Showing posts with label vegetable. Show all posts
Showing posts with label vegetable. Show all posts


Favorite Summer Pasta Dinner

You know those nights when you just cant bring yourself to cook, but the thought of eating drive thru makes your stomach turn?? This is my simple solution. It's called Favorite Summer Pasta (and anything you have in the fridge) Dinner.

Here's the deal. Look in your fridge or freezer. Pull out any type of vegetable. It can be broccoli, carrots, peppers, spinach, green beans, asparagus. You'll need about 2 cups. Then some protein. Chicken goes well in this dish. Or you can use just about anything you have. I'd probably pass on Spam, but almost anything else goes. Shrimp, turkey, bratwurst, leftover steak, pork, even ground meat. Or if you're not a meat lover, you can simply add more veggies. Tofu (a firm texture) folded into this would be wonderful too!

I used Harmons brand of pasta, which I highly recommend. It has a comparable quality to that of pasta made in Italy. Trust me on this, I've carried home bags full of dried pasta from Italy on past trips. Once I realized for about the same price I could purchase the imported items here, I filled my carry-on with other items.

Get yourself a pot and grow a few fresh herbs.
Joy in a pot. 
If you have access to fresh tomatoes, use them! If you don't have any fresh tomatoes, use boxed or canned. And the fresh herbs? If you don't already have an herb pot, vow to grow one next summer.
In the amount of time it takes you to run to In and Out you can make this at home!
You're going to love it.

Favorite Summer Pasta
A Bountiful Kitchen

1/2 lb Harmons pasta, any shape will do, I used Casarecce pictured above
2-14 oz or one 26.46 oz carton Pomi brand chopped tomatoes,
or about 28-30 oz chopped fresh tomatoes in their own juice
2 cloves fresh garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup fresh basil
2-3 tablespoons each fresh chopped oregano, rosemary, thyme
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
fresh ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup cream (optional)
2 cups chopped fresh vegetable such as asparagus, broccoli, green beans, peppers, etc
2 cups chicken (or other meat), chopped into bite size pieces and cooked
1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese, additional for topping pasta

Cook the pasta according to package directions until al dente, drain and set aside.
Pour the chopped tomatoes in a large saucepan. Simmer over medium high heat. Add garlic, herbs, olive oil, salt and pepper and sugar. Simmer for about 15 minutes or until reduced a bit.
Meanwhile, chop vegetables and place on plate and microwave for about 2 minutes, covered or until the veggies are barely cooked and bright in color. Toss into sauce and add chicken as well.
Add cream and cheese and cook for another minute. Remove from heat. Toss sauce with cooked pasta. Serve immediately with additional grated cheese on top.
Serves about 4 as a main dish or 6 as a side dish

-This recipe is easy to double. Simply double the sauce and cook the entire package of pasta. Doubled, it will serve 8.
-It is best to use fresh vegetables and fresh herbs in this recipe. Although, the Pomi brand (purchased at Harmons) chopped tomatoes work very well in place of fresh tomatoes. if using fresh tomatoes, make sure to use a variety that will yield a lot of juice. I do not recommend using fresh Roma's in this recipe, they don't typically yield enough juice.
-I found the Harmons brand pasta needed a bit more cooking than the package directions. I cooked the pasta for about 10-11 minutes total for a perfect al dente texture. Make sure to test this in your kitchen. Depending on size of pot, how much water and pasta are in the pot, how hard the water is boiling will all be factors in how quickly pasta cooks. Do not over cook!


Smashed Potatoes and Buttermilk Fried Chicken

What says comfort more than fried chicken? This dinner takes just a few minutes to cook after the chicken soaks in buttermilk. I usually place the chicken in the buttermilk early in the day (If the chicken is frozen, I just plop it in the buttermilk as-is.

If you are a little skeptical about cooking fried chicken you're going to love this recipe. It's easy to put together and you can fry batches and then place the cooked chicken in the oven to keep warm. I put the potatoes in the oven about an hour before eating dinner. Then just steam the veggies while you're saying a blessing. What could be easier than this? Ok, besides KFC.

