Fab Food Friday Fotos: The Explosive Fourth of July “Salads, Salads, & More Salads” Food & Recipe Extravaganza
Posted By Vicki McClure Davidson on July 1, 2011
FOOD. GLORIOUS FOURTH OF JULY FOOD.
God bless America — Fourth of July is marked as America’s day of independence, a celebration of the birth of the greatest nation on Earth and the courage, determination, and wisdom demonstrated by our nation’s founding fathers.
It is our celebration of freedom.
For many Americans, the 4th of July is a day of family togetherness, fireworks displays, and patriotic activities — this weekend will be enjoyed across the nation with poolside horse-playing, barbecues, camping, boating, fishing, patriotism-inspired concerts in the park, and of course, dealing with the July summer heat.
Few dishes are as light, refreshing, and thrift-minded as a chilled salad eaten during a summer weekend of celebration.
So this is a pull-out-all-the-stops, fireworks-exploding “salads only” compilation of beautiful, mouth-watering salad dishes and inexpensive, nutritious salad recipes. Happy birthday, America!
Salads, salads, and more salads — a virtual vegan’s paradise, although there are a number of salads with meats included as well.
When they’re available, recipes and recipe links accompany select “Fab Food Friday Fotos,” with a guarantee that at least one frugal-minded recipe will always be included.
Photo provided courtesy of themessychef.net.
Photographer and food blogger The Messy Chef (known to her friends as Sara) wrote this about her potato salad:
This could quite possibly be the best potato salad you have ever tried (and easiest!). To see this recipe and more, go to www.themessychef.net.
For the Vietnamese Salad with Grilled Tofu recipe, check out photographer/cook Craig Dugas’s food blog, Inspired Eats. Overview from Craig:
This chilled salad makes for a wonderful summertime dish. It would make a great side to bring along to a picnic or party and isn’t nearly as heavy as many traditional oil-based salads (although I’m not convinced it couldn’t use a bit of oil in the dressing).
While this colorful taco salad creation was created for the Super Bowl, it would be an excellent dish to serve at a Fourth of July gathering. Photographer/cook Maggie Hoffman provided the recipe, which is also posted at Pithy and Cleaver:
Perfect for the Super Bowl! Recipe and more here at Pithy and Cleaver.
Turkey Taco Salad
For the dressing:
* 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
* Juice of one lime
* Juice of 1/2 small orange
* 2 tablespoons olive oil
* 1/2 teaspoon cumin
For the meat:
* Cooking oil
* 1 onion, diced
* 2 cloves garlic, smashed and diced
* 1 poblano pepper, cut in 1″ chunks
* 1/2 lb ground turkey, preferably organic
* 1-1/2 teaspoons chili powder blend
* 1 teaspoon cumin
* 1 teaspoon oregano
* 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
* 1 chipotle (from a can with adobo sauce), diced
* 1 teaspoon adobo sauce
* 1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
* 2 tablespoons chicken broth
For the salad:
* 1 head escarole
* 1 red pepper
* 2 scallions
* 2 baby cucumbers
* 1 tomato
* 6 ounces cheddar cheese
* 1 ripe avocado
* 1 cup corn chips, crushed slightly
lime wedges, salsa, hot sauce, additional chips, additional cheese, pickled jalapenos, sliced black olives
Mix the dressing ingredients and set aside. In a large saute pan, heat cooking oil over medium-low and saute onion and garlic until translucent. Add poblano pepper and turkey and let cook a few minutes. Stir in chili powder, cumin, oregano, paprika, chipotle, and adobo sauce and mix thoroughly. Turn heat down slightly and add beans and chicken broth. Let cook while you prepare the rest of the salad.
Remove outer leaves of escarole if tough and discard. Wash escarole and tear into smaller pieces, then place in a large salad bowl. Slice red pepper into thin strips and add to salad bowl. Slice scallions thinly and add. Dice cucumbers and tomato and add to salad. Grate cheese and have ready.
When turkey is cooked through, slice avocado. Add one quarter of it to the dressing and mash until dressing is creamy. Add the rest of the avocado to the salad, then the chips, then toss with the dressing until everything is coated.
Add the warmed meat mixture to the tossed salad and top with cheese. Toss to mix and serve immediately, with garnishes to choose from.
