Italian Sausage Caprese Salad

Italian Sausage Caprese Salad

Italian Sausage Caprese Salad

I can say with all confidence that Spring is here, and Summer is on the way. Having said that, salads come to mind………..Italian Sausage Caprese Salad!

“Caprese” refers to something that comes from or is in the style of Capri, an Italian island off the coast near Naples………so it really means Italian.

It really is a delicious salad, fresh baby greens, with mozzarella cheese……….I love that they have the little tiny mozzarella balls called ‘Bocconcini’, they are so easy to use, just drain they, pat them dry and they are ready for the salad. I love fresh mozzarella, but to be truthful, it’s kind of a pain to slice……..and I have a cheese knife! But, lucky we live in the kind of world where everything has an easier way.

Tomatoes and basil, along with a Balsamic Dressing make for a lovely salad. Enter the Italian Sausage……….Italian Chicken Sausage to be exact. Johnsonville makes some great chicken sausages. They are precooked so you just have to grill and warm them up. They were perfect for a salad that usually does not have meat. Adding the meat makes it a hearty meal.

Grilled Sausage Caprese Salad

Now, lets talk about how easy this is to prepare. Pre-washed greens, mozzarella balls (I already talked of their ease), grape tomatoes, a quick cut in half, basil, just a little chop or tear, and a quick grill of the sausage. A balsamic dressing that comes together in a snap, especially using a mini food processor, all the ingredients, a quick whirl, and you are ready.

This would make a great weeknight salad, since it comes together so quickly, or a nice light meal after a day of……….gardening, or what ever your weekend pleasures are.

So, enjoy the Italian Sausage Caprese Salad………..Buon Appetito!

Grilled Sausage Caprese Salad Collage

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Italian Sausage Caprese Salad

Italian Sausage Caprese Salad

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Yield: 2

Ingredients

  • Ingredients
  • 3 cups washed baby greens, any kind
  • 1/2 pound Baby mozzarella balls (Bocconcini), drained
  • 1/2 pound grape tomatoes, halved
  • 6 large basil leaves, chopped
  • 2 grilled Italian Chicken Sausage
  • Cracked black pepper, to taste
  • Dressing
  • 2 clove garlic, grated
  • 1tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 7 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Grill Italian Sausage until warmed through and you have nice grill marks.
  2. Allow to cool slightly and slice on the diagonal. Set aside.
  3. Measure all ingredients for dressing into small jar with tight fitting lid. Shake and drizzle over salad. Serve immediately.
  4. Divide the greens,mozzarella balls, tomatoes between two plates. (you can also place everything on a nice platter). Place the grilled, sliced sausage on top and sprinkle with basil. Serve with dressing and cracked black pepper.

Notes

You can easily double this recipe.

 

Tuna Salad Nicoise

Tuna Salad Nicoise

Tuna Salad Nicoise

What is Nicoise you say…………well, Nicoise is the French word for “in the style of Nice.” So, any dish that is labeled Nicoise would be in the cooking style of Nice, France, and we know my affliction with all things French.

Usually these recipes have black olives, tomatoes, anchovies, and garlic. Typically in America, Salade Nicoise includes the olives, tomatoes, anchovies and a vinaigrette along with beans, tuna and hard boiled eggs.

Well I took creative liberty with this one, no black olives, no anchovies…….yes tomatoes, yes tuna, yes hard boiled eggs, and yes asparagus………oh wait, thats not original to the recipe, but it sure is “in the style of Nice”.

We finally were able to eat our own homegrown asparagus this year. So, since I wanted to make a salad, I thought why not add it in……….it was a great choice.

Tuna Salad Nicoise 1

The salad itself reminds me of a meat and potatoes meal. You have meat, potatoes and vegetables……..whats not to like? Top it with a Lemon Mustard Vinaigrette and you have a feast fit for a King…….or Queen.