And the leftovers (if you have any)?
You might be tempted to give up your firstborn for a piece of this cold leftover fried chicken.
I'm serious.

Southern Buttermilk Fried Chicken with Smashed Potatoes
original recipe adapted from Mad Hungry  originally posted here

1 quart buttermilk or milk
2 tablespoons Tabasco or other hot sauce
about 4-6 chicken breast halves
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt, plus a little more for sprinkling
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 cup vegetable oil

Smashed Potatoes:
12 small red potatoes, or white will also work
olive oil
coarse ground salt
ground pepper

For potatoes:
Pre heat oven to 350 degrees.
Wash and dry all potatoes, remove any eyes from potatoes with paring knife. 
Grease a 9x13 or jelly roll pan with cooking spray. 
Rub each potato with a bit of olive oil. Sprinkle with salt.
Place pan in oven and bake potatoes for about 1 hour  or until knife inserted in center of potato easily goes through potato. 
Remove and Smash each potato with a fork. Sprinkle each potato with a little more salt and pepper. Drizzle with additional olive oil. If desired, spoon about a teaspoon of butter on each potato, top with Parmesan cheese, grated cheddar, chopped green onions if desired. Or just serve with olive oil and salt! Keep warm in 200 oven until ready to serve. 
-Use whatever amount you need for this recipe. Usually, about 2-3 small potatoes per person. 

Early in day:
In a 9x13 baking dish or gallon sized Ziplock bag, stir together the buttermilk and Tabasco. Place the chicken in the liquid mixture and leave as long as possible. (I soaked the chicken overnight. Place in refrigerator.)

When ready to cook chicken:
In a plastic or paper bag combine the flour, salt, pepper, and cayenne.
Shake the chicken pieces two to three at a time, in the flour. Repeat with the remaining chicken.
In a skillet heat one half inch of oil over medium high heat. Test with a tiny bit of chicken. If it bubbles immediately, it is hot enough.
Place the chicken into hot oil. Distribute as many pieces as will fit in a single layer in the pan, leaving one half inch between pieces. Leave to fry undisturbed for about seven minutes. Lower the heat as necessary to prevent excess browning. The oil should continue to bubble steadily. Turn the pieces and cook for an additional seven to ten minutes.
Remove to a plate lined with paper towels to drain. Repeat process to cook remaining chicken. To keep first batch warm, place on a rimmed baking sheet in a 200 degree oven.

-The original recipe calls for two cups of oil. I used about a quarter to a half inch of oil in the bottom of the pan.
-I used 4-5 boneless chicken breast halves. 
-This was delicious served cold as a leftover the next day.


BLT Pasta Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

Is there a better combo than BLT?  Such a simple idea combining salty, crunchy, smooth and creamy in a sandwich. The colors, the flavors, and the textures are what make this sandwich a favorite for so many. This recipe combines all of those amazing flavors into a simple and colorful salad!
If you take time to do the little things while making this salad - fry and chop the bacon (instead of buying pre-cooked bacon bits), make your own ranch dressing with fresh herbs and garlic (instead of using a bottle of ranch),  I promise you will taste the difference.
Oh, and the homemade Ranch dressing? It's hard to go back to bottled once you make your own.
Sometimes, it's the little things that make all the difference.

BLT Pasta Salad with Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
A Bountiful Kitchen
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1/2 lb bacon
1 large head Romaine lettuce, washed and dried (yield about 16 cups of loosely packed lettuce)
1 lb Grape tomatoes or Roma tomatoes
1-1 1/2 lb cheese-filled ravioli ( I use a 1 lb 4 oz package)
1-2  tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons dry Ranch dressing mix

Buttermilk Ranch Dressing
adapted from The Huffington Post 

1/2 cup well shaken buttermilk
2 tablespoons sour cream
2 tablespoons mayo
1 teaspoon chopped fresh: tarragon, dill, parsley, chives (all or a combo of these)
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard
two dashes Tabasco or other hot sauce
Coarse sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

Prepare dressing:
Place all of the dressing ingredients in a jar. Shake until blended well.
Refrigerate until ready to serve. If you have an immersion blender place all of the ingredients in a jar and pulse until the herbs are chopped fine.

