Jiffy French Dressing for Salad and two lunch salads, October 4, 2013

Life is Beautiful  is the title that I choose for my blog  when I started it.

Lately , I put other family members first and have less time for myself, my husband  and my house working a full -time job.  It has caused me to delay my own check-ups, the first being my dental cleaning, was due in December.   Each month, I knew this, yet I had to bring mom for many follow -up visits both in January and February for the dentist.   until now, I spend every week house sitting ,and  working alongside the  ” Visiting Angel” coming to mom’s house; and during the months of July and August, taking my sister three times a week for Physical Therapy, left no chance to take them to the beach even for one day.  Also, getting their porch fixed and selecting and ordering porch railings  a priority.( expect a phone call any day this week that ready for installation.  As long as it comes before the weather turns colder.

After I received a follow-up phone call,In August from my dental receptionist,  , asking  where are you? I said , “taking care of my mothers house, I don’t have time for my appointments” . I now in the process of getting a crown on a molar tooth For a cavity.  This will cost big bucks.

At home,  we prepare foods that  are good for a couple of days in a stew pot, like lentils , with carrots, sweet potato  in a tomato based broth, but I post a lunch salad recipe this morning.

Jiffy French Dressing  ( not associated with the store box mixes)

Blend well:

1 Tbsp sugar or Sugar substitute,

1 tsp Paprika

1 tsp dry mustard

1 tsp salt

1/8 tsp pepper

Put into a 1 – pint Screw-top jar.  Add

1 cup salad oil ( canola oil , lower in cholesterol I buy what is on sale. )

1/4 cup vinegar or lemon juice

Cover jar tightly and shake vigorously to blend.   store in  the refrigerator.  Shake well before using.

Makes : 1 1/ 4 cup French dressing

Salads:

Salad for one person

Ring- Around salad

For each salad, place on a salad plate, 1 lettuce  leaf , washed.

In center of lettuce, place 1 slice pineapple , well -drained,

Around the slice of pineapple, arrange

6 orange sections

Place in center of pineapple, one apricot half , cut side up.

Fill apricot with 1 tsp jiffy French dressing

6 raisins.

Makes 1 salad

Peach and Cottage cheese salad

For each salad, place one crisp lettuce leaf on salad plate,  and top with 2 peach halves ,

Place the peach halves close together, rounded sides down . Then arrange from the center of one peach half to the center of the other

1large green pepper ring .

Inside green pepper ring, place 1/4 cup cottage cheese and shape into a mound .  Circle cheese mound with 2 or 3 rings of green pepper.

The design is of a cowboy. The peach halves are the rim of cowboy hat, the cheese forms the crown, and pepper rings are bands around the sombrero.  If desired, drizzle over the top of the ” hat crown,  Jiffy French dressing.

When it’s time for lunch, Choose  a pretty plate from your cabinet, it does not have to  match. I have a set of 4 clear glass salad plates and a few brightly colored plates that  I purchased at Home Goods/ or Marshall’s. 

I have a favorite plate that has the colors pink and green and beige, pink flowers from a well-known pattern, I purchase dishes in sets of Two.

Greek Vegetable Pie

 

This vegetable pie is made with an unusual brown rice, walnut and olive crust and is filled with leeks, red bell peppers, asparagus, tangy feta cheese, and smooth cream cheese.   This is a good recipe for leftover brown rice.  ( Moosewood Restaurant cookbook).

GREEK VEGETABLE PIE

Ingredients:

Crust:

2 cups cooked brown rice 

 1/2 cup walnuts

1/4 cup pitted Kalamata olives

Filling:

2 Tablespoons olive oil

3 cups asparagus, 1 inch pieces

1/4 tsp salt

3 cups thinly sliced leeks, ( white and tender green parts), thoroughly  rinsed.

1 cup diced red bell peppers

3 ounces Neufchatel cheese

1 cup grated or crumbled feta cheese

3 large eggs, lightly beaten

1/3 cup chopped fresh dill

pinch of ground black pepper

Directions:

1.  In a food processor, pulse the crust ingredients until crumbly.  Set aside.

2.  Warm the oil in a skillet or saucepan on medium heat.  Add the asparagus and salt and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Stir in the leeks and cook for 3 minutes.  Add the bell peppers, cover and continue to cook, stirring occasionally; until all of the vegetables are tender , 5 or 6 minutes.  Place the Neufchatel ( or cream cheese) cheese on top of the vegetables, cover, turn off the heat, and let sit for several minutes to soften.

3.  Meanwhile,press the crust mixture into a lightly oiled 9- inch pie plate.

4.  Stir the Neufchatel cheese throughout the vegetables.  Add 3/4 cup of the feta cheese and the eggs, dill, and black pepper to the skillet and mix well.  Spread the filling into the pie crust ( brown rice) and top with the remaining Feta cheese. 

5.  Bake in a preheated 350 degree ( F ) Fahrenheit oven until the filling is set and golden, about 35 minutes.

 

 

Variations:

Use 2 or 3 chopped , softened sun-dried tomatoes in place of the olives in the crust.

Use broccoli instead of asparagus in the filling.

Serving and Menu ideas:

 

Serve with a tossed green salad with pear and thyme vinaigrette (recipe), or with a classic Greek salad

For an excellent  first course, serve Greek Tomato yogurt soup (p 125).

A fine dessert is a big bowl of fresh strawberries and or cherries.

Greek Vegetable Pie  Nutritional information:

per serving:

calories: 364

protein 14 grams (g.)

carbohydrate 30 g.

dietary fiber 5 g

total fat 22 g

saturated fat 8 g

monounsaturated fat 8 g cholesterol 139 mg

sodium 716 g.

 

Recipe Pear and Thyme Vinaigrette

 

1 ripe pear, cored and chopped

1/3 cup olive oil

2 Tablespoons cider vinegar

2 Tablespoons water or unsweetened apple or pear juice

1 tsp Dijon mustard

 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leave s

1/4 tsp salt  generous dash of ground black pepper

1 small garlic clove , pressed or minced (optional

maple syrup optional.

 

1.  Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth and creamy.  If the dressing is too thick add a little more water or juice.  Add some maple syrup if   you want it a little sweeter.

2.  This dressing will keep fresh in the refrigerator for 3 or 4 days.   I f the chilled dressing congeals, bring it to room temperature before serving.

 

On milder greens, its sweetness balances dishes with a bitter edge  such as pasta with Broccoli Rabe and beans.

 

Pear and Thyme Vinaigrette

Nutritional information , Per 1 Tablespoon:

Calories: 116

Protein:  1 g

Carb: 14 g

Dietary Fiber:   2 g

Total Fat:   7 grams 

Saturated Fat:   1 gram

Monounsaturated fat:  5 g

Cholesterol:  0 gram

sodium:  151 g

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