like a grain. They come in a wide variety; russet, fingerling, Yukon gold, sweet potato, etc. and they all possess their own unique traits for color, taste and texture.

One of my favorite potatoes is the Yukon gold.  They have a naturally golden color, buttery taste with a creamy texture.  They are great boiled, fried and roasted. Continue reading “Pan Roasted Potatoes with Crispy Sage”

Southern Butterbeans

So what’s a butterbean, you may ask.  It refers to the larger, flatter, paler lima bean which when cooked has a buttery taste and texture to it. The other variety of lima bean is a baby lima which is small, firmer and greener.  To try to simplify this, a pot of lima beans that are large, beige or pale yellow, served alone as a side dish are butterbeans.  Succotash, which is another Southern favorite, consists of sweet corn and small, green, firm lima beans.

Lima beans have been cultivated since 2000 AD, mainly in Central and South America.  They originated in Peru and when they were introduced to Europe and America, the crates were labeled from Lima, and that is how both varieties of these beans got their names. Continue reading “Southern Butterbeans”

Pub Cheese

Pub cheese, also known as beer cheese, is a spreadable, pungent cheese that is always a crowd pleaser.  While the name may imply that it is of Irish origins (pub), it actually has its origins in Kentucky where they hold an annual beer cheese festival.

Most pub cheeses have sharp cheddar, beer and garlic with a bite of cayenne.  Other ingredients can be horseradish, dry mustard, chives and Worcestershire sauce. Continue reading “Pub Cheese”

Turkey Chili

Chili con carne originated in Texas and is recognized as the state’s official dish.  Chili stands expanded throughout the United states with a wide variety of different techniques and flavors depending on location such as Cincinnati and Chicago, much like styles of barbecue.

Chili cook offs are one of the most popular cooking contests that exist in the United States and chili just doesn’t come in a bowl, it tops hot dogs, burgers, baked potatoes and fries, to name a few.

This is a healthy, light version of chili con carne that is packed with flavor, if you don’t tell anyone they won’t know it is ground turkey instead of ground beef. Continue reading “Turkey Chili”

Crowd Pleasers: Taquitos

Taquitos are a Mexican treat and are also known by other names; taco dorados, rolled tacos and flautas, although flautas tends to be larger in size and sometimes made with flour tortillas.  The name taquito is Spanish for small taco while they may be small in size they are not small in flavor.

These are great for game day, parties and celebrations, like Cinco de Mayo.  You serve them warm with salsa, hot sauce, guacamole, ranch dressing, sour cream, etc.

Because everyone has different preferences for fillings, I have made four variations of this recipe which will yield 15 taquitos per flavor. If you want all of them the same then you will need to multiply the recipe by four, or if you want half and half then multiply the recipe by two, and so on. Continue reading “Crowd Pleasers: Taquitos”

Honey-Thyme Chicken Tenders

If you are a frequent visitor to this site, you have probably discovered that I tend to primarily use chicken tenders or thin cut chicken breasts that are also known as scaloppine cut which in Italian means small scallop, thin cut of meat.  The reason I choose to use these particular cuts the most is because it is the easiest way for me to monitor my portion sizes as I try to keep poultry, meat and fish at around 4 ounces per serving.  Usually 2 chicken tenders or one thin cut chicken breast equates to 4 ounces.

This recipe yields a very savory, juicy and tender chicken.  The sauce is light with a hint of tart from the lemon and sweet from the honey. It pairs well with any sort of side dish; salad, rice, pasta, vegetables, potatoes, and so on.   Continue reading “Honey-Thyme Chicken Tenders”

Peanut Coleslaw

Many people associate coleslaw with the South but it actually comes from the Netherlands where it is known as koolsla.  Here in America it is often a staple for barbecues, a topping for pulled pork and goes well with fried chicken.

Peanut coleslaw is something I had at a barbecue restaurant, I loved it so much more than regular or traditional coleslaw.  It was crunchy, tangy and very satisfying, I looked forward to it more than I did the rest of the meal.  Of course the restaurant wouldn’t give out their recipe so I had to play around with it until I could make a copycat version of it, which after some tweaking, I preferred more than theirs. Continue reading “Peanut Coleslaw”

Steak ~ Three Ways

I know that cutting back on red meat is healthy for you, I try to keep it for once a week and when I choose steaks I choose a leaner cut of meat and a thin cut.  These are thin cut New York strip steaks trimmed of fat, each one is 3 to 4 ounces.

Normally when I pan sear steaks I do it with a combination of stove top followed by the oven but since these are so thin, they are easy to do just on the stove top.

First thing I do is rub olive oil on both sides of the steak followed with generous amount of sea salt and ground black pepper.

I heat my grill pan over medium-high heat and once it is hot put the steaks on.  They should sizzle as soon as you put them on the grill.  I cook each one about 1-1/2 to 2 minutes per side then remove the pan from the heat and they continue to cook, especially in cast iron.  

In my family, no one likes the same toppings on their steaks, we all have different preferences.   Continue reading “Steak ~ Three Ways”