With the summer heat here I am craving salads...salads for lunch...salads for dinner...SALADS SALADS SALADS!!! In order to keep things interesting I like to play around with different ingredients and toppings. There is this one bar/pub close to our office that the girls always order salads from. There is one salad in particular that we all love! It's the most filling salad filled with veggies, deli meats and cheeses, all tossed in a creamy buttermilk ranch! I must admit this salad has turned many of my frowns upside down!!! When I make it at home, I try and use less cheese to take the fat value down.
When it comes to dressings I am quite particular. A good ranch is always hard to find and a low fat one is even harder to find! Every time I made this salad at home, it never tasted right...it had an artificial sweetness to it that I just was not a fan of. Then I realized that it was the Kraft Light Ranch Dressing. So instead of buying another mystery dressing, I decided to make my own ranch using the Hidden Valley mixes and light sour cream. I dumped the packet of seasoning into 12oz of light sour cream and had an amazing dressing that was almost guilt free! When purchasing your deli meat at the counter for this salad, ask them to cut the meat a bit thicker so the strips of meat are substantial.
1.5 Hearts of Romaine Lettuce 2 Tomatoes, Sliced 1/2 a Large English Cucumber, Sliced 1/2 a Green Pepper, Sliced 4 Thick Slices of Your Favorite Ham, cut into strips 4 Thick Slices of Your Favorite Turkey, cut into strips 2 Slices Swiss or Havarti 2 Hard Boiled Eggs Cut into Quarters
*I tend to cook about a dozen eggs in the beginning of the week so that I have them for salads. There is one fool proof way to do it: Place eggs in a pot and completely cover with water. Once the eggs come to a boil, turn off the heat and cover with the lid; let stand for 12 minutes EXACTLY. After that, peel and you will have perfectly cooked eggs each time!*
1. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and toss together with your dressing of choice. Garnish with the quartered eggs.
Years ago, I followed my dreams and went to culinary school. I went to culinary school to continue the dream that my mother and I always shared: to open up a deli or cafe somewhere and call it our own. Whether that cafe will ever open is still up in the air...but my cooking and my love for food I owe to my mother...and in a way this blog is dedicated to her...I only hope that I can inspire other women with this blog the way my mother inspired me...With her love for food passed onto me, I quickly became a food snob after culinary school. Today, a house, a husband' (and his stomach),and an up and coming business keeps me busy enough without all my gourmet concoctions! But, no matter how busy I am, I still go to my kitchen and cook to retain my sanity. Prehaps this is a way I connect to my mother...but cooking is the only thing that truely soothes my soul. My recent transformation has led me to belive that sometimes you just have to Keep It Simple Stupid...and Cook!
I will not eat oysters. I want my food dead - not sick, not wounded - dead. ~Woody Allen
Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside. ~Mark Twain
Great food is like great sex. The more you have the more you want. ~Gael Greene
Tell me what you eat, I'll tell you who you are. ~Anthelme Brillat-Savarin
And, of course, the funniest food of all, kumquats. ~George Carlin
Avoid fruit and nuts. You are what you eat. ~Jim Davis
The trouble with eating Italian food is that five or six days later you're hungry again. ~George Miller
Cooking is like love. It should be entered into with abandon or not at all. ~Harriet van Horne
Life expectancy would grow by leaps and bounds if green vegetables smelled as good as bacon. ~Doug Larson
I didn't fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian. ~Anonymous
But those aren't the flavors. That'd make too much sense. Apple and pear, according to Dr. Phil, are body types the bars are made for. Hey, I've got some advice. If you look like an apple or a pear, eat an apple or a pear! [On Dr. Phil's energy bars. ~Lewis Black