Easy to make, and children of all ages should devour this pizza pasta salad. From JennyMac’s Lipsmack blog — check the site out for more recipes… her Yukon Gold Breakfast Hash looks cheesy-bacony-fabulous:
Pizza Pasta Salad
* Half a box of your favorite spiral pasta
* 6 Tbsp. oil
* 1/3 c. grated Parmesan cheese
* 1/4 c red wine vinegar
* 1 tsp. oregano
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
* 1/2 tsp. pepper
* 1 c. halved cherry/grape tomatoes
* 1 c. cubed cheddar cheese
* 1 c. cubed mozzarella cheese
* 1/2 c. green onions (I used red onion slices- seemed more ‘pizza-like’)
* 1/2 c. pepperoni
* Optional – I also added fresh chopped basil, sliced black olives, and mushrooms!
Cook pasta. In a jar with a tight lid – combine oil, Parmesan, vinegar, oregano, salt, garlic and pepper. Shake well. Drain pasta.
In a large bowl, combine rest of ingredients. Add pasta and dressing. Toss, cover and chill for 1 hour.
Photographer/cook cchen listed the ingredients for this French-inspired salad:
Tuna salad, nicoise olives, bibb lettuce & garlic aioli garnished with sliced egg and radishes.
This recipe for Arugula, White Bean, & Tuna Salad is also posted at Talk of Tomatoes blog — for another healthful, refreshing salad, check out blog mistress Janelle’s recipe for feta beet salad with fig sherry vinaigrette. She wrote this about her arugula, white bean, and tuna salad:
This salad is a preferable choice for lunch. And the beans and tuna give it enough ‘meat’ to keep your belly happy for hours (no need for mid afternoon lunching to fill the watery-lettuce void). The white beans are classic Italian fare (white or cannellini beans), as is the tuna, arugula and fabulous olive oil.
Arugula, White Bean and Tuna Salad
* White beans (from a can works)
* Tuna fish (packed in olive oil, then drained)
* Olive oil, to taste
* Kosher salt and coarse pepper (KS&CP)
A few twists:
I like to add shaved Parmesan, I think the salty bite is brilliant against the tangy arugula and tuna.
We use our best olive oil, since it goes straight from the bottle to our mouths (we use our second class olive oil for cooking).
We differ in opinion on this, while my husband skips the balsamic, sometimes I add a squirt of reduced balsamic vinegar.
You could add: really seasonal, perfectly ripened cherry or baby Roma tomatoes.
Lots of freshly ground pepper is key, the more the better.
Easy, refreshing, and tasty salad with cranberries, apples, walnuts, turkey, and bleu cheese — click here to visit On The Fly Recipes blog for the recipe.
Photographer/cook Heidi Hoopes provided these instructions for making the salad:
This is a salad we (Jan and I) like making: spinach, strawberries, bacon, caramelized pecans, and a balsamic dressing. If you like going crazy, you can add bleu cheese or feta.
* 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
* 1/4 cup white sugar (or less)
* 1/4 cup olive oil
* 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar (or rice or wine vinegar if you prefer)
* 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Either shake together or slowly whisk the oil into the remaining ingredients.
Melt 1 T. butter in a skillet. When bubbly, add 1 T. brown sugar, and 1/2 c. pecans. Stir for a couple minutes then spread out on waxed paper until cool.
Photographer/cook Ned Raggett shared his method for creating this easy salad:
Cucumber and lemon salad
Thanks to a recipe from my coworker Kate. Peel and dice two lemons and toss with salt, slice two cucumbers thinly and layer them, then slice and layer a sweet onion. Add the lemons, then mix some olive oil with pepper and oregano and spoon over the salad.
Bread and a chardonnay finish it off.
Photographer/cook ozmanfan made this deli-style macaroni from a recipe posted at Rachel Rappaport’s Coconut & Lime food blog, but used conchiglioni (conch shell-shaped) pasta instead of regular macaroni:
Deli-Style Macaroni Salad
* 3/4 cup mayonnaise
* 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
* 2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
* 2 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
* 1 medium onion, diced
* 2 stalks celery, diced
* 2 carrots, grated
* 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
* White pepper
* 16 oz cooked macaroni
In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise, celery seed, vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt and pepper. In a large bowl, stir together the onion, celery, carrot, and macaroni.
Refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving, but overnight is best.
