I don’t know what the weather has been like in your area, but it’s been hot here! We’ve experienced instant summer via an April heat wave!
When the temperature soars, my desire to cook nosedives so I often turn to salads for a filling and low fuss meal. Three of my favorites are Tomato Caprese Salad, Steak Salad, and a perfectly pleasing Pasta Salad.
Salads are a great meal choice because they’re usually a quick fix and allow you to create a salad that specifically suits your family’s tastes. Remove ingredients you don’t like and feel free to add other ingredients that you prefer. Add yesterday’s leftover chicken or beef so nothing goes to waste!
Tomato Caprese Salad
4 ripe tomatoes, cut into wedges
14 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, diced
1 red onion, sliced thin
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
salt and pepper to taste
Mix oil and vinegar. Add remaining ingredients and toss.
1 pound sirloin steak, cut into bite sized pieces
1 head Romaine lettuce, chopped
½ cup small red onion, thinly sliced
½ cup mushrooms, sliced
1 (8 ounce jar) roasted red peppers, sliced
4 plum tomatoes, diced
1 carrot, shredded
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
Toss the lettuce, onion, mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, carrots, steak, and cheese together in a large bowl. Top with your favorite salad dressing and enjoy.
1 (8 ounce) box small pasta, cooked and drained
2 eggs hard boiled eggs, chopped
2 ounces cooked ham, cut into bite size chunks
1 (10 ounce) package frozen peas, thawed
1 small red onion, chopped
1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
3/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon mustard
1 teaspoon hot sauce
salt, black pepper, paprika, and garlic powder, to taste
In a large serving bowl, toss together the pasta, egg, ham, peas, onions, and cheese. In a separate bowl, mix together the mayonnaise, sour cream, mustard, and hot sauce. Stir dressing until well blended.
Pour dressing over the pasta and toss to coat thoroughly. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, and garlic powder and toss again. Cover tightly and chill at least 4 hours or overnight for best flavor.
Photo: Courtesy of Laurel Fan (Flickr)
© 2009, Andrea Thorpe. All rights reserved.