Thursday, May 25, 2017

Garden Fresh Pasta Salad


Yum

Light and Refreshing Garden Fresh Pasta Salad is so outstanding an emplty bowl is all that will be left! - Slice of Southern

We're ramping up here on Slice of Southern to celebrate Memorial Day!

We've talked about my Refreshing Quinoa, Fennel and Grape Salad as a great side dish, and my Attention Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders as a grilled entree.  Today I'm bringing you another side dish to go with any main dish whether you grill, BBQ, or use the slow cooker!

Light and Refreshing Garden Fresh Pasta Salad is so outstanding an emplty bowl is all that will be left! - Slice of Southern


GARDEN FRESH PASTA SALAD

Growing up my mom always loved a good pasta salad.  She made it often because they go with everything.  I don't remember a cookout or potluck growing up that didn't have a big bowl of pasta salad in attendance!

During the summer we have a habit of making a big pasta salad on the weekend so we can and eat it all week long with everything from sandwiches to grilled chicken. 


Light and Refreshing Garden Fresh Pasta Salad is so outstanding an emplty bowl is all that will be left! - Slice of Southern

They are easy to throw together and this one screams summer.  Fresh vegetables from your local farmer's market or grocery store are the star!  Filled with fresh spinach, broccoli, tomatoes, and bell peppers, this pasta salad is just delishhhh!  And don't forget the basil, garbanzo beans, and mozzarella, they create a balance to this salad that makes it irresistible.


Light and Refreshing Garden Fresh Pasta Salad is so outstanding an emplty bowl is all that will be left! - Slice of Southern

Make sure to make this salad at your next gathering.  Memorial Day calls for reflection, good friends, family, and good food!  Everyone will rave about this and the bowl will be the first one empty!

Enjoy!






Garden Fresh Pasta Salad

serves 6-8

2 cups uncooked rotini pasta
15 oz garbanzo beans, drained
3 cups fresh baby spinach, roughly chopped
2 cups fresh broccoli florets
2 plum tomatoes, diced
1 red pepper, diced
1/4 c mozzarella cheese, cubed
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/3 cup basil & sun-dried tomato salad dressing


Cook pasta according to package directions. During the last 5 minutes of cooking add the broccoli florets and blanch until bright green.   Drain pasta and broccoli and transfer to a large bowl.

Add beans, vegetables, cheese, and basil to pasta. Drizzle with dressing toss to coat. Refrigerate to chill or serve at room temperature.  



Light and Refreshing Garden Fresh Pasta Salad is so outstanding an emplty bowl is all that will be left! - Slice of Southern

Light and Refreshing Garden Fresh Pasta Salad is so outstanding an emplty bowl is all that will be left! - Slice of Southern










    Wednesday, May 24, 2017

    Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders


    Yum

    SPICE UP your Sliders!  Try my Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders this Memorial Day!  Slice of Southern

    Memorial Day is around the corner and it's time to "Spice Up" your Sliders!

    Memorial Day always marks the unofficial start of summer which goes hand in hand with grilling.  Since the weather here has been warm enough to grill for a month or so we've already started making great dishes on the grill, but no matter what we always have a cook-out for Memorial Day.


    SPICE UP your Sliders!  Try my Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders this Memorial Day!  Slice of Southern

    This year we aren't just making any ole' sliders.  Nope!  We are going to "Spice Up" our palate and our lives with a little add-in to the burgers.  We decided to add sautéed jalapenos and mushrooms to the mix to create one irresistibly juicy, and flavorful slider!


    SPICE UP your Sliders!  Try my Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders this Memorial Day!  Slice of Southern


    ATTENTION-GRABBING JALAPENO MUSHROOM SLIDERS

    This is my riff on my favorite burger, the mushroom Swiss burger with a spicy twist.  The mushrooms and jalapeno are sautéed and added to the meat mixture instead of being used as toppings.  This is a lot easier to control than having them sit on top of a small slider.  This created a wonderfully juicy and tasty burger!


    SPICE UP your Sliders!  Try my Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders this Memorial Day!  Slice of Southern

    They take a little prep work but the end result is an Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Slider!  They are only mildly spicy but you can adjust that to your liking by adding more or less diced jalapeno.  Additionally, the cheese is optional.  We added cheese to about half of our burgers and left the other plain.  Serve with your favorite fixings, and possibly a spicy burger sauce and you are set for a sizzling main dish!

    Enjoy!




    Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders

    makes 12

    1 lb ground sirloin (10%)
    8 oz sliced baby bella mushrooms
    1 Tbls olive oil
    Kosher salt
    2 jalapenos, finely diced
    salt and pepper
    Swiss cheese (optional)
    12 slider buns, split and buttered


    Preheat a gas or charcoal grill, or they may be grilled indoors on a grill pan.

