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Easy Recipe

Quick And Easy: Watermelon, Feta, and Mint Salad Recipe

Watermelon, Feta, and Mint Salad Recipe

Since the first time I was introduced to it, in 2005, watermelon and feta salad with mint has become a staple summertime dish at my place (and, no doubt, at many of your places as well), and I’ve learned a few things when adapting that recipe for home use. One: You can get rid of pretty much all of the extraneous ingredients. Two: The quality of the watermelon and, more critically, the feta is of utmost importance. And three: A little zest goes a long way.

  • Serves 4 to 6
  • 5 minutes

  • 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds seedless watermelon (about 1 small or 1/4 large), rind removed, cut into 1-inch chunks (about 2 pounds/1kg chunks after rind is discarded)
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) juice from 1 lemon, plus 4 (2-inch) strips zest, removed with a sharp vegetable peeler
  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1/4 cup (10g) roughly chopped fresh mint leaves
  • Up to 4 ounces (1 quart) arugula leaves (optional; see note)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ounces (110g) feta cheese (see note)

Directions

  1. 1.

    Place watermelon chunks in a large bowl. Finely chop lemon zest. Add lemon juice and half of zest to bowl with watermelon. Add oil, mint, and arugula (if using) and toss until watermelon is evenly dressed. Season lightly to taste with salt and pepper. (The cheese will add saltiness, so go light on the salt at this stage.)

  2. 2.

    Transfer salad to a wide, shallow bowl or a large plate and spread out evenly. Crumble feta over the top. Sprinkle with remaining lemon zest. Drizzle with more olive oil and a few grinds of black pepper. Serve immediately.

Categories
Easy Recipe

Quick And Easy: The Best Caesar Salad Recipe

The Best Caesar Salad Recipe

There’s a reason that in the 90 years since its invention, the Caesar salad has become the default second salad option at every single major restaurant chain in the country. The combination of savory, creamy, tangy, and crunchy ingredients is tasty stuff. This classic Caesar salad with garlic-Parmesan croutons and a creamy dressing might just be the best version yet.

The crowd-pleasing salad of crisp romaine leaves, crunchy croutons, and a little or a lot of anchovy, as you like.

  • Serves 4
  • 20 minutes

  • 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup (105ml) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 3 cups hearty bread, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 2 ounces finely grated Parmesan cheese (about 1 cup), divided
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) juice from 1 lemon
  • 2 to 6 anchovies (see note)
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) Worcestershire sauce (see note)
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) canola oil
  • 2 heads romaine lettuce, inner leaves only, washed and carefully dried, large leaves torn into smaller pieces, smaller leaves left intact

Directions

  1. 1.

    Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). In a small bowl, combine 3 tablespoons (45ml) olive oil with minced garlic and whisk for 30 seconds. Transfer to a fine-mesh strainer set over a large bowl and press with the back of a spoon to extract as much oil as possible, leaving garlic behind. Reserve pressed garlic separately. Add bread cubes to garlic oil and toss to coat. Add 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, season to taste with salt and pepper, and toss again. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until croutons are pale golden brown and crisp, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and toss with 2 more tablespoons Parmesan. Allow to cool.

  2. 2.

    While croutons bake, make the dressing. Combine egg yolk, lemon juice, anchovies, Worcestershire sauce, pressed garlic, and 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese in the bottom of a cup that just fits the head of an immersion blender or in the bottom of a food processor. With blender or processor running, slowly drizzle in canola oil until a smooth emulsion forms. Transfer mixture to a medium bowl. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in remaining 1/4 cup (60ml) extra-virgin olive oil. Season to taste generously with salt and pepper.

  3. 3.

    To serve, toss lettuce with a few tablespoons of dressing, adding more if desired. Once lettuce is coated, add half of remaining cheese and three-quarters of croutons and toss again. Transfer to a salad bowl and sprinkle with remaining cheese and croutons. Serve.

Categories
Easy Recipe

Classic Panzanella Salad (Tuscan-Style Tomato-and-Bread Salad) Recipe

Classic Panzanella Salad (Tuscan-Style Tomato-and-Bread Salad) Recipe

This classic Italian bread-and-tomato salad manages to be fresh and summery, but still hearty enough to eat as a light supper or lunch.

Use dried (not stale) bread and salted tomatoes to make the best version of this classic Italian bread salad.