Cook bacon over medium heat until crisp.  Remove bacon from pan and place on paper towels. Pat any remaining grease off of bacon. Place on a cutting board and chop. Set aside.
Cook the pasta according to package directions. Do not overcook. Rinse with cold water, drain. Toss the pasta with 1-2 tablespoon olive oil and 2 tablespoons prepared dry ranch dressing mix. Refrigerate until ready to use.  Let the pasta cool completely before adding to the salad, or the pasta will wilt the lettuce.
Cut the lettuce into bite size pieces.
Slice the grape tomatoes in half, or if using Roma tomatoes, cut into chunks.
Arrange the lettuce in a large bowl. Place the tomatoes over top of the lettuce and top with cooled pasta. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
When ready to serve, toss the salad a bit,  sprinkle with bacon and drizzle with fresh ranch. Serve salad with additional dressing on the side.
Serves12 as a side dish

-When purchasing buttermilk, I try to buy brands that are thicker in texture. Locally (Utah) my favorite brand is Winder Dairy. Their buttermilk is significantly thicker than other brands. If you are concerned about using up all of your buttermilk, try making ABK's buttermilk pancakes, buttermilk biscuits, buttermilk syrup, blueberry buttermilk "buttermilk" in the search bar on the right side of the main page.
-I do not recommend using dry buttermilk for this dressing.
-I usually double the dressing recipe so I can have leftovers for other salads.
-You may use any type of filled pasta in this salad . I like cheese or a combo of spinach and cheese  filled ravioli, but tortellini also works well.
-You may add additional lettuce to this salad to create more servings. If doubling this recipe, double the lettuce but only 1 1/2 the bacon, tomatoes and pasta. Any type of lettuce may be used ( I have even used spinach) I like Romaine because it has a very firm texture, which makes it a good lettuce to support the heavy pasta and tomatoes in this dish. I also like Romaine's dark green color.


ABK's Ultimate Chunky Guac

When we traveled to Mexico a few weeks ago I was in heaven. Guac heaven. Guacamole is one of those items I can eat morning, noon and night. By the end of the week, the boys were saying NO MORE GUAC! But the girls, Grant and I were happy to slather it all over our morning eggs and breakfast quesadillas on our way out of town and back to the good old USA.
I usually just mash the avocado, add some lime juice, salt and garlic. It's one of my favorite lunches. When I have a few more minutes, I love this dressed up version. It includes so many flavors I love- all in one wonderful bite.

This recipe is perfect for watching games, family gatherings and all types of parties.
The ultimate guac?
This is it.

ABK's Ultimate Chunky Guac
A Bountiful Kitchen
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4 ripe avocados
one juicy lime
1 large firm Roma tomato, chopped (if juicy, seed the tomato)
1/2 red pepper, chopped
1/2 of a medium white or sweet onion, chopped
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped coarse
1/2 jalapeño, seeded and minced (more or less, depending on heat level desired)
1 large clove garlic, minced
coarse sea salt
fresh ground pepper

Scoop the avocado out of the skin into a medium size bowl and discard the pit.  Squeeze the juice of the lime over the avocado. Mash the avocado with a fork into large chunks. Place the chopped red pepper, onion, cilantro, jalapeño and garlic into the bowl. Mix gently. Season to taste with sea salt and fresh ground pepper.
Serve immediately, or to keep from browning, spread the mixture evenly in a small bowl using a spatula or the back of a spoon. Press a piece of plastic wrap firmly against the surface of the guac, leaving no room for air to collect. Place in refrigerator until ready to eat. when ready to eat, remove about 15-30 minutes before serving and let sit on counter. Remove plastic wrap , scoop into serving bowl and serve.


