Panzanella

Panzanella

tuscan panzanella

Panzanella

Panzanella is traditionally a Tuscan dish made with stale bread and I like to use day old french loaf. It’s a really fresh and healthy salad type dish that is a meal in itself and perfect for summer lunches.

Open a bottle of great wine, a Rose is perfect with Panzanella, put a blanket or a small table and chairs out under the trees  and have a real Italian afternoon.

What you need for 4

1 French loaf cut into rough cubes
50ml Olive oil

30ml red wine vinegar

4 cups chopped cocktail tomatoes

1/2 cup thinly sliced onion

1 cup sliced seeded cucumber

Fist full of basil leaves torn up

Salt and pepper

The process

Slice the onions as finely as you can and sprinkle with a little salt.

In a large salad bowl add the bread cubes, onions and tomatoes, giving the tomatoes a squeeze over the bowl to release some of the juices and mix to combine well.

Pour over the olive oil, red wine vinegar and add the torn basil leaves and mix it well to combine all of the flavors. If you feel you need a little more olive oil add more now.

Add a good grind of black pepper and season with salt. Mix it again and you are ready to serve.

You will love the freshness of this dish and with a glass of red wine you could imagine yourself under a tree in a Tuscan village.

Add some cheese cubes for a more substantial meal.

If you like real home made Italian food you want to try some of the Italian food recipes

Oriental chicken salad

Oriental chicken salad

chicnese chicken salad

I’ve had so many requests for salads lately (all from JHB I might tell you) so I thought I’d try this one. It was really tasty and took about 15 minutes start to finish. This is enough for 2 so double it if you need to.

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Salad adventure

Salad adventure

apple salad

Winter getting you down? Perk up your day with this colorful, healthy and delicious fruit and veg salad mix. Here are 2 fantastic dressings for a healthy and filling lunchtime meal salad with a difference.

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Three bean salad

Three bean salad

three bean salad

This is a perfect lunch that you can have if you feel you have been picking up a few pounds this winter. It’s nutritious and filling and is a weight watcher recommended recipe.
What you need

Ingredients
1 tin black beans
1 tin kidney beans
1 tin garbanzo beans
Pinch of black pepper
1 small onion chopped
2 teaspoons mustard
A couple of fresh thyme leaves
75ml fresh orange juice
Squeeze of lemon
Splash of water

The process

Pour the canned beans into a sieve or colander and rinse under cold water.

Place everything else in a bowl and whisk them together to form a nice dressing. taste and add pepper if needed.

Add the beans to the dressing and toss them around to coat the beans nicely.

That’s it, you are done.

We added a few chickpeas and some blanched green beans and corn kernels for a little variety and color.

This recipe also serves as a really nice side salad to a curry, just add a tablespoon of plain yogurt to the dressing.

Warm chicken salad

Warm chicken salad

chicken salad recipe

Warm chicken salad

Chicken salad recipes are so varied and this chicken salad recipe is fantastic just as it is or you could make it your own by adding a few of your favorite ingredients. This is an old recipe which is just so simple and healthy, it will become your meal to make when you need to impress in a hurry. You can add a few strawberries or orange pieces, just go to town and make to your own taste.

What you need

4 chicken breasts
Olive oil
Sunflower seeds, roasted
Green beans
lettuce
Ripe avocado sliced
Blue cheese
Sour cream
milk

The process

Cut the chicken into slices and then in half again. Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper and stir fry until done. Set them aside.

Blanche the green beans in boiling water for about 3 minute, remove and drain them.

Arrange the lettuce on the plate and top with avocado, green beans and chicken pieces.

Now take the blue cheese, crumble it into a bowl, add some sour cream and a little milk, season and mix it together well.

Drizzle the dressing over the salad, sprinkle with sunflower seeds and thats it.

make it your own by substituting or adding whatever takes your fancy.

We have used cajun spices and added mango before and it was fantastic. Go for it you get the idea.

Try the summer chicken salad with rice for a difference.

Warm roast potato salad

Warm roast potato salad

roast potatoes

For a nice change with fish, try this warm potato dish. Its creamy and delicious and adds a little variety.

What you need

1kg potatoes cut into wedges
3 tablespoons olive oil
6-8 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
salt to taste
Squeeze of lemon
3 tablespoons mayonnaise

The process

Place the potato wedges and whole unpeeled garlic cloves in a roasting pan, drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and place in a hot oven of 220 celsius.

Roast for about 45 minutes, giving them a toss after 20 minutes.

Remove from the oven and in a separate bowl add the mayonnaise and squeeze the roast garlic into the mayonnaise, add a squeeze of lemon and combine well.

Add the potatoes to the bowl while still hot and mix to coat each wedge.

Served on the side with a white fish, its just amazing.

Real Caesar dressing

Real Caesar dressing

Caesar salad dressing

Caesar salad dressing

Caesar salads are amongst the most popular salads but seldom made at home because as far as salads go this salad dressing recipe is fairly complicated and requires quite a few ingredients, but it is so worth it.

What you need

1 egg

8 tinned anchovy fillets

2 large cloves garlic grated/crushed

40ml lemon juice

50g finely grated parmesan

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

3/4 cup olive oil

1/3 cup cream

The process

Bring a small pot of water to the boil, remove from heat and place the egg in the boiling water and cover. Leave it for about 3 minutes and then remove the inside and place in a bowl.

Add all the rest of the ingrediens except the oilve oil and cream, mix/whisk well together.

Gradually add the oil in a thin stream, whisking constantly. Once you have used all of the oil add the cream and give it a really good whisk.

Thats it, you now have the real thing.

Serve with crisp salad leaves and how I like to make it a full meal is by adding some cooked chicken. Serve with warm crisp french loaf or croutons over the top.