Sunday, March 21, 2010


This is a grain that I hadn't tried before. Kamut is an ancient grain that is only raised organically. I first heard it mentioned as a very important health food by Dr. Oz on Good Morning America.
I like grains in salads or used as a substitute for rice. We all need more fiber in our diet and this is a good one to try.

Kamut and Wild Rice Salad
1 cup kamut*
1 cup wild rice
1 cup dried cranberries
2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped fine
1/2 cup orange juice
1/4 cup extra light olive oil
1/4 red or white wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
dash Worcestershire sauce
salt and freshly ground pepper
Place kamut in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Soak overnight. Drain kamut and add 1 cup fresh water. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 50-60 minutes, until tender. Drain off water if there is any left in pan. Remove from heat and cool.
Wash wild rice and bring to boil in a sauce pan with 3 cups water. Cover and reduce heat. Simmer for 40-50 minutes or until tender. Do not over cook. Drain the wild rice and cool. Put in a large bowl, wild rice, kamut, dried cranberries, carrots, onions and parsley. Set aside.
Whisk together the dressing ingredients. Pour over the rice mixture and stir well. Refrigerate until ready to serve. May be made a day or two ahead.
I garnish with orange slices.
Serves 8 as a salad or 4 as a main course.
I purchased the kamut from our local health food store. The store carries bulk grains.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


My salad bowl of lettuce on my deck.
Continuing from Chili Lime Vinaigrette, this is a good vegetable salad with a a salad dressing included, but the Chili Lime Vinaigrette would work very well.
My dear friend Mikey from Austin gave me this recipe several years ago. It is a great dish with grilled meat or add some grilled chicken sliced and make a one dish meal.
Sort of Mexican, certainly all the ingredients can be found there. When we have the spa lunch in Ixtapan de la Sal, we always have sliced jicama on the table as an appetizer served with a salad dressing type dip.
Black Bean and Corn Salad
1/2 cup olive oil
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 to 2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 or 4 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups diced, peeled jicama
2 cups whole kernel corn, fresh cut from cob , cooked about 2 minutes , or frozen corn thawed or 1 (15 ounce) can of corn drained. All these will work, of course fresh is the best, for fresh add a little salt and sugar to cooking water.
1/2 cup finely chopped red bell pepper
1 cup fresh chopped cilantro
Leafy lettuce
Making dressing:
In a large bowl whisk together all ingredients until well blended.
Add the salad ingredients, except lettuce. Toss to mix and coat with dressing. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour for the flavors to develop.
Serve on lettuce.
I like this served at room temperature.
Serves 10


We had a wonderful time with our friends in Mexico. It was so nice to see the sun after the bad winter we have all had. Our friends from Virginia have had a miserable winter and they were really happy to see the sun.
We go to a golf and spa resort in the mountains, about 6500 feet, southwest of Mexico City. It is an agriculture area, where vegetables and flowers are grown and probably some we buy in our grocery stores.
Every morning we were served a dish of fresh assorted fruit and a large glass of fresh squeezed orange juice. At lunch and dinner we always had a great salad. Why was it so much fresher than the salads we make at home. We decided because it wasn't from a bag. I have bought leafy lettuce and washed myself since I have been home and it does taste fresher to me than the bagged. For a really fresh salad, I bought some lettuce sets at the nursery and made a salad bowl arrangement for the table on my deck. I will just snip off leaves for a salad and it will continue to grow until it gets really hot. By giving the pot a little less afternoon sun, you might keep it going well into the summer. A fresh start of lettuce can be done in the late summer for a fall salad bowl.
This recipe is a very simple dressing, but a great fresh salad addition.
Chili Lime Vinaigrette
Juice of 4 limes (2 tablespoons = 1 nice sized fresh lime)
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1/2 cup fresh cilantro chopped
1/2 Tablespoon sugar
1/2 cup oil*
Salt and pepper
*I use olive oil for most salad dressings, but for this one I use a high quality vegetable oil, such as canola oil.
This is a good dressing for all fresh greens salad or a mixed salad. I use vegetables as follows: lettuce, tomatoes, avocados, green onions, black olives and anything with a southwestern flavor.
For a different flavor, use the lime juice, sugar, salt and pepper and change the seasoning. Garlic, fresh chopped basil, and olive oil. Add some orange juice along with lime juice, canola oil and substitute honey to taste for sugar for a fruit, nuts and lettuce salad. Use what ever pleases your taste.