Margherita Pasta (updated)

It's summer and if you're like me, you're thinking of every way to avoid turning on the oven, but not eat a sandwich or salad. Again. You're in luck. This recipe involves the stove, but only for a few minutes.
I originally posted this recipe in 2010, but have updated it a bit. Spaghetti Margherita is a simple and straight-forward dish. While the pasta is cooking, you can throw together the sauce.

Some people think- Margherita Pasta? Is that alcoholic? The answer is no. Legend (some question this) says that Pizza Margherita was created in the late 1800's, and named for Queen Margherita to reflect the colors of the Italian flag. The pasta variation followed.

I know I say this all of the time, but EVERYONE loves this dish. When I make it for my boys, they love it, even though it isn't a meat dish. Now that's saying something. Since they have never jumped aboard the "meat is not all that good for you and you should eat it sparingly" train.
Lazy summer days mean lazy summer nights.
This dish fits perfectly with that theme.

Spaghetti Margherita (updated 8/2014)
A Bountiful Kitchen
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3/4 lb. spaghetti, cooked "al dente", drained
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter (optional) optional, but highly recommended for flavor
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
2 lbs. Roma tomatoes (about 10-12) coarsely chopped or grape tomatoes
1 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/2 lb. fresh mozzarella, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
½ cup grated Romano or Parmesan cheese
additional basil leaves for garnish

Cook pasta. Set aside, or while pasta is cooking prepare sauce.
In large skillet, heat oil and butter over low heat. Saute the garlic until fragrant over low heat, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes, sugar, salt and pepper. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. Add basil, and pasta to pan with tomatoes. Cook for 2-3 minutes, just until all pasta is heated through. Just before ready to serve, pour into serving bowl, toss with fresh mozzarella and grated cheese. Serve at once with additional grated cheese, and more fresh basil if desired.
Serves 4 as a main dish, 6 as a side.

-Fresh Mozzarella differs from mozzarella that is sold in most cheese cases at grocery stores. Some grocery stores, such as Harmons in Utah, make their own fresh mozzarella daily.
Make sure you are purchasing fresh mozzarella for this dish. Fresh Mozzarella is made from whole milk in small batches, usually round in shape and surrounded in liquid.
-If you aren't growing basil in your back yard, you can purchase fresh basil at farmers markets, grocery and garden stores. One plant will yield fresh basil for several recipes this summer.


Kale, Radish and Roasted Corn Salad with Parmesan Crisps- Mother's Day 2014 Menu

Hi friends.
Today is  the first recipe in our 2014 Mother's Day Menu.
Get excited.
Have you ever been to Red Butte Cafe in SLC?
Last  summer I went to Red Butte for lunch and ordered the salad of the day. The server promised I'd love it. He was right. I'm not usually a raw kale fan. When I asked the server why the kale was so tender he told me the chef actually massages the greens. Uh. What? Massaging the produce? He claimed that massaging the kale leaves breaks down the fibers, therefore producing a more tender leaf in the salad.  I took some notes from my new found friend and server, and was determined to create my own version of this salad at home.
Because the greens are so firm, the salad keeps well in the fridge and it's perfect for make-ahead. You can make this on Saturday and serve it on Mother's Day. Just re-toss, and add a little more dressing if needed, and top with a few Parmesan crisps.
Mom is going to love it.

Kale, Radish and Roasted Corn Salad with Parmesan Crisps
A Bountiful Kitchen

5-7 oz kale, washed, dried (I used a little over 1/2 of a 10 oz bag)
1 bunch, or about 5-7 medium sized radishes
1 large ear fresh corn or about 1 1/2 cups frozen corn
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, or more if you would like to have a few extra chips

1 cup canola oil
1/4 cup cider vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1-2 clove of garlic, minced
1-2 teaspoons sugar (to taste)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

To make the dressing:
Mix all dressing ingredients with a blender or immersion blender. Taste and add more salt, pepper or sugar as needed. Set aside. Note- you will not use all of the dressing on this salad.

