Tag Archives: salad

Ga-Ga For Garbanzos

Summer’s almost here and I am always looking for new salad ideas…particularly ones that don’t involve mayo which are not only healthier, but more warm weather picnic friendly.

When I saw this chickpea and raisin salad in June’s {Real Simple}, I immediately dog-earred it.

I’ve already confessed my love for garbanzo beans. I love raisins. And cilantro. And smokey cumin. No brainer, right?


For a change, I used flat leaf parsley instead of cilantro. Every time I chop flat leaf for a recipe I wonder why I don’t use it more often. It adds so much fresh flavor to the dish ~ not to mention gorgeous color!

This salad is delish. I’m certain it will be more flavorful the longer it sits.

I made it to take to Elliott’s last day of school picnic lunch on Friday.

Hope it lasts that long…….

Rabbit Food & Rabbit Ears

We’re on like night four of salad, protein and no carb for dinner.

I’m certain Jay is dreaming of pasta, rice, tortillas and bread.

Last night I made my favorite burgers {turkey with horseradish & cheddar cheese} and we ate them sans buns.

With salad.

{mixed greens, carrots, red pepper, sugar snap peas, cucumber, red onion, raisins, blue cheese, garbanzo beans and light ranch}.

Tonight we’re having the SAME thing.

Although, I’m adding some curried carrot soup…again, one of my faves and super easy.

Looks like I’m going to have to do some serious meal planning action.

Fortunately there is a Cooking Light subscription with my name on it making it’s way to the mailbox soon.

I need some new ideas.

Stay tuned…..more new recipes to come!

And speaking of staying tuned….we’re NOT going to be….we’ve {Jay} has decided that for the first quarter of 2011 we’re turning off Direct TV.

No Bravo.

I’m dying inside.

And then he informs me that the new TVs these days do not have antennas so you can’t even get a fuzzy showing of local channels!

A pair of old skool rabbit ears is looking pretty attractive right now.


I think it will be good. I can’t imagine how much more I’ll/we’ll get done without our dear friend, Mr. Samsung. Last night as I was in the workout room watching RHofBH, I thought at least I may get more elliptical and treadmill time in if I HAVE to go to the gym at night to watch TV!

It’ll be interesting to see how it goes ~ it could go either way.

Who wants to invite us over to watch the Superbowl?


On another note, here is a hint {a big one} of the theme of Holden’s birthday next month:


The planning is {ablaze}…..


Happy Friday Floppers!

Perfect Portable Pigskin Picnic

I decided to pack a healthier dinner to take to the UCLA game last night…

I love me some chopped salads!

Asian Chop Chop Salad with Sriracha-lime Ranch

{This salad was inspired by one of my favorites ~ Chopped Taco Salad}

I just took some romaine hearts and sliced/chopped into bite size pieces.

I added some ground turkey that I browned up with a little green onion, some grated carrot and some TJ’s soyaki sauce. {this is the same mixture for our favorite lettuce wraps, too} I then chopped some veggies…red pepper, red onion, sugar snap peas, more grated carrots, cucumber and cilantro. Throw in some mandarin oranges and some Wasabi Ranch wonton crunchies and toss with store bought ranch dressing doctored up with a few squeezes of lime and some sriracha sauce!

{these are my new fave find}

I layered it in some plastic food storage containers and carried the wontons and dressing separately to toss right before serving.

I was afraid that these containers {5 cups} were a little to small and the portions would leave us still hungry, but it was plenty.

It was reeeallly good. Spicy from the dressing and sweet from the mandarin oranges. Can’t wait to make this again. Next time I’ll use napa cabbage and throw in some toasted sliced almonds for added crunch.

A healthier alternative to your average tailgate grub.

It’s perfect because you don’t need plates ~ just eat it right out of the container.


Cobb & A Bob

Sounds kinda like a new Dr. Seuss book, huh?

If you’re a cobb salad lover, then you really must try these cobb salad wraps:

They were inspired by a cobb salad sandwich I enjoyed a million and a half years ago up in wine country…

I would suggest a spinach or sun-dried tomato tortilla, but a regular flour one works just fine.

