Warm Potato Salad

My family knows how to cook potatoes well which doesn’t surprise me since this humble vegetable is very versatile. My grandmother is known for her amazing mashed sweet potatoes (which really only shares the same name, since it’s a root vegetable not a nightshade), my nana has a great scalloped potato recipe, my dad can make melt in your mouth twice-baked potatoes and my mom sure knows how to toss a warm potato salad. While I don’t love potatoes in any form, the preceding dishes are far too tasty to pass up. The heavy consistency of potatoes leaves me feeling almost too full which is perfect when I need extra comforting. IMG_6845

It’s been rather chilly (okay, cold for my liking and for it being Summer) this past week which has left me craving warmer foods so I couldn’t have been happier when my mom suggested making her warm potato salad. I’ve been feeling a bit under the weather and an extra helping of carbohydrates was exactly what I needed, or so I’m choosing to believe. Besides, potatoes are technically vegetables it’s just that their high content of starch makes them taste more like rice or pasta, not that there is anything wrong with eating copious amounts of carbohydrates.IMG_6849

I couldn’t let my mom have all of the fun in the kitchen though, so I offered to help which ended up consisting of a lot of picture taking with a tiny bit of chopping. Whoops. Just a forewarning, this salad tastes much better than it presents! Regardless, here’s the recipe we came up with based on a very tattered and torn recipe from Canadian Living back 1992 (the year before I was born). It is an excellent source of fibre and iron and even contains a fair bit of protein. What’s your favourite way to cook potatoes? Do you enjoy fried potatoes in the form of hash, chips or french fries?  ♥ Molly

Fun Fact: The world’s largest potato weighed in at 18 pounds, 4 ounces according to the Guinness Book of World Records. That’s enough for 73 portions of medium fries at McDonalds. Did you know that potatoes have also been grown in outer space and that they did not originate from Ireland despite the popular belief?IMG_6853

Warm Potato Salad

Serves 6 as a Main Course, GenerouslyIMG_6832

Salad 

  • 2 lb red potatoes, quartered
  • ½ lb green beans, halved (3 large handfuls)
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cans tuna packed in water, drained and chunked (368 g)

Dressing 

  • 2 tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 3 tsp olive oil
  • Pinch of ground black pepper, to taste
  1. In a small measuring cup, whisk together white wine vinegar, apple cider vinegar, water, Dijon mustard, garlic, olive oil and black pepper. Let dressing sit for 10 minutes to allow flavours to intensify and combine.IMG_6814
  2. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a large pot. Add potatoes and simmer on medium high for 5 minutes or under potatoes are almost tender. Add green beans and continue to boil for 3 minutes or until beans and potatoes are fully cooked. Drain water and transfer potatoes and beans to a serving bowl.IMG_6807
  3. Drizzle dressing and toss in chopped green onions, celery and red pepper. Carefully mix in tuna trying not to break up chunks or mash the potatoes.IMG_6820
  4. Serve on top of a bed of spinach. Enjoy. IMG_6847

Fresh Fortifying Summer Salad

I try my best to participate in “Meatless Mondays” and consume plant based protein sources on a weekly basis. While I do enjoy barbecued chicken or baked salmon, you’ll hardly ever find me consuming red meat. Growing up if I didn’t like the way something looked, I wouldn’t try it! Vegetables never turned me off, however pork, ham and red meat never made their way into my diet. Thankfully the blog world (Pinterest!) is full of healthy vegetarian and vegan recipes. Unfortunately for me, common ingredients in these sorts of meals are nuts. “Napa Almond”, “Coconut Cashew”, “Maple Walnut” are all appealing flavour combinations, but are also off limit due to my allergies. Angela, from Oh She Glows, (The first food blog I ever read) recently created a “Rad Rainbow Raw Pad Thai”. The second I saw it, I knew I had to try it, but after looking into the recipe I saw that there were a few small problems. Firstly, I don’t own a spiralizer. Secondly, red cabbage is one of the only vegetables that upsets my stomach. Thirdly, and most importantly, I can’t enjoy the salad dressing as it is a “Peanut Lime” sauce.  Lucky for me, I’m used to modifying recipes, so I decided that I would create my own version. While Angela considers hers to be a pad thai (the zucchini strings really do resemble noodles), I’d call mine a salad. Regardless, the recipe  is nutrient dense, extremely flavourful and very filling. Enjoy!  ♥ Molly