To make the salad:
Wash the radishes, trim off the ends, slice thin. 
Cut the corn off of the cob. Spread on a cookie sheet and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Salt and pepper generously. Roast at 450 degrees for 10 minutes. Let cool. 
Place the kale in a medium size bowl and add about 1/3 cup of the dressing. You may use food handlers gloves for the next step. Work the dressing into the salad with your hands (give the kale a good massage :) This takes about 2 minutes.  Add the radishes and corn when you are finished massaging the dressing into the kale. 

To make the Parmesan crisps:
Heat a pan over medium high heat.  Do not grease the pan. Place piles of grated Parmesan cheese on the hot pan or griddle until the cheese melts and begins to brown on the bottom. Flip to the other side and cook until golden on the opposite side. When cooked to light golden brown on both sides, remove and let cool in single layer on a cooling rack or cookie sheet. 

To assemble the salad:
Add more dressing to the kale mixture if needed. Toss. Add Parmesan chips just before serving. 

Serves 8 as a side salad

-This is a very simple salad. If you roast the corn while making the Parmesan crisps, you will be able to put this salad together in about 20 minutes (or less).
-The dressing is one of my favorites, it goes well on several different types of salad and would make an excellent dressing for any pasta and vegetable salad. 


Orzo Salad with Fresh Lemon and Chive Dressing

I love Orzo pasta salads. There are so many combination possibilities with Orzo.  In my latest Orzo creation, I chose veggies that I love and paired them with a fresh lemon and chive dressing to feature the flavors of Spring.
I'll be making this for our family Easter dinner next Sunday. Total time to make this salad, less than 30 minutes. If you're looking for something fresh, simple and a little out of the ordinary, it's staring you in the face.
Not me, the salad.

Orzo Salad with Asparagus, Tomatoes and Fresh Lemon-Chive Dressing
A Bountiful Kitchen
print recipe

for salad:
1 lb orzo
1 lb fresh asparagus
1 lb grape or cherry tomatoes
1 cup chopped chives, divided (half for dressing, half for garnish)
1 lemon rind, grated fine, using a microplane grater
sliced lemon, for garnish

for dressing:
1 cup canola oil
1/2 cup cider vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup fresh chives
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

Cook the orzo according to package directions, set aside. This may be done up to three days before serving salad.
Wash and snap off the tough ends of the asparagus. Cut into one inch pieces on the diagonal. Place about 1/2 cup of water in a small saucepan. Put the asparagus in the pan, heat until water boils. Cover and cook for one minute. Remove from heat. Asparagus should be bright green. Drain off hot water and pour cool water into the pan. Drain again and place asparagus in the bowl with the cooked orzo. Cut the tomatoes in half and add to the bowl with the orzo and asparagus. Add one half cup of the chopped chives and the grated lemon rind.
In a large measuring cup, Mix all of the dressing ingredients with a whisk,  or place in a blender, or use an immersion blender and pulse until ingredients are blended well.
When ready to assemble, toss all of the salad ingredients. Pour about 3/4 cup of the dressing over the salad. Toss. Let the salad sit a bit before placing in serving bowl or platter.  Just before serving, toss with additional dressing if needed. Garnish with the remaining 1/2 cup of chives and lemon slices.
Serves 12 as a side dish

-Try to assemble and serve the salad on the same day. The pasta may be cooked ahead, but the asparagus is best when tossed with the dressing on the same day.
-You will have leftover dressing. Don't be tempted to drown the salad in dressing. Use the leftover dressing on a green salad, or chopped avocado and tomatoes. This dressing would also make a great marinade for grilled chicken.


