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Highlighting the zucchini at its best! Zucchini Carpaccio is thin slices of zucchini complimented with cherry tomatoes, shaved parmesan and a drizzle of olive oil. Simply divine! I’ve first tried, Zucchini Carpaccio, not in Italy, but in Spain! In a small Catalan village called Montblanc, right next to Barcelona. Such a simple, elegant and delicate appetizer. I would never have imagined that raw zucchini could taste something… Was my first try at raw zucchini… and I’ve got pleasantly surprised! First of all, there is a really nice crunch to it and it’s got a super delicate taste that allows the extra-virgin olive oil to shine through. Cut Finely is the Secret It’s such a light and beautiful appetizer. All you’ll need is a mandoline or a talent to cut really fine slices. You would think the protagonist’s food here is the zucchini, but it’s also the olive oil! So bring out…

Valentino Salad is a perfect starter for a romantic dinner, it’s a light earthy salad with roasted beets, strawberries, roquefort, sunflower seeds and arugula topped with an aged balsamic vinegar. If there is something I like about blogging recipes is to choose a name for my recipes. This one was a no brainer… just a quick look at it and it’s clearly a romantic looking salad and Valentine’s day is coming so Valentin0 Salad seemed appropriate. Since we are all having different eating habits and different partners… I’ve done 2 plating designs for this salad, one really light and modern with the beets being cut into squares and a minimalist presentation with just a few arugula leaves. I’ve used a balsamic cream to decorate the plate. The other version (see below) is a more everyday life salad, maybe a tad less esthetic but filled with arugula and a bigger portion with lots of aged…

Persimmon, Goat cheese, Walnut and Duck prosciutto Salad is a great fall appetizer, just in time for the Persimmon season. Those fruits are quite similar to tomato in looks, although firmer and drier, you can eat then raw, with or without the skin, dried or cooked. They are both, tomato and persimmon, considered a “berry” because of their morphology. Some type of Persimmons are sweeter, other more astringent, but their inside is always composed with a beautiful star form, when cut horizontally, making them perfect for a good looking salad bed. The persimmons should be still firm when you buy them, Hachiyas variety is a little longer then the Fuyu type which is more of a flat pumpkin shape. The Fuyu persimmon is the sweet one and you can easily eat it firm, while the Hachiyas (the long one) is best if you let it ripe a few days on the counter before consuming, to…

The 4 elements salad, as the title say; is a general rule to my salads; the dressing and it’s conception have the 4 elements, which is in my opinion makes the ultimate salads. The rule for the salad itself is; a nutty touch, a juicy touch, a colorful touch and, the last but not the least, a salty creamy smooth touch. In this case more precisely the color element is the crunchy yellow pepper, then the usual tomatoes for the juicy part , some walnuts to get those proteins and crunch factor, and a delicious herb crusted goat cheese for the creamy and salty end. The dressing is also a “4 elements rule”, which are oil, vinegar, sweetener and emulsifier (mustard). With the “4 elements rule” you’ll never fail a salad dressing again. Often those supermarkets premade salad dressing aren’t an healthy choice, packed with sodium, too fatty or filled with stabilizers and additives of all kinds, which are related…

This salad will make you want to forget all those other salads before this one. A simple combination that makes fireworks. Like in the Ratatouille movie, when the rat melt cheese on the mushroom with the help of a lightning bolt… Some ingredients are just much better coupled and this is a good example. A melted goat cheese on figs pieces, walnuts, cherry tomatoes with a honey dressing and an extra balsamic cream top make it extra special. Where I live, close by the Pyrenees mountain chain, they do some great goat cheeses! Although we don’t get to see them eating cheese in many dishes, they prefer the cheese by itself, as a Tapa or mostly to start a meal, contrary to finish a meal like in France. They do such a varieties of cow, sheep and goat cheeses and often make a mix of all those to make a single cheese. I, on the…

Beetroot and apricot salad topped with fresh goat cheese and pistachios. The earthy beetroot is the perfect companion to the perfumed and sweet apricot, the goat cheese bring the salt element to the dish and the pistachios the crunch. In other word… a perfectly balanced and delicious salad. My mom showed me that recipe, the original was with raspberries and beets and I remembered at first being skeptical with the whole mix of goat cheese, beets, raspberries… But once you try it, you’ll make this salad for the rest of your life, guaranteed! Like in most salads… it’s fairly simple to make. I like to slice with the mandoline thick slices of beets and add them to the bottom of a big plate, than you build the rest of the salad in the middle of it. We don’t eat only with our mouth…nose… but also the eyes. As for the goat cheese…oh…

Caesar Salad with Chicken and Caperberries is an healthier version from the traditional one. It doesn’t contain as much sauce, nor too much olive oil. Also, I’ve cut on the bacon bits, back in Canada, some people could crucify me for this…sorry. And finally, I took off the anchovies, which I learned while researching for the recipe, was not in the original Caesar Salad. Actually the creator, Caesar Cardini, an Italian restaurateur living in San Diego and also working in Mexico, apparently didn’t like anchovies at all. So, this time, I’ve exchanged all those “side” ingredients and add caperberries instead.  It contrast perfectly the creamy dressing and give the salad that extra touch of savory it needs, without saying… it’s way healthier than bacon… Another fact about Caesar Salad, which I didn’t know is, that the original recipe contains Worcestershire sauce. Surprising to learn that; an Italian living in the USA, working in Mexico, add a British ingredient…

A vinegar based coleslaw with caraway seeds and a tad of apple juice to sweeten things up, loads of carrots and a secret ingredient the Germans use; caraway seeds! It’s gonna become your favorite coleslaw, plus ultra healthy without all that mayo. Vinegar coleslaw is the first salad I’ve ever loved and it’s so healthy, when no mayonnaise is used… As a child, back in Canada, I used to go to this popular roasting chicken place called St-Hubert. When ordering, they would always ask you;” coleslaw creamy or traditional?” I would always take the “traditional one” which is the one i tried to imitate in this recipe. The German’s secret: caraway seeds Then I’ve met my husband, a guy from Munich, Germany. Also, a place where they do spectacular coleslaws or “krautsalad”, as they call it. They make a few variations, for example, sometimes they add few caraway seeds, chives and/or bacon…

Gravlax on a spinach salad is such a good mix! The crunchy texture of the spinach goes perfectly with the tender salmon and the sweet mustard dressing. If you do a Gravlax and you have leftovers and would like to eat it a different way maybe, try this salad. This salmon is made with a simple dry marinade of equal parts salt and sugar with an extra dill, nothing more… There are many recipes out there, some add gin, lemon zest etc… you decide of the extras you’d like. The dish was made by fishermen from the Middle age, in the northern part of Europe. They used to salt the salmon, they freshly caught, and then ditch them in the sand, by the sea, to ferment. Nowadays, we simply brine the salmon. Just need to plan it ahead, because it takes a minimum of 24 hours to marinate. I usually do it…

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