“Food is an important part of a balanced diet.” – Fran Lebowitz

IMG_5836 IMG_5840 IMG_5846Fresh Fortifying Summer Salad

Makes 6 generous cupsIMG_5854

Salad

  • 1 large zucchini
  • 3 cups loose kale leaves, stems removed
  • 2 large carrots, peeled
  • 1.5 cups frozen endamame, thawed
  • 1.5 cups chickpeas
  • 3 green onions, chopped (or 1/4 cup red onion)
  • 1 bell pepper, thinely sliced
  • 4 tbsp. sesame seeds

Dressing

  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tsp. maple syrup (optional)
  1. In a food processor, pulse kale leaves until coarsely chopped. Change the blade to grate, and grate in carrots. If you do not have a food processor, finely chop and grate the ingredients by hand. Transfer to a large serving bowl and set aside.
  2. Using a mandolin, peeler or spiralizer, prepare the zucchini so that it is julienned. Transfer into the serving bowl, adding with it the endamame, chickpeas, onion and bell pepper.IMG_5831 IMG_5834
  3. In a small bowl, prepare the dressing by whisking all ingredients together. Pour over salad and toss to combine. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve.IMG_5858

Summer Salads

Salads are my go to item at a restaurant, especially during the summer. Typically you can substitute toppings (If I am doing this, I normally am exchanging cheese or nuts) to customize the flavour to your liking. Salads aren’t too heavy but still pack in a lot of nutrients through added toppings.

Artisano: Baby Spinach and Arugula (No dressing and beets instead of pecans)

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Panera Bread: Half Barbecue Chopped Salad and Half Spinach Power Salad

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Whole Foods: Salad Bar

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 Garlic’s in London: Raw Root Salad

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If I weren’t allergic to nuts, my salads would definitely contain some slivered almonds, toasted pecans and candied walnuts. No fear though, I am a huge fan of chickpeas, endamame, beans, chicken, fish and of course tofu so I still manage to get some healthy fats and added protein.

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I tend to browse through all of the salads offered at a restaurant, to spark some ideas of my own. To make a salad, all you have to do is start with a big bowl of your favourite leafy greens (Sometimes I omit the greens and instead start with a grain such as quinoa or couscous), and toss in a rainbow of colour. From Mango Salad to Crab Salad, Strawberry Spinach Salads to Lentil Salad, the options are limitless. Some are served without dressing but if I am in need of a drizzle, this is my go to vinaigrette recipe:

Maple Mustard Vinaigrette

  • 1 tsp. Dijon Mustard (The Seasoning)
  • 2 tsp. Lemon Juice (The Juice)
  • 1 tsp. Maple Syrup (Sweetness)
  • 1 tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar (The Vinegar)
  • 2 tbsp. Olive Oil (The Oil)
  • 1 pinch Ground Black Pepper (The Seasoning)

Note: I typically mix these ingredients in the order they are listed. I tend to leave the pepper for last, incase the dressing is already extremely flavourful. Using a small whisk, encourage the oil and vinegar to come together however they don’t mix, so they will separate. For this reason, I always re-stir right before tossing the salad.  

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This will be plenty for a family sized salad (Six generous helpings). I typically use this over my kale salads, to add a bit of sweetness in contrast to the raw toppings; peas, onions, tomatoes and mushrooms. It’s a perfect side to compliment a protein of choice.

Vinaigrettes are the easiest dressings to make and in my opinion, they enhance the ingredients already present within the salad. What is your favourite salad combination? ♥ Molly

“Freshens without enfeebling and fortifies without irritating.” –  Jean Anthelme Brillat- Savarin

Please note, all of these photos were self-taken. They were edited using an application created by Elsie and Emma