Panera Copycat Broccoli Cheddar Soup

Have you been to Panera Bread? It's a chain, and even though I'm not a fan of chain restaurants, I love a sandwich and soup from Panera. Maybe it's  because we don't have Panera in Utah?  You always want what you can't have.
I'm not a fan of super thick and cheesy soup. That's why I like Panera's Cheddar Broccoli. It's filling, but not the gloppy-overly-salty-processed-cheese type of soup you find in so many restaurants. Doesn't that sound so appetizing? I looked at several recipes online that claim to duplicate Panera's recipe. Many of those recipes left out  (little, but significant) ingredients, like a bit of mustard, hot pepper sauce, or paprika, which are all listed as ingredients in Panera's soup.  So, I made my own version- a one pot, less than 30 minute recipe.
Just like Panera in your own kitchen.
It's always better home made.

Panera Copycat Broccoli Cheddar Soup
A Bountiful Kitchen
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1/2  cup butter
1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup  chopped carrots ( I used baby carrots)
4 cups chopped broccoli
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
few drops of hot pepper sauce
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 1/2 cups cream or half and half
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
1/4 cup cornstarch, whisked into 1/2 cup cold water or cold broth
2 cups (about 8 oz)  grated sharp cheddar cheese

Melt butter in large stockpot. Add onions and cook until soft, about 4-5 minutes. Add carrots and broccoli cook for additional 3-4 minutes, season with salt, pepper, paprika and hot pepper sauce.  Pour chicken broth and cream into vegetable mixture. Add one teaspoon mustard, whisk until smooth.
Simmer over medium-low heat.
In a small bowl or cup, whisk the cold water or broth together with the cornstarch until smooth. Pour into the stockpot with the vegetable mixture. Whisk until smooth. Add additional salt and pepper to taste. Add cheese and cook just until cheese is melted. Reduce heat until ready to serve.
Serves 4 as a main course

-Sharp or extra sharp cheese is best for this recipe.
-If you want to make a heartier soup,  cook a couple of chicken breast halves and shred or chop before adding to the finished soup.


Springtime Salad with White Chocolate Pecan Croutons and Harmon's $250 Gift Card Giveaway!

I'm in love.
With a grocery store.

Last week, I was invited to a blogger event at Harmon's City Creek in downtown Salt Lake City. We were treated to a cooking class taught by Aaron, chef and director of the cooking school in the Harmon's City Creek location.

Aaron taught us how to make a creamy asparagus risotto with topped with duck bacon.  Oh my. We were also served a pork tenderloin, cooked using the Sous Vide method.  The tenderloin was served with a balsamic reduction, wilted baby kale, shaved white asparagus and a piece of french cut purple potato.  Absolutely delicious.
Harmon's cooking school  offers a variety of cooking classes at three locations, covering a wide range of classes, individual tailored small group classes and even private parties.

Harmon's is a home grown business, started by Jake and Irene Harmon on the corner of 330 South and Main in SLC.  Harmon's humble beginning in 1932 has grown to 16 stores and over 3,000 associates. Their focus on customer service and fresh, quality products has made Harmon's, in my opinion, the best of the best in Utah.

Original Harmons Market Spot

What started at The Market Spot over 80 years ago has flourished under family ownership. Do you wonder why some businesses fold overnight, while others have long term staying power? After spending the afternoon at Harmon's I can tell you why they have not only survived, but thrived.  Customers are #1 at Harmon's.
Bob Harmon (grandson of Jake and Irene) spent over three hours with us, in the cooking class, and then gave us a department-by-department tour of his store. Bob shared his enthusiasm for everything in the store from the house-made guac to the cookies in the bakery.

It tastes as good as it looks.

I knew Harmon's had the best in-store bakery in the state, but didn't know each and every one of their cookie, cakes and pastries are baked in house.  Everything, right down to the frosting on the cookies are made in-store, with fresh ingredients. That sugar cookie pictured above was one buttery piece of heaven. I may have eaten two of the four I brought home.

Man can live by bread alone. 

The artisan breads are phenomenal. If you love bread like I do, Harmon's is the grocery store for you. Not only do they sell whole loaves, but half loaves and single slices of bread. Oh, happy day!
Sometimes, I sneak in and get a couple of slices of my favorite breads, including sugared challah and a bowl of soup to take home for lunch.  This is the White Chocolate Pecan artisan bread, it's making a guest appearance in my salad today :)

Harmon's famous White Chocolate Pecan Bread

The produce is local when available, and always the highest quality. I recently purchased a 4 lb bag of Harmon's oranges from Brandt Farms in Reedley, CA. The oranges are packed for Harmon's and shipped immediately, which guarantees the freshest product for Harmon's customers.

