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”

Apple Pie

What’s more American than apple pie?  Well, with that being said, apple pie is actually from Western Europe but given that many of the settlers that came to the United States were from there, it makes perfect sense. Do you remember when your mama or gammy would bake apple pie, that aroma would fill the air and it seemed like forever until it was time for dessert after you smelled that sweet cinnamon all day long. Imagine the settlers, they came to America and all we had were tiny, tart crabapple trees so they had to plant apples and wait for the trees to mature and produce fruit, kind of dwarfs the few hours you had to endure to get your slice. Continue reading “Apple Pie”

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”

Buttermilk Cornbread

Cornbread is a quick bread, meaning it doesn’t contain yeast and requires no time to rise.  It has deep roots with the Native Americans and the colonists that settled in the southern colonies.  In the south it is a staple in most households and Southern cornbread is not sweet nor fluffy like a cake.  Ours is grainier, more dense and made with delicious buttermilk and served with butter.  You may be surprised to know that buttermilk has fewer calories and fat than that of milk.

The main ingredient in cornbread is, you guessed it, cornmeal.  Cornmeal comes in a few varieties; white, yellow and even blue. Typically cornbread usually uses the yellow, which tends to me the most common variety.  Corn is a cheap grain to grow and there is usually an abundance of it, not only here in the United States but in Mexico as well, where Mayans used the grain to make masa for tortillas and tamales.  Here in the South, cornmeal is commonly used not only for cornbread but also corn pone, hushpuppies and Johnnycakes, which are actually a Northern dish. 

Cornbread can be baked or fried and comes in a variety of forms.  This recipe is the baked variety which can be baked in molds, muffin tins, skillets or pans. Continue reading “Buttermilk Cornbread”

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”

Ranch Roasted Carrots

As I have mentioned in previous posts, I was never exposed to much in the way of vegetables when I was growing up.  My father was forced to eat them as a child and hated them.  He probably didn’t hate the vegetable itself but more likely in the way in which they were cooked, or should I say, overcooked and probably minimal if any seasoning.

Some of the vegetables we did have when I was growing up were, potatoes, peas, corn and carrots, I’ve always loved carrots. Maybe it was the brainwashing that they are good for your eyes and I didn’t want to wear glasses.  Whenever there was a party with a veggie platter, I always went for the carrots and dipped them into gobs of ranch dressing.   Continue reading “Ranch Roasted Carrots”

Biscuits & Gravies

Yes, you read that right . . . gravies! Plural, because we are going to do two different gravies.

The first gravy is a staple in the South, sausage gravy.  Here in the South sausage gravy is a standard in most households. It is served not only at breakfast time but lunch and supper too.  Sausage gravy is great on mashed potatoes, fried chicken, chicken fried steak and of course, biscuits.  If you are like me, I can eat sausage gravy on its own.

Sausage gravy starts out with, you guessed it, sausage!  You want a good quality breakfast sausage, like the ones that come in the big roll that you slice into patties. The problem with most of the pork sausage at the grocery store is that they are high in fat. Ah, so you think the logical substitute, turkey sausage but the problem with most turkey sausage is they are lacking the fat that you will need to make the gravy.  Another problem is that many manufacturers of turkey sausage sell them precooked and you need it raw. What do you do? Simple, make your own.  I know it sounds too complicated but it is really no more complicated than browning ground beef with seasoning. Continue reading “Biscuits & Gravies”