Cobb Salad Wraps

3 frozen chicken tenders or one large chicken breast, thawed

Montreal Steak seasoning or salt & pepper

1 hard boiled egg, chopped

Bacon (I used the REAL bacon bits in the little jar, but if you have some just cook it up and chop)

Blue cheese crumbles (about 2T…it can be overpowering so don’t go overboard)

1/2 tomato, seeded & chopped

Olives, chopped (I omit these since they’re not my fave)

Shredded lettuce

Avocado slices


Bottled Ranch dressing

Sprinkle Montreal Steak seasoning on chicken and grill on grill pan (you can also use a rotisserie chicken or some leftovers). Let cool and cut into bite-sized pieces and put into a bowl.

Add egg, bacon, blue cheese, tomato & olives. Mix with a bit of mayo to bring it all together.

Drizzle just a bit of Ranch onto a flour tortilla and sprinkle some lettuce down the middle. Add a couple slices of avocado and then a couple spoonfuls of the chicken mixture. Fold in both ends of the tortilla followed by the sides. Place seam side down and cut in half!

Super tasty.


I took Miss Elliott to get a cute bob this afternoon:

I am SO over her fighting me every night and morning when I try to brush it.

“Yes, you HAVE to comb your hair after the bath.” and “Yes, you MUST brush your hair before school!”

This will help for a little while.

She loves her new ‘do and is getting so much better in the chair. Yay!

I hope you’re doing whatever makes you HAPPY this weekend!

Egg Salad With An Attitude

It’s Friday during Lent so I was searching for a way to punch up the ‘ol egg salad recipe.

I decided to marry my newfound infatuation for jarred jalapeños and my ever-lasting love of cilantro with a little mayo, salt, pepper & cayenne pepper (oh, and a few hard boiled eggs!)

“Jalantro” Egg Salad

Chop it all up, add a little mayo, s&p and cayenne then spread on your favorite bread (or not)…

…and you’re ready for a Friday picnic in the park!

I snuck a taste and was pleasantly surprised…to me, eggs sort of have that “vanilla” type flavor that blends well with almost anything. I’m looking forward to my upgraded egg salad today.

Now off we go to enjoy this little bit of sunshine before the rain visits us again!

Hope you’re having a bright & shiny Friday.

The Bachelor, Boot Camp & BBQ

OK, so I’m going to devote 2 minutes of blog time to The Bachelor…

Did I want him to choose Tenley? Yes
Would I be upset if he picked Tenley and then broke things off next week? Yes
Even up to the last minute did I see him picking Vienna? No

I actually thought he was going to opt out all together and walk away still “single”.

After I watched The Final Rose, I had different feelings, though…they both looked so happy. I am a hopeless romantic and whether or not it’s “reality love” or “real love” doesn’t matter…really. I’ll still watch the show and always HOPE that real love comes out of it.

Am I wasting my time? Can I be doing something way more productive? Probably. But I will tune into Jason & Molly’s wedding next Monday and I will be there when Ali begins her journey as the next Bachelorette.

I will always be there hoping for a fairytale ending….

You can judge me if you want ~ I’m OK with it.

Am I OK with Jake choosing Vienna? Yes
Will I be pissed if they break up tomorrow? Yes!!!

‘Nuff said!


I just signed up for boot camp.

I’m really excited.

Starting in late March on Monday and Wednesday evenings I’ll be busting my butt for 75 minutes and hoping for some results in time for Summer.

I’m going to take some “before” and “after” pics so I can track the progress. I think that by incorporating the boot camp into my usual elliptical training and sporadic running that I will see better results and enjoy a little variety in my workouts.

I’m actually looking forward to feeling sore and exhausted until the middle of May!


How good does this salad look?

Thanks to Hollie for suggesting that I put my leftover pulled pork into salad form.

I love, love, love the BBQ Chicken Salad at California Pizza Kitchen so I tried to do a copy cat version of that:

Chopped iceberg lettuce (I know, I know NO nutritional value)

Slightly warmed pulled pork

Diced red pepper

Red onion slices

Chopped cilantro

Chopped jalapeños

Corn kernels

Just a sprinkle of colby jack cheese

…and a drizzle of Ranch dressing


May have to make pulled pork more often……….

Sat-Sun Summary

After devouring my heavenly doughy bagel from Noah’s yesterday morning, I got really lazy.

