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Archive for the ‘Greens’ Category


Market Lady Susan Pittman shares this tasty seasonal salad.

Lettuce Medley Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette

Prep Time: 10 min

Level:  Easy                 Serves: 4 servings

medely salad final

 1 pint strawberries, sliced *

4 cups variety of lettuces *

1/2 cup raisins

1/4 cup pine nuts

2 tablespoons kalamata olives, chopped in half

1 red onion, diced *

Fresh mint leaves, torn *

Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing, recipe follows

Feta cheese, crumbled

 In a large bowl, add the strawberries, lettuce, raisins, olives, pine nuts, red onions and mint. Top with Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing and feta cheese.

Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing:

 1/2 cup raspberries

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon sugar, optional

 Add the raspberries, oil, vinegar and sugar if using into a blender and blend until smooth.

 *available at your local farmers market now (6-5-13).  Raspberries should be in season toward the end of June.

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Market Lady Susan Pittman

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A visit to a market will allow you to reap the best of locally grown products.  This mild winter and warmer than average spring has jump started everything it seems.  But, I’m not complaining.

The past three weeks I’ve been enjoying the sweetness of market strawberries.  Strawberries to me signals the start of the summer season!

If you haven’t had the chance to get out to your local market, now is the time.  Produce is rolling in at markets, so you better get your shopping on soon.

Here’s a fresh strawberry dressing that has been a staple on our dinner table for weeks now.  Maybe it’s my pregnancy cravings or maybe it’s the fresh taste, but I simple can’t get enough!

Market Salad with Fresh Strawberry Sauce
1 bunch of salad mix from market
2 grilled chicken breasts, sliced thin
1/2 cup toasted almonds or walnuts

Fresh Strawberry Sauce
7 large strawberries, rinsed, hulled and sliced
1 tablespoon of a high-quality balsamic vinegar
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoon canola oil

Clean and rinse the salad mix to large bowl.  Add chicken slices and nuts.

For sauce: Place strawberries, vinegar, pepper, sugar and salt in a blender or food processor; process until pureed, stopping once or twice to scrape down the sides. Add oil and process until smooth.  Drizzle over the top of the salad and enjoy!

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Kale Chips


Kale Chips Kale is one of those vegetables that I’m experimenting with this winter.  I find that like many greens, consumers are a little unsure oh how to make this leafy green tasty enough to serve for their families.  According to WEB MD, Kale’s risk-lowering benefits for cancer have recently been extended to at least five different types of cancer. These types include cancer of the bladder, breast, colon, ovary, and prostate. Isothiocyanates (ITCs) made from glucosinolates in kale play a primary role in achieving these risk-lowering benefits. That’s a lot of goodness packed inside those green leaves.

You can bake, saute or even roast Kale.  Here is a recipe that a friend passed along to me that has become a favorite with my 2-year-old son.  Kale Chips…provides that crunch of a chip and all the nutrition needed for a growing tot.

KALE CHIPS

1 bunch kale
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 T. Parmesan Cheese

Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line a non insulated cookie sheet with parchment paper. With a knife or kitchen shears carefully remove the leaves from the thick stems and tear into bite size pieces. Wash and thoroughly dry kale with a salad spinner. Drizzle kale with olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning salt.

Bake until the edges brown but are not burnt, 10 to 15 minutes.  Half way through sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese and return to over to finish baking.

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Dijon Salad Dressing

Make Your Own Dressing

Salads are one of my favorite meals.  There are so many ways to jazz up a salad, either with a dressing, fruit or adding a protein.

One of the top New Year’s Resolutions is always to loose weight, so I thought that this recipe would fit nicely into many folk’s meal plans for 2012.  Maybe you are on a full-fledged diet and exercise routine or just eating a few more salads each week, this dressing is a perfect addition to your recipe box.

The recipe comes from my friend Marissa, who brought a delicious Spinach Salad to a dinner party recently.  She had been experimenting with dressings and had came up with a perfect combo.  (I love having friends that cook!)

Try adding this dressing to a spinach salad and add chopped eggs, mushrooms, blue cheese and some crumbled bacon.

Special Dressing
3 T. chopped onion
2/3 cup white sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 cup olive oil
1/3 cup cider vinegar
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 tsp. celery seed
1 T. prepared Dijon-Style Mustard

Prepare the dressing in a blender by combining the onion, sugar, salt, oil, vinegar, pepper, celery seed and Dijon mustard. Blend until smooth.

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Start with a platter full of local veggies

Over the weekend I pulled out a recipe that I couldn’t wait to try – Pasta Primavera!  I got online to Food Network and printed this great summer time recipe from Giada De Laurentiis. 

This recipe is packed pull of veggies found at your local market.  I added the juice of one lemon for an extra punch.  For leftovers we added some grilled chicken to the mix for a complete meal.  Enjoy!

Pasta Primavera

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

On a large heavy baking sheet, toss all of the vegetables with the oil, salt, pepper, and dried herbs to coat. Transfer half of the vegetable mixture to another heavy large baking sheet and arrange evenly over the baking sheets. Bake until the carrots are tender and the vegetables begin to brown, stirring after the first 10 minutes, about 20 minutes total.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente, tender but still firm to the bite, about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.

Toss the pasta with the vegetable mixtures in a large bowl to combine. Toss with the cherry tomatoes and enough reserved cooking liquid to moisten. Season the pasta with salt and pepper, to taste. Sprinkle with the Parmesan and serve immediately.

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I made a light and tasty pasta salad at the Aurora Farmers Market that includes fresh products that can be found at a local farmers market.  Watch our cooking video from the market visit and try making this easy Garden Salad for your family this week.

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Serving Up Customers at the recnet Greater Springfield Market Visit

The Market Lady, Lane McConnell, will visit the West Plains Farmers Market in West Plains, Mo., Saturday, July 23 to help celebrate the “Salsa Wars” market event.  The Market Lady and video crew will begin at 8:00 a.m., with two cooking demonstration incorporating products from the market and will be interviewing producers and consumers for various other segments.

“I strive to inform folks on the ease of preparing homemade meals for their families through shopping at the market,” said McConnell.  “Consumers can log on to our website or Facebook page to view short videos of interviews with the farmers that grow our food, topics such as food safety, organic, naturally grown and learn how to cook simple meals.”

The purpose of The Market Lady Project is to educate consumers about eating healthy, locally produced food found at their farmers market.

“The market will offer consumers a great event on Saturday,” said Market Manager Laura Esterle.  “We hope that customers will come out to the market and bring their families to watch The Market Lady cooking demonstrations and take part in the annual Salsa Wars.”

Below is one recipe that The Market Lady will be preparing at the market. Be sure and come out to the West Plains Farmers Market on July 23 to meet the Market Lady and video producer Kelsie Young at 711 Washington Ave.

Zucchini and Squash Penne with Ricotta
1 cup ricotta cheese, room temperature
2 lbs. zucchini and squash
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 T. lemon juice
3 T. basil or marjoram
Sea salt and peppercorns, to taste
¼ tsp. cracked peppercorns
I lb. cooked penne pasta
Grated parmesan cheese

Prepare penne al dente.  Sit out ricotta cheese to bring to room temperature.  Slice zucchini and squash diagonal into stripes about ½ inch thick.

Heat oil in a wide skillet.  Add zucchini, squash and red pepper flakes and sauté for about 5 minutes.  Add garlic, basil and lemon juice and remove from heat.  Season with sea salt and peppercorns.  Add cooked pasta to zucchini and toss.  Season with salt and add ricotta cheese and toss together.  Plate and grate parmesan cheese over the dish.

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