  • Serves 6
  • 30 minutes

  • 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 pounds (1.1kg) mixed tomatoes, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 2 teaspoons (8g) kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 3/4 pound (340g) ciabatta or rustic sourdough bread, cut into 1 1/2–inch cubes (about 6 cups bread cubes)
  • 10 tablespoons (150ml) extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 small shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, minced (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup (1/2 ounce) packed basil leaves, roughly chopped

Directions

  1. 1.

    Place tomatoes in a colander set over a bowl and season with 2 teaspoons (8g) kosher salt. Toss to coat. Set aside at room temperature to drain, tossing occasionally, while you toast the bread. Drain for a minimum of 15 minutes.

  2. 2.

    Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) and adjust rack to center position. In a large bowl, toss bread cubes with 2 tablespoons (30ml) olive oil. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until crisp and firm but not browned, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.

  3. 3.

    Remove colander with tomatoes from bowl with tomato juice. Place colander with tomatoes in the sink. Add shallot, garlic, mustard, and vinegar to the bowl with tomato juice. Whisking constantly, drizzle in the remaining 1/2 cup (120ml) olive oil. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper.

  4. 4.

    Combine toasted bread, tomatoes, and dressing in a large bowl. Add basil leaves. Toss everything to coat and season with salt and pepper. Let rest for 30 minutes before serving, tossing occasionally until dressing is completely absorbed by bread.

Categories
Easy Recipe

Mexican Street Corn Salad (Esquites) Recipe

Mexican Street Corn Salad (Esquites) Recipe

Smoky, sweet, spicy, and tangy, esquites are the off-the-cob version of elotes—grilled Mexican street corn slathered with creamy, cheesy, lime-scented, chili-flecked sauce. In this version, we char the corn on the stovetop, though a trip to the grill wouldn’t hurt.

All the delights of Mexican street corn (elotes) in salad form, and you don’t even have to fire up the grill to make it.

  • Serves 4
  • 15 minutes

  • 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) vegetable oil
  • 4 ears fresh corn, shucked, kernels removed (about 3 cups fresh corn kernels)
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) mayonnaise
  • 2 ounces (60g) feta or Cotija cheese, finely crumbled
  • 1/2 cup finely sliced scallions, green parts only
  • 1/2 cup (1/2 ounce) fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and stemmed, finely chopped
  • 1 to 2 medium cloves garlic, pressed or minced on a Microplane grater (about 1 to 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) fresh juice from 1 lime
  • Chili powder or hot chili flakes, to taste

Directions

  1. 1.

    Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok over high heat until shimmering. Add corn kernels, season to taste with salt, toss once or twice, and cook without moving until charred on one side, about 2 minutes. Toss corn, stir, and repeat until charred on second side, about 2 minutes longer. Continue tossing and charring until corn is well charred all over, about 10 minutes total. Transfer to a large bowl.

  2. 2.

    Add mayonnaise, cheese, scallions, cilantro, jalapeño, garlic, lime juice, and chili powder and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and more chili powder to taste. Serve immediately.

Categories
Easy Recipe

White Bean and Tuna Salad Recipe

White Bean and Tuna Salad Recipe

This classic Italian salad marries cooked white beans and oil-packed tuna for a protein-packed, pantry-friendly, light meal that’s perfect for warm weather. With a lot of people stocked up on dried beans these days, we’ve been working on a number of recipes to put a batch o’ beans to good use. With spring finally here, and summer just around the corner, we’re moving away from heartier stews, and leaning into bean dishes like this one, which requires little to no additional cooking, and can be served at room temperature.

The perfect protein-packed light meal for when you don’t want to do any cooking.

  • Serves 4
  • 5 minutes

  • 25 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 red onion (about 4 ounces; 116g), cut into 1/8-inch thick slices
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) Champagne, white wine, or red wine vinegar plus extra for drizzling
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 cups (1 pound 6 ounces; 625g) cooked dry white beans, drained, or two (15-ounce; 425g) cans low-sodium white beans, drained and rinsed (see note)
  • 5.6 ounces (160g) olive oil-packed tuna (from two 3.88-ounce (110g) cans), preferably ventresca (tuna belly; see note), drained and gently flaked into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 medium garlic clove (5g), minced or finely grated
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) bean cooking liquid, from a pot of beans cooked from dry (see note if using canned beans)
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) extra-virgin olive oil plus extra for drizzling
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 ounce; 16g) finely chopped fresh parsley leaves and tender stems

Directions

  1. 1.

    In a small bowl, combine red onion and enough ice water to cover. Using clean hands, gently scrunch and squeeze the onion slices, taking care not to crush or break them. Let onion slices sit in ice water for 15 minutes, then drain and discard ice water, and return red onion to now-empty bowl. Add vinegar and 1/4 teaspoon (1g) salt and toss and gently massage onions to evenly coat with vinegar and salt. Set aside for 5 minutes to allow onion slices to marinate.