Tuna Salad Nicoise Collage

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Tuna Salad Nicoise

Tuna Salad Nicoise

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Yield: 2

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound tuna fillet
  • Finely chopped fresh chives, tarragon and parsley to equal 1 tablespoon total
  • 2 teaspoons coconut oil ( or olive oil will work)
  • 2 small (about 3 ounces each) red potatoes
  • 8 stalk asparagus, trimmed
  • 1/2 of a 5 ounce container of mixed greens
  • 8 grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, cut into quarters
  • 1 green onion, finely sliced
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • Lemon Mustard Vinaigrette

Instructions

  1. Mix herbs with coconut oil and rub on tuna, season with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Heat a grill pan or skillet over medium high heat, grill tuna turning once until the internal temperature is about 125*. You can adjust cooking to your desired doneness. Let rest then cut into slices.
  3. Cook potatoes in microwave until just tender, about 3-4 minutes. Place in an ice bath to stop the cooking process, then slice into quarters.
  4. Cook asparagus until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Place in an ice bath to stop the cooking process.
  5. Arrange lettuce leaves on each of 2 plates. Top each with sliced tun, then arrange half of potatoes, asparagus, tomatoes and hard-boiled eggs decoratively around tuna. Sprinkle half of green onions and capers over each salmon fillet. Serve, passing vinaigrette separately.

 

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Tuna Salad Nicoise

Lemon Mustard Vinaigrette

  • Author: Marty Boyd

Ingredients

  • Juice of one fresh lemon
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed
  • Finely chopped fresh chives, tarragon and parsley to equal 1 tablespoon total
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Instructions

  1. Combine first 4 ingredients in small bowl or small food processor. Gradually whisk/blend in oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad

Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad

Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad

I think Spring may finally be here to stay……….yeah!!!! So what better to fix than a salad loaded with spring veggies and grilled chicken……..Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad.

I have had many requests for salads and healthy fare. I have made several small attempts at healthier recipes, but when the weather is crappy I’m more inclined to comfort foods.

With the arrival of Spring and all things anew, this Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad is just the ticket. Mixed green topped with grilled chicken, red and yellow peppers, cherry tomatoes, sweet snap peas and asparagus make for a crunchy, fresh salad.

For a dressing I went with an Asian flare………..Ginger Garlic Dressing. It’s tangy with rice wine vinegar, just a small amount of oil, ginger, garlic, soy and honey……..very yummy.

The best thing about this salad is you can make it in advance and assemble it when you are ready. All the components can keep for up to two days, isn’t that nice, you can make it when you have time and eat it when you don’t…………makes life so much easier to have a little something in reserve for the days you don’t have time to cook! Bonus………it’s HEALTHY!!!!

So, make up this salad today and enjoy it when you are done with all that Spring cleaning……….which reminds me, I best get busy!

Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad Collage

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Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad

Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Yield: 4

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces chicken breast tenderloins, halved crosswise
  • Salt and ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or cooking oil
  • 8 ounces fresh asparagus, trimmed
  • 8 ounces fresh sugar snap peas, trimmed
  • 3 cups mixed salad greens
  • 1/2 each medium yellow and red pepper cut into thin strips
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes
  • 1 Recipe Ginger Garlic Dressing

Instructions

  1. Directions
  2. 1. Sprinkle chicken lightly with salt and pepper. In a large skillet cook chicken in hot oil over medium-high heat for 6 to 8 minutes or until no longer pink, turning to brown evenly. Remove chicken from skillet. Place chicken on a plate and cover, chill at least 1 hour. You may also leave in refrigerator for up to two days.
  3. 2. In microwave cook asparagus and pea pods, covered, in a microwave safe dish for 1 to 2minutes or until crisp-tender. Drain; place in an ice bath to cool. Drain well. Serve immediately or place in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 2 days.
  4. 3. To serve, in a very large bowl toss together chilled chicken, asparagus, pea pods, watercress, sweet pepper, and tomatoes. Add Ginger Garlic Dressing; toss well.
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Grilled Chicken Veggie Salad

Garlic Ginger Dressing

  • Author: Marty Boyd
  • Yield: 4

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger root
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Dash ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Measure all dressing into a small screw top jar. Cover and shake well. Serve immediately or store in refrigerator up to 1 week; shake before serving.