Posts Tagged ‘recipes’

Veggie Salad + Ricotta Salata

October 29, 2014

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This lunch includes some leftover chicken from takeout, sliced apple, and quick-pickled dill-radish salad atop carrot slices and arugula with chopped hazelnuts and batons of ricotta salata to eat as is or to crumble on the salad.

Today I’m giving an example of how I pack my Laptop Lunch box.

Salad for lunch again is boring! Usually. This time, though, salty ricotta salata and crunchy hazelnuts save the day. Thanks to my CSA delivery, I frequently have a lot of fresh vegetables to use in my lunch box. The challenge for me is to get away from the usual carrot sticks/radish slices and pack an exciting lunch. I’m not the kind of person who will pass up restaurant lunch for carrot sticks!

I almost always pack my lunch the night before. This time, the radishes were sliced, then packed by themselves in an apple cider vinegar, diced shallot, and olive oil dressing with sprigs of dill. They marinated in one of my spill-proof medium containers. In the medium open-top container, I put arugula, carrot slices, and ricotta salata so that nothing would get too soggy. For the same reason, the toasted hazelnuts went into the smallest container and that went into the section with the sliced apple. Everything fit neatly inside without leaking or making anything soggy.

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When lunch time came, I shook up the radishes in dressing with the arugula, sprinkled the nuts on top, and had a tasty meal. I later crumbled some of that cheese up – I definitely recommend ricotta salata for your salads or snacking. The flavor is fresh, like farmers’ cheese, but it’s very salty and crumbly. I sometimes use it as a substitute for feta in recipes, but it’s less creamy than feta. What do you do to liven up your fresh veggies?

French Toast for Friday

September 12, 2014

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The weekend and leisurely breakfasts approach! I think it’s about time for some French toast. When I buy a baguette or boule of sourdough, I like to make breakfast with the leftover or slightly stale portion I always seem to have.* This recipe will use up about half a loaf, sliced 1/2 inch – 1 inch thick according to your preference.

In a bowl, beat an egg. Add 1/2 cup milk, 2 tablespoons sugar, a pinch of cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Soak the bread slices in the egg mixture until it has all been absorbed.

Next, melt a pat of butter in a frying pan over medium heat and sprinkle both sides of the French toast slices with additional sugar. When the butter is frothy, add the bread slices and cook until golden brown. Don’t let the pan get too hot or the middle of the toasts won’t have time to cook before the surfaces burn.

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I drizzled this batch with a little wildflower honey, but I prefer French toast without syrup if I can have a lot of fresh fruit.

*Side note: slightly stale bread never gets thrown out around here. If it isn’t destined for French toast, I throw it into the food processor and pulse until I have homemade bread crumbs. They seem to keep pretty well in a ziploc in the freezer. Occasionally, I will cube the leftover bread and make croutons, which are great for chopped salads panzanella-style. More on that later, I hope!