I think that Mediterranean flavors might be my favorite – they are so fresh and seem lighter than lots of others (like Mexican!).
When the weather is warmer I love meals that can be made on the stove without heating up the house. And, nothing says spring like salad!!!
This one was so good!!!
1 package frozen cheese tortellini
1 package polish sausage (I used beef), sliced
1 jar prepared pesto (you could make your own – I tend to go the easy route!!)
fresh baby spinach, chopped
red bell pepper, chopped
baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
black olives, sliced
1 can cannelloni beans, drained
Cook tortellini according to package directions. (BTW – so cool how much they plump up!!)
In a large skillet, cook sausage over medium heat for 6-7 minutes (until lightly browned).
Transfer to a large bowl. Add spinach, mushrooms, pepper, olives, beans and cheese.
Drain tortellini and stir in. Stir in pesto and enjoy!!
The entire family liked this and I have a feeling we will have this one numerous times during the next few months!!!
I think it would be a great side if you made it without the sausage, too.
Sadly, even at my age (44) there are many foods that for one reason or another, I have never tried. This is the year that I’m working on changing that!!
Hopefully when my boys are adults, they will have many less ingredients on their list of things they have never tried!!!
However, this week I changed that not only for myself but also for my husband and boys!!!
Greek Barley Salad
- 1 t olive oil
- 3 c chicken broth
- 1 c uncooked pearl barley
- 1 cucumber, diced
- 1 c grape tomatoes, halved
- 1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
- 1 small can sliced olives
- 1 container (4 oz) Feta cheese
- 3 T olive oil
- 1 t grated lemon rind
- 2 T fresh lemon juice
- 1 T minced fresh basil
- 1 t minced fresh thyme
- 1 t red wine vinegar
- salt to taste
- minced garlic (3 cloves or 1.5 t)
Bring broth to a boil in a large saucepan; add barley. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 35 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.
Combine barley, cucumber, tomatoes, bell pepper, olives and feta in a large bowl.
Combine oil, lemon rind and juice, basil, thyme, vinegar, salt and garlic; stir well. Add to barley mixture and mix well. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
And, if you wanted to turn this into a meal (especially in the summer), you could easily add some chicken!!
I HAVE A NEW FAVORITE SALAD!!! I’m not kidding – I could probably eat this stuff every day!!! In fact, I think next time I will add some chicken and then have it for lunch for the week!!!
Spinach, Feta & Pine Nut Salad
- baby spinach leaves (approx. 4 c or enough to fill your salad bowl!)
- chopped fresh mint (this amount is up to you and how much you like the minty taste)
- 2 oz Feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 pkg. pine nuts
- 1 lemon
- 1 T olive oil
- oregano to taste
- dill to taste
Toast pine nuts – sprinkle on small baking sheet and toast at 375 for about 5 minutes.
Zest lemon; juice lemon into the zest and add olive oil. Sprinkle oregano & dill into lemon mixture and set aside.
Combine spinach & mint in large bowl.
Just before serving, mix lemon dressing, spinach & pine nuts.
Maybe not the greatest picture because there isn’t much color but you have got to try this salad – it is so good!!! Light, refreshing and easy to throw together!
- 6 Roma tomatoes, chopped
- red onion, chopped (about 1/2 of onion)
- 4-5 c frozen corn (you could definitely use fresh corn!)
- 1-2 T olive oil
- 3 T minced fresh basil
- 1 T minced fresh cilantro
- Balsamic vinegar (about 1/4 c – I just drizzled some in, stirred, tasted)
- 1 T Dijon mustard
- 1 T minced garlic (feel free to use cloves that you peel and chop – I’m all about convenience!)
- salt & pepper to taste
This stuff is good (and a bit addictive!!).