When you have a chance, visit Coconut & Lime for more innovative recipes and food ideas — you’ll drool over Rachel’s Nutella Cheesecake Squares, White and Green Asparagus Tortellini Salad, and Grilled Pork & Peppers Tacos.
This greens and citrus salad recipe calls for mustard greens and blood oranges, among other fresh ingredients — for the full recipe, pop over to Dishing Up Delights food blog.
Always a fun food blog to peruse, here’s part of Cooking with Corey’s write-up and the full recipe for Fennel-Potato Salad.
If you’ve not ever read this food blog, check it out. I’ve got my eye on her recipes for Southwestern Black Bean Salsa Tortilla Wrap and her Spicy Turkey Burgers with Roasted Red Pepper Salsa & Sweet Pickle Relish:
Incidentally, this recipe has only a very small amount of dairy in it, and at that, it’s Greek yoghurt, which apparently doesn’t seem to bother lactose-intolerant individuals as much or even at all, primarily because it contains a lot less lactose than regular yoghurt &/or many other milk-based products. Also, here’s also no actual mayo in this dish, so that should make my mom very happy as well. 😉 (We didn’t grow up eating mayo.)
Another cool twist is that fennel is used instead of celery, for a crisper and much more refreshing taste. After all, fennel and potatoes go together like Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. 🙂
So, get ready for some fennel-potato salad to waltz off your plate and then gleefully cha-cha-cha right into your stomach. 😀
* 8 c. water
* 1/2 tsp. table salt (for seasoning the water)
* 2 lbs. Yukon Gold or red-skinned potatoes*, unpeeled & well-scrubbed (about 6-7 small potatoes, 2 cubic inches)
* 2 large hard-boiled eggs,** peeled (make in advance)
* 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
* 1/4 c. nonfat plain Greek yoghurt
* 1/2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
* 2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
* 1/4 c. fresh dill (fronds only), finely chopped
* 2 Tbsp. fresh Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
* 1/2 tsp. fennel seeds
* 1/2 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
* 1/2 c. fennel bulb, diced
* 1/2 c. red onion, peeled and chopped (about 1/2 small onion)
* 1/4 c. cornichons, finely diced (these are the sour mini pickles, not the sweet kind, i.e., gherkins)
* 1/3 c. scallions, (white and green parts), sliced crosswise into 1/4″ rounds (about 2 large scallions)
* 1 Tbsp. drained capers, soaked in 1/4 c. water for 10 minutes and then drained
Bring 8 c. lightly salted water to a rolling boil in a large (4-6 qt.) pot. Then gingerly place the potatoes into the pot of boiling water. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover tightly with lid, and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until the potatoes are almost tender when pierced with a knife. Drain into a heat-proof colander, then transfer potatoes back into the pot, and let them cool for at least 15 minutes. Set aside.
Meanwhile, prepare the dressing: Add hard-boiled eggs, Dijon mustard, Greek yoghurt, olive oil, and lemon juice to a blender (or food processor), cover, and pulse until smooth and emulsified. (Or, if you prefer a chunkier consistency, mash the hard-boiled eggs into oblivion in a large bowl, and then whisk together the Dijon mustard, Greek yoghurt, olive oil, and lemon juice.) Next, pour dressing into large bowl, and whisk in dill, parsley, fennel seeds, and black pepper. Next, add the fennel, red onion, cornichons, scallions, and capers, and gently combine. Set aside. This will allow the solid ingredients some time to marinate in the dressing while you’re waiting for the potatoes to cool.
When the potatoes are cool enough to handle but still warm, dice them into small, rough chunks while they’re still in the pot. Then transfer the potatoes into the large bowl containing the dressing. Toss well, cover, and refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to meld. Serve cold or at room temperature.
Yield: 6-8 servings.
Chef’s Notes: *I like to leave the potato peels intact when adding the potatoes to the salad — for added color, flavor, texture, and nutrients — but whether or not you’d like to do this is, of course, up to you.
The recipe for photographer/cook eliza’s Florentine Pasta Salad with Lemon is posted at Notes from My Food Diary. On the same post is her recipe and photos for Tuscan-Style Pizza Pockets with Beans and Basil.