    In a large skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil and mushrooms.  Cook mushrooms 3-4 minutes until they start to get tender.  Sprinkle salt over the mushrooms and they will release their moisture and start to turn a golden brown.  Cook an additional 3-4 minutes until golden and remove from the skillet to a cutting board. 

    Add the diced jalapeno to the skillet and cook about 3 minutes until softened.  Watch them while cooking as they can burn easily and may pop up on the pan while cooking.

    Cut the mushrooms into small pieces and add to a large bowl.  Add the sautéed jalapeno to the bowl as well.  Sprinkle the ground sirloin over the veggies in the bowl. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to season.  Mix until well combined but don't overwork the meat.  Form 12 equal patties and place them on a platter.

    Grill patties 3-4 minutes per side for well done patties.  If you are adding cheese, add it to the patties once your flip the burger to the second side.  Add buttered buns to the grill to toast.  Remove patties and buns to a platter.  Serve with condiments and fixings of your choice.




    SPICE UP your Sliders!  Try my Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders this Memorial Day!  Slice of Southern


    SPICE UP your Sliders!  Try my Attention-Grabbing Jalapeno Mushroom Sliders this Memorial Day!  Slice of Southern












    Monday, May 22, 2017

    Refreshing Quinoa, Fennel, and Grape Salad


    Yum

    This is the PERFECT summer salad, with hearty grains, a bit of sweet and a bit of bite. What an excellent compliment to any grilled dish you may be serving up for Memorial Day. - Slice of Southern

    Memorial Day always marked the beginning of summer growing up.  The pool parties we abundant on our block and all of us kids spent time swimming while all the parents would be grilling up great food!

    Instead of the hot dogs and burgers (which I still love) I've grown to include salads as a typical summer item.   My idea of salads now run the gamut from pasta, green salads, and grain salads such as the one I'm showing you today.


    This is the PERFECT summer salad, with hearty grains, a bit of sweet and a bit of bite. What an excellent compliment to any grilled dish you may be serving up for Memorial Day. - Slice of Southern


    REFRESHING QUINOA, FENNEL, AND GRAPE SALAD

    This is the PERFECT summer salad, with hearty grains, a bit of sweet from the grapes and a bit of bite from the fennel.  All drizzled with a fresh lemon vinaigrette.  What an excellent compliment to any grilled dish you may be serving up for Memorial Day.

    You have to trust this combination.  It's absolutely fabulous!  The quinoa lends a bit of crunch, and helps fill you with hearty grains.  Now I bet a lot of you are going "OH NO! Fennel!" but don't count it out.  I don't even like licorice and although fennel has a slight hint of this flavor, eaten raw it is mildly sweet and bitey at the same time, and tastes wonderful!  The grapes really hold their shape in the salad and give it a wonderful sweetness.  What a great thing to use a fruit in place of a vegetable to jazz up a salad!


    This is the PERFECT summer salad, with hearty grains, a bit of sweet and a bit of bite. What an excellent compliment to any grilled dish you may be serving up for Memorial Day. - Slice of Southern

    So make something that is light and refreshing, easy to make and taste wonderful with any main entrée!

    Happy Memorial Day!



    This is the PERFECT summer salad, with hearty grains, a bit of sweet and a bit of bite. What an excellent compliment to any grilled dish you may be serving up for Memorial Day. - Slice of Southern
    Refreshing Quinoa, Fennel, and Grape Salad & Garden Ribbon Salad

    Oh, and take a look at this Garden Ribbon Salad...isn't it gorgeous?!?!  Recipe coming soon!







    Refreshing Quinoa, Fennel, and Grape Salad


    Salad:
    1/2 cup cooked quinoa, cooled ( I used tri-colored quinoa)
    1 cup red grapes, halved
    1/4 cup thinly shaved fennel

    Dressing:
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 tablespoons lemon juice
    1 teaspoon lemon zest
    2 teaspoons honey or agave
    Salt and pepper

    Combine ingredients for the salad in a bowl and toss to combine. In a small jar, add oil, juice, zest, honey, salt and pepper. Shake until well combined.  Pour over the ingredients for the salad and toss. Serve chilled or at room temperature.


    This is the PERFECT summer salad, with hearty grains, a bit of sweet and a bit of bite. What an excellent compliment to any grilled dish you may be serving up for Memorial Day. - Slice of Southern

    This is the PERFECT summer salad, with hearty grains, a bit of sweet and a bit of bite. What an excellent compliment to any grilled dish you may be serving up for Memorial Day. - Slice of Southern


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