I had good intentions:

~ take down decorations from Holden’s party!
~ clean out/straighten up the garage
~ go to the grocery store
~ do some laundry
~ workout
~ make sushi for dinner

I managed to accomplish ONE of the above mentioned tasks…laundry!

Instead of carrying out the other five chores, I made some banana bread:

…and viewed this gorgeous rainbow after cuddling up on the couch and doing nothing ALL day:

Since I didn’t make it to the store, I raided the freezer for dinner and we feasted on Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken and some of Lola’s lumpia ~ not too shabby.

But today was much more productive. It was gorgeous and Jay played outside with the kids while I ran a couple errands. I decided to make pulled pork and potato salad for dinner.

I found this pork shoulder on sale and grabbed a BBQ pulled pork seasoning package. Thanks for the tip, Lisa!

Just trim outside fat off roast, plop into the slow cooker, combine seasoning packet with 1 cup ketchup, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar, mix and pour over pork….Voila! (Note: I am going off memory on the amounts above, but they’re close – just follow the EASY instructions on the back of the packet.)

8 hours on low or 4 on high and you will have this:

Hawaiian Sweet Roll Pulled Pork Sliders


I made some Spicy Ranch Potato Salad to go alongside. (Adapted from my sister’s Ranch potato salad recipe.)

This time I used 2 large russet potatoes (1.88 lbs.) since I only wanted a little bit of potato salad….uh, these 2 taters made a TON of tater salad! Normally I use a 3 lb. bag of red potatoes, quarter them and leave the skins on. This time I skinned the russets and cubed them before boiling. Once they are fork tender, drain, cool and add the following:

1/4 red onion, minced
2-3 stalks celery, chopped (I use a mini food processor) My sister also turned me on to using the leafy parts of the inner stalks which I used to trash. These add a lot of extra flavor so I throw in some chopped leafy parts, too.
2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
3/4 package Ranch dressing mix (I swear this is the secret to this recipe)
10-12 jalapeño slices, chopped
2 Tbsp. yellow mustard
1/4 to 1/2 cup mayo depending on your mayo threshold (I’m a mayo girl, but don’t like my potato salads too heavy – if that’s at all possible!?!)
Salt & pepper to taste

Mix all together and chill in ‘fridge for an hour or so before serving.

I was able to go workout while dinner was in the crock pot!

No, I haven’t taken down the decorations or worked on the garage, but there’s always tomorrow, right?

This week’s recipes:

Salmon Cakes & Parmesan Roasted Asparagus

(I picked up a couple gorgeous bunches of asparagus today for 97 cents a pound!)

Oh, and what do you think about flipflopfollies’ new look?

No more cheesy red flip flops and candy cane border!

Kudos to my personal blog bling’er, Jay!

I {L-O-V-E} it, babe! Thank you!

Superbowl Eats

OK, this will be the last of the recipe posts for a bit…I’ll be eating rice cakes and water for the next week and those two aren’t very blog worthy! I feel like ALL I’ve been posting lately is FOOD, FOOD, FOOD…so this next week, I am going to shoot for some calorie free topics. But……..

Today we had some neighbors over for the Superbowl and I tried to keep things simple with some quick and easy favorites, but I’ve been wanting to try these Cranberry Meatballs since the holidays, so I HAD to make them for the big game today. The verdict is that they were a hit because when I went to take a picture of them all nestled in the crock pot swimming in their sweet cranberry sauce, there were only about 5 remaining:

This recipe is a keeper and next time I may try them with turkey meatballs although they were just perfect with the beef variety. Super easy AND a big hit? That’s a good recipe in my book.

Then there was the always popular Sonoma Salad

which again, when I went to the bowl to snap a pic this was all that was left:

This is a great salad because it’s so versatile and can be switched out with different goodness:

{switch out the butter lettuce with spring mix or baby spinach}

{substitute gorgonzola or goat cheese for the blue}

{use dried blueberries, cherries or raisins in place of the Craisins}

{honey roasted almonds can easily replace the glazed walnuts}

{pears can take the place of the apple}

The possibilities are endless and that is why I love this go-to salad! Again, thank you Melanie for bringing this to us almost 3 years ago when we brought our sweet baby Holden home! This salad also brings back happy memories every time I serve it!

