Mango-Cucumber Rice Noodle Salad

Mango-Cucumber Rice Noodle Salad 
Make this salad your own!   Omit or add as you like-- even try the vinaigrette on fresh, local honeydew melon garnished with toasted peanuts.  Amazing!  

1/4-cup peanuts
1 pkg. Thin rice noodles

2 tsp. chilli garlic paste (also known sambal oelik)
Juice of 2 large limes
1 tbsp. white sugar
2 tbsp. fish sauce

1 mango, peeled and julienned (ideally not too ripe) 

1 English cucumber seeds removed and cut on a bias
3-4 sprigs of mint leaves, finely sliced
3-4 sprigs of coriander (cilantro), including steps, finely chopped 


  1. Toast peanuts either in a dry frying pan and toast for a few minutes until fragrant or in the oven on a baking sheet (375- 400) for 3-4 minutes. Let cool before chopping.
  2. Soak rice noodles in hot water for 10 minutes (if necessary), then drop into boiling water until just cooked.   Check for directions on the package.   Drain and rinse with cold water for a couple  of minutes.  Set aside until ready to toss with remaining ingredients.  
  3. Whisk together dressing ingredients in a large bowl (chilli paste, lime juice, sugar and fish sauce) until sugar is dissolved. 
  4. Thinly slice mango & cucumber and finely chop herbs.   Stir in with the dressing along with the peanuts and rice noodles.  Enjoy!  

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Classic Italian Garden Salad

Classic Italian Garden Salad 
Serves 4-6 

Whenever we bring this salad to a party people are always grabbing for second helpings!  It is fresh & punchy, with lots of colour and adaptability.   The dressing can be made well ahead of time, in a blender, just be sure to bring it to room temp before serving.   

1 large clove garlic
1⁄4 cup white wine vinegar
1⁄2 tsp.celery salt
1⁄4 tsp. mustard powder
1⁄4 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. sugar
2 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese
1⁄2 cup olive oil
Good pinches each of salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 head of lettuce (iceberg), torn 
1⁄2 red onion, thinly sliced 
1 tomato, in wedges 
Celery & cucumber, sliced (optional) 
6-8 Pepperoncini (pickled) peppers sliced
6-8 Black olives pitted & halved 

  1. Thinly slice red onion and place in a small bowl with cold water and a good pinch of salt. Set aside.
  2. Roughly chop lettuce and place in a bowl. Wedge tomato. Add olives and pepperoncini to bowl, add cucumber & celery if using. 
  3. Make Vinaigrette: Place garlic, vinegar, celery salt, mustard powder, oregano, sugar, 2 tbsp. of parmesan cheese & a good pinch of each salt and pepper in blender. Blend on high for 20-30 seconds.
  4. Reduce blender speed and drizzle in olive oil. Pour into a jar and set aside until ready to toss salad.
  5. Leftover vinaigrette will keep in a jar, refrigerated for a week. Shake well before using.


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Buttermilk Chive Dressing

Buttermilk Chive Dressing
Makes about 2 cups

Always in our fridge, this quick, easy & versatile dressing is light & creamy dressing, but without any preservatives, thickeners, gums, or things you don't necessary need or want when dressing fresh, local produce.   

Be sure to source out high-fat, good quality buttermilk.   Harmony Organic brand is our go-to, but if you can't find a higher fat buttermilk, here's a couple of options:  replace 1/2 cup of the buttermilk with sour cream, OR increase the amount of mayonnaise to 4 tablespoons.   

Fresh garden chives were an easy grab for this, but dill, parsley or even a bit of spring onion would work well.   The key is fresh lemon juice and a really good amount of sea salt & freshly ground black pepper.   

This dressing is ideal on buttery lettuces or spinach, but add in some blue cheese or cheddar cheese and dress that broccoli-bacon salad, or a wedge salad with steak!   

1 clove of garlic, cut in half for easy blending
Juice of 1 lemon 
1 tsp. good quality sea salt
5-6 turns of freshly ground black pepper 
1 tsp. Dijon mustard 
2 tbsp. mayonnaise 
a good handful of snipped chives 
1 1/2 cups Buttermilk 

  1. Place garlic, lemon, salt, pepper, Dijon, mayonnaise and chives in your blender.   Blend until smooth, 30-45 seconds.  Add just a little of the buttermilk if you need to accomplish this. 
  2. Just stir in buttermilk (or blend for 2 seconds).  
  3. Pour into a jar and enjoy! 
  4. Will keep for a week or more in the refrigerator. 

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Crunchy Quinoa Salad

Makes about 6 cups of salad.  Keeps 4-5 days in the fridge (not dressed), so perfect for lunch take-alongs!  Add cooked chicken for extra protein.  

1 cup quinoa (white or multi-coloured) 
1/3 cup whole or sliced almonds
1/4 red cabbage, finely shredded
1 cup grated carrot (about 1 large carrot)
1 cup broccoli florets, in small pieces
2-3 green onions, sliced

1 clove garlic
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. maple syrup
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1⁄2 tsp. kosher salt
1⁄4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 cup oil: can be a combination grapeseed & olive or one or the other

  1. 1.Preheat oven to 375°F. Place almonds on a small baking sheet and toast for 3-4 minutes. Remove, cool and chop if using larger almonds.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add in the quinoa, reduce heat slightly and boil for 10-12 minutes or until al dente.
  3. Strain through a fine mesh strainer and then turn out onto a baking sheet to cool completely.
  4. Meanwhile, in a large bowl place shredded cabbage, grated carrot, broccoli florets, green onion and toasted almonds. Fold in the quinoa.
  5. Make vinaigrette: in a blender place garlic, Dijon, maple syrup, red wine vinegar, kosher salt and pepper. Blend on high for 30 seconds.
  6. Reduce speed and blend in oil.
  7. Toss salad with vinaigrette to taste.

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Retro CREAMY Caesar Salad

The creamy classic version of a Caesar!  

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