Northwest NEWS

February 28, 2000

Home & Garden

Dining In: Hearty salads served with hot bread

Mediterranean Rice Salad

   3 c. instant brown rice, cooked
   1 can (15. oz.) black beans, drained, rinsed
   1-1/2 c. cucumber slices, quartered
   1 c. tomato, seeded, chopped
   1/2 c. red onion, chopped
   1/2 c fresh parsley
   3/4 c. Italian dressing

   Mix all ingredients, except dressing, in large bowl. Add dressing; toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate several hours or overnight. Makes 5 servings.

Warm Salad with Eggs

   4 thick slices crusty peasant bread
   1 large garlic clove, halved
   2 c. mesclun baby salad greens
   1 c. Romaine lettuce, torn in 1-inch pieces
   1 c. arugula, torn in 1-inch pieces
   1 Tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
   1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
   1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
   1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
   1 tsp. salt
   1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
   4 large eggs plus 2 egg whites,
   1 tsp. dried oregano
   1/2 tsp. dried thyme or marjoram

   Lightly rub the bread with the cut side of the garlic. Grill or toast the bread and set aside. Place the washed and dried greens in a salad bowl. For the dressing, in a small bowl, whisk together the balsamic vinegar, lemon juice, wine vinegar, olive oil, a half tsp. of the salt, and 1/4 tsp. of the pepper. Set aside. Spray a medium, non-stick skillet very liberally with cooking spray. Place the pan over medium-high heat. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, whites, basil, oregano, and thyme with the remaining salt and pepper. Pour the eggs into a pan.

   Using a wooden spoon, gather the egg that has set into the center of the pan as soon as it solidifies. Keep the eggs moving, reducing the heat if necessary, so they cook slowly enough to remain creamy. This takes about 4 minutes if you like soft eggs, and 5 minutes if you prefer them firm. Immediately turn the eggs into the salad bowl. Stir the dressing and pour it over the eggs. Mix the eggs to combine them with the greens and to coat the salad and eggs with the dressing. Divide among 4 plates. Place a slice of the grilled bread on each plate,and serve immediately.

Spicy Black Bean and Lentil Salad

   2 c. cooked black beans
   2 c. cooked red lentils
   1 tsp. dry mustard garlic
   3 Tbsp. minced garlic
   1 Tbsp. minced fresh parsley
   1 Tbsp. minced fresh cilantro leaves
   1/2 c. rice vinegar
   Juice from 1 lemon
   1 tsp. salt, or to taste
   2 to 3 Tbsp. virgin olive oil
   1 tsp. cayenne pepper
   1 small head butterleaf lettuce, washed and torn
   2 large red bell peppers, cut into 8 rings each
   2 large red potatoes, cooked and sliced thinly
   1/2 c. grated carrots or raw beets

   Place the black beans in one bowl and lentils in another. In a third bowl, whisk together the mustard, garlic, parsley, cilantro, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, oil, and cayenne. Divide the mixture equally between the beans and lentils, cover with plastic wrap, and marinate 1 hour in the refrigerator. Line 8 salad plates with lettuce leaves, then top with rings of bell pepper. Arrange small piles of potatoes, carrots, or beets, beans, and lentils on each plate, then drizzle the remaining marinade over all. Serve at once.

Creamy Confetti Coleslaw

   1 medium carrot, sliced
   1 celery rib, sliced
   1/2 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped
   4 c. finely shredded green cabbage
   4 c. finely shredded red cabbage
   1/2 medium red onion, cut into thin crescents
   2 scallions, green part only
   1/4 c. mayonnaise
   1 c. fat-free buttermilk
   2 Tbsp. white vinegar
   2 tsp. sugar
   1/2 tsp. caraway seeds
   1 tsp. salt
   Freshly ground pepper

   In a food processor, pulse the carrots until they are coarsely chopped. Add the celery and pulse 3-4 times. Add the apple. Pulse until the vegetables are evenly chopped, taking care not to make them too fine. Turn the vegetables into a large stainless steel, plastic or glass bowl. Add the green and red cabbage and onion to the bowl. Cut the scallions into 1-1/2 inch lengths. Cut each piece lengthwise into thin strips. Add the scallion to the bowl. With your hands, toss the slaw until it is evenly mixed. For the dressing, whisk together the mayonnaise and buttermilk. Add the vinegar and sugar. Crush the caraway seeds in a mortar, or place them on a cutting board. Holding a small cast iron skillet or other heavy pot in both hands, use the bottom of the pot to grind the caraway seeds by pressing on them heavily. Mix the caraway into the dressing. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour the dressing over the slaw and mix to combine. Cover the bowl of slaw tightly with plastic wrap, or place in a covered container. Refrigerate at least 2 hours, up to overnight, before serving. This coleslaw keeps 2-3 days. Makes 8 servings.

Whole Wheat Bread With Fresh Herbs

   1/2 c. white flour bread flour
   1 c. whole wheat flour
   1/2 c. rolled oats (not quick-cooking or instant)
   1/2 tsp. baking soda
   1/2 tsp. salt
   1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
   1/4 c. chopped parsley
   1/4 c. chopped scallion, green part only
   2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
   2 eggs, lightly beaten
   1 c. low-fat buttermilk
   1 Tbps. extra virgin olive oil

   Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 9-inch x 5-inch x 2-1/2-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. In a large bowl, combine the two flours, oats, baking soda, and salt and pepper. Mix in the parsley, scallions, and basil. In a small bowl, lightly beat the eggs. Mix in the buttermilk and oil until well combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ones, mixing just until they are combined. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Bake until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Turn the loaf out of the pan and set on a baking rack to cool completely. This bread keeps, wrapped in foil, for 3 to 4 days.