  I compared a Harmon's orange to one from a warehouse store I had at home, and the Harmon's orange won the sweetness and juiciness test hands down.

Bob's Kabobs

Are you tired of reading about my love affair with Harmon's?  Don't answer that question.
Last chapter.
Harmon's is the only grocery in the state to offer only Prime and Choice beef, the two highes grades on the USDA grading scale. Hormones? You won't find them in any of the meats or poultry sold in Harmon's meat cases. A while back I was looking for Italian sausage without additives. Could not find it.
Except Harmon's.
I purchase a few kabobs for a quick dinner last week. Threw them under the broiler, (because I was too much of a sissy to go outside and grill in the snow). Outstanding.  Even the leftovers were tender, juicy and full of flavor. The quality? = to that of a high end steak house, with a much smaller price tag, $4 for a 8 oz kabob.

Have you worked up an appetite after reading my epistle on Harmon's??
I've got a special dish for you. With Spring approaching I decided to use a few fresh ingredients I found on my most recent trip to  (you guessed it)  Harmon's.  One vegetable in particular, white asparagus, was especially interesting to me. Chef Aaron served it raw and thinly sliced with our lunch.  You can steam it, or serve it raw.  I love it both ways.  It adds a nice white healthy splash to the salad instead of somewhat predictable white grated cheese.

The frosting on the cake (or salad) in this case, are the sugared croutons. They are made from the White Chocolate Pecan Artisan bread found at Harmon's bakery.  They take the place of the commonly used sugared nuts in a sweet and savory salad. I know they're going to be your new favorite. Try this out for your next gathering. It's the perfect salad for your upcoming Easter brunch or the wedding shower you're hosting. Fresh, simple and unique.

If you've been thinking about checking out Harmon's enter this giveaway using the rafflecopter code below. You could win $250 to spend on your next visit to Harmon's!
Good luck :)

you may want to slurp up any leftovers...

Springtime Salad with White Chocolate Pecan Croutons and Fresh Strawberry Dressing
A Bountiful Kitchen
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3 thick slices (3/4 inch thick) White Chocolate Pecan Bread (about 4 cups)*
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons sugar, divided
coarse salt

1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/2 canola oil
1 cup fresh strawberries, washed and cut in half
3-4 tablespoons honey or sugar, to taste
dash salt
pepper to taste

8-12 oz mixed greens, spinach, baby kale, etc.
3 green onions, sliced
4-5 asparagus spears, tough ends snapped off, sliced thin* (optional) or green asparagus may be used
16 oz sliced strawberries (1 cup to be used for dressing)
2 cups fresh blackberries or blueberries

prepare croutons:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place rack on top third of oven . Cut bread into cubes. Use all parts of bread, do not remove crust. Place bread cubes on cookie sheet or jelly roll pan. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with one tablespoon of sugar. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden browned. Remove from oven and let cool.

Prepare salad dressing:
Place all ingredients in blender, blend until smooth. Set in refrigerator until ready to serve salad.
May be made a day ahead. Stir before serving.

Prepare salad:
Place all greens on a platter or in a salad bowl. Arrange fruits and vegetables on top of the greens.  Refrigerate until ready to serve. Place the croutons on the salad just before serving.  Serve with fresh strawberry dressing.
Serves 8-10 as a side salad

-If this bread is not available, you may substitute any type of bread to make the sweet croutons. i suggest using  raisin bread or other artisan bread.
-The white asparagus may be steamed lightly, then cooled quickly in a ice water bath. Place the asparagus in between paper towels to remove excess water and sprinkle lightly with salt. The asparagus
may also be served raw. Wash well and drain, slice thin on an angle.