And then there is the Artichoke Dip that tickled my taste buds so many years ago in the Qualcomm Stadium parking lot! I’ve loved it and made it LOTS ever since. No oven necessary!

Normally I use quartered artichoke hearts, but Albertson’s was fresh out of them this morning so I tried these artichoke bottoms and there was nothing sacrificed. I just chopped the bottoms in my mini food processor and that was that ~ not any real difference than with the quarters.

And there she is….served with a multigrain baguette and some Ritz crakers…sheer perfection on a carb! Can’t go wrong with this one folks, believe me!

I realize that my decor looks more like a bridal shower or Mother’s Day brunch and not reflective at all of Superbowl Sunday, but nobody seemed to care…these recipes are all a hit and I hope that you try them sometime soon! Whoever is on the receiving end will thank you!

We washed all these yummies down with a good ‘ol Cape Codder or vodka cran with lime!

It was a great game with a great menu spent with great friends….another weekend down! Bring on Monday!

I hope you have a “super” week ahead!

South Of The Border Salad


I kicked off the weekend with my Ladies and Chopped Taco Salad with Spicy Sour Cream Ranch Dressing. All that was missing was a ‘rita on the side!

This salad is perfect for Summer……or whenever!

Chopped Taco Salad

1 head iceberg lettuce, rinsed and chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 package ground turkey, chicken or beef (about a pound)
1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1 package taco seasoning mix
1 can black beans, rinsed & drained
1 small can corn, drained
2 roma tomatoes, chopped
1 cup shredded cheese (cheddar, jack, pepperjack, whatever floats your boat)
1 avocado, diced

cilantro, chopped (optional)

olives, chopped (optional)

green chiles, chopped (optional)

Sauté the onions in the olive oil for 5 minutes or so. Add the ground meat and brown – breaking up with a wooden spoon. Once the meat is cooked through, add about 3/4 of the taco seasoning package reserving the rest for the dressing. Add about 2 Tbsp. water to the meat mixture and cook for a few minutes longer. Let cool.

I like to layer my salad in a glass bowl – lettuce, meat, black beans, corn, tomato, cheese, avocado, lettuce, meat, black beans,corn, tomato, cheese & avocado.

Spicy Sour Cream Ranch Dressing

1/2 cup low fat Sour Cream
Low fat Milk
Packet Ranch Dressing Mix
Reserved taco seasoning from package

Put sour cream in a small bowl along with about 1 Tbsp ranch seasoning and the rest of the taco seasoning. Add about 4 Tbsp milk and whisk together. I like my dressing a little thinner so add more or less milk depending on how thick you desire your dressing.

Don’t toss until right before serving….the salad can get soggy pretty quick.

Garnish with crushed tortilla chips or, if you’re really feeling naughty, crushed Doritos. Cornbread is a tasty sidekick, too!

Have a wonderful weekend….Adios!

Eat Meatloaf!

People either like meatloaf or don’t like meatloaf.


I finally found one and burned all my previous meatloaf recipes.

Ina Garten knows how to do meatloaf. Here is her recipe.

Moist.(I don’t like this word, but in the meatloaf world, this is a good thing). Flavorful. Delicious.

Please don’t let the picture below be a turn off. Ina is a fan of free forming her meatloafs…..I prefer a loaf pan, but this thing would never fit in my loaf pan in a million years. But, it’s g-o-o-d and equally yummy the next day on a sandwich with a little TJ’s Wasabi Mayo!

You may want to consider cutting this recipe in half, because, um….5 pounds of ground turkey is A LOT! I used about 2.5 pounds of ground turkey in the meatloaf below:

Instead of topping with plain ketchup, I mix regular yellow mustard, ketchup & brown sugar and slather on the top before baking.

I served it along with this Sonoma Salad which is always a hit:

1 bag Butter Lettuce, Spring Mix, Baby Spinach, etc.

Half of a large Fugi apple, chopped

Bleu cheese, gorgonzola or goat cheese

Craisins, raisins or both

Candied walnuts, chopped (I like Emerald~Original)

Marie’s Poppy Seed Dressing (in the short bottle in the refrigerated section)

(Salad courtesy of Melanie Corona! Thanks, Mel!)