  2. 2.

    Meanwhile, combine beans and tuna in a large bowl. Once onions have marinated for 5 minutes, squeeze onion slices to release moisture into the bowl that they marinated in, then transfer onion slices to large bowl with beans and tuna; set large bowl aside.

  3. 3.

    There should be at least 1 tablespoon (15ml) of vinegar-onion juice liquid left in the small bowl. Add garlic, bean cooking liquid (or, if using canned beans, 2 teaspoons (10ml) water plus 1 teaspoon (5ml) Dijon mustard), and 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, and whisk to combine. Whisking constantly, slowly drizzle in olive oil. Stir in parsley and season to taste with salt.

  4. 4.

    Transfer dressing to large bowl with bean-tuna mixture, using a rubber spatula to scrape all of the dressing into the large bowl. Using a large spoon, gently toss salad to evenly coat with dressing, taking care not to crush tuna or beans in the process. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Divide salad between individual serving plates or one large serving platter, drizzle lightly with olive oil and a splash of vinegar, and serve.

Categories
Easy Recipe

Creamy Bean Dip With Roasted Tomato Puttanesca Salad Recipe

Creamy Bean Dip With Roasted Tomato Puttanesca Salad Recipe

Even if we aren’t hosting in-person dinner or cocktail parties these days, we can still make tasty, pantry-friendly dips and appetizers for snacking on during quarantine. If you’re self-isolating with a lot of dried legumes in your pantry, then this super-smooth white bean dip is another great way to put a pot of beans to good use.

This creamy white bean spread with a bright puttanesca-inspired topping is the perfect snacking appetizer, no sharing required.

  • Serves 4 to 6 as an appetizer
  • 10 minutes

  • 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • For the Tomato Salad:
  • 1 pound cherry tomatoes (about 1 pint; 450g)
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 ounce flat-leaf parsley leaves (1 loosely packed cup; 15g), roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup (50g) pitted black olives, such as Niçoise, Taggiasca, or Kalamata
  • 1 oil-packed anchovy fillet (5g), minced (optional)
  • Pinch red pepper flakes, gochugaru (Korean chili powder), or Aleppo pepper
  • For the White Bean Dip:
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon (20ml) fresh lemon juice from 1 lemon
  • 1 medium garlic clove (5g)
  • 2 cups (425g) cooked dry white beans, drained, or one (15-ounce; 425g) can low-sodium white beans, drained and rinsed (see note)
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) bean cooking liquid, from a pot of beans cooked from dry, plus more as needed (see note if using canned beans)
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  • For Serving: 1 loaf rustic sourdough bread, thickly sliced, drizzled with olive oil, and broiled until heavily toasted or warmed pita bread

Directions

  1. 1.

    For the Tomato Salad: Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 425°F (220°C). In a 10-inch stainless steel skillet or on a small rimmed eighth- or quarter-sheet pan, combine tomatoes with olive oil, season lightly with salt and pepper, and shake pan to evenly coat tomatoes with oil. Transfer to oven and roast until tomato skins just begin to shrivel and split, 20 to 25 minutes. Set aside to cool for at least 10 minutes.

  2. 2.

    Transfer tomatoes and all of the juices that accumulated in the baking sheet (or skillet) to a medium bowl with parsley, olives, anchovy, and red pepper flakes. Using a spoon, gently stir to combine, season to taste with salt and pepper, and set aside (salad can be covered and left out at room temperature for up to 2 hours, or refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days).

  3. 3.

    For the White Bean Dip: While the tomatoes are roasting, place lemon juice in a small bowl. Using a Microplane, finely grate the garlic and immediately add to the lemon juice (alternatively, you can use a garlic press or finely mince the garlic with a knife). Set aside for 10 minutes.

  4. 4.

    In the bowl of a food processor, combine beans, bean cooking liquid, and garlic-lemon juice mixture. Process beans, scraping down sides of food processor bowl as needed with a rubber spatula, into a mostly smooth paste, about 1 minute. With food processor running, slowly stream in olive oil, and continue to process until mixture is very smooth, about 3 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper to taste and adjust consistency with additional bean cooking liquid if necessary. Bean dip can be served right away or refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

  5. 5.

    For Serving: Transfer bean dip to large, wide serving bowl and use back of large spoon to spread bean dip up sides of bowl, leaving well at center. Spoon tomato salad in center of well. Serve with bread.