Photographer luna715 described this luscious pistachio salad:
Pistachio Delight – Texas Kitchen brand, I believe. I found this in the potato/macaroni salad section at Kroger and decided to try it. Glad I did because YUM! It’s pistachio pudding, bits of pistachio nuts, bits of pineapple, and mini marshmallows. I may have tasted coconut in there too, possibly. Not sure… anyway it’s like a whip, very light and fluffy. Thumbs up!
Photographer/cook Aimee Ray provided the recipe for this unusual Japanese-style noodle salad, which is also posted on her upbeat arts and crafts blog, Little Dear Tracks:
We do love a good salad at our house and this is one of my faves. It’s called Japanese salad, and although I don’t know how Japanese it actually is, it is more fun to eat with chopsticks. 😉
My mom used to make this when I was growing up with chicken but being a vegetarian now, the chicken is right out. I’ve worked up my own version and I think it’s just right. Also, I don’t always measure things, so if there’s no amount, just add to taste or whatever you think looks good. Instinct is an important part of cooking! 😀
* 1 small head of cabbage
* 1 small bunch of green onions
* Sesame Seeds
* Slivered Almonds
* 1 package crushed ramen noodles
(heat in a small saucepan and cool)
* 2 T sugar
* 1/2 cup oil (sesame or olive work well)
* 3 T apple cider vinegar
* 3 T soy sauce
Add to taste:
* onion powder
* garlic powder
* ginger celery seed
* 1 bay leaf
Mix salad ingredients and then mix in dressing once it is cool. I usually make this the day before and then store it in the refrigerator so the noodles can soften a bit. Yummy! We eat a whole batch of this in a day. (two of us.) heheh.
This recipe for warm lentil salad with beets from photographer/cook olgusz is also posted on VegWeb:
Warm Lentil Salad with Baby Beets
Ingredients (use vegan versions):
* 1 cup French lentils (the blue-ish ones)
* 3 cups water
* 1 bay leaf
* 8-10 fresh baby beets
* 1/2 red onion, finely sliced
* 1/2 cup Italian parsley, chopped
* 3 tablespoons olive oil
* 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
* 2 tablespoons lemon juice
* 1 clove garlic, minced
* 1/2 cup baby beet leaves, chopped
* Salt and pepper, to taste
Bring lentils, water and bay leaf to a boil, then simmer until tender (the ones I used didn’t need pre-soaking). Drain and remove the bay leaf. Trim the baby beets to leave 2 inches of stems and the roots. Bring to boil and simmer until tender. Drain, top and tail and remove the skin, then slice.
Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, mustard and garlic. Pour over the warm lentils and toss.
In a salad bowl, toss the dressed lentils with the baby beets, onion, parsley and beet leaves. Pepper and salt, to taste.
The beets came from my garden and were really nice and sweet.
Source of recipe: Inspiration for this recipe came from the back of a bag of lentils.
Makes: 3, Preparation time: 10 minutes, Cooking time: 25 minutes
I’ve not ever had Cape gooseberries — this photo and recipe provided by photographer/cook djwtwo looks enticing:
We’ve started getting Cape gooseberries (sometimes called ground cherries or “husk tomatoes”; they look like small tomatillos) in our farm share this summer, along with a pint or so of different cherry, pear, and other small tomatoes. This is one of my favorite things to do with them: a chili-spiced salad. The sweet-tart flavor of the two fruits combine really well with a little bit of heat.
Take roughly equal portions of small tomatoes and gooseberries (with cherry tomatoes, this is about 2 gooseberries per tomato), remove the stems from the tomatoes and the husks from the gooseberries, and halve them all.
Add one small red or white onion, thinly sliced, a pinch of salt, a little drizzle of good olive oil, a splash of sherry vinegar, and half a teaspoon of chili powder (I use my own homemade stuff, but use what you like). Toss to combine. Serve immediately, maybe with some crusty bread and a little cheese.
Photographer/cook Inspired RD (who is also food reviewer blogger/personal trainer/mom Alysa) provides the Food Network link to this beautiful Brussels Sprout-Leaf Salad and wrote this commentary below:
I love crispy crunchy roasted Brussels sprouts, but I also enjoy trying new recipes. So last week when Brussels sprouts were in our Bountiful Basket once again, I went searching online and found a recipe from Giada at Home on the Food Network. You can see the written recipe here and a video of how to make the salad here.
The only thing I did differently from the original recipe was to use sliced raw almonds instead of toasted almonds. The salad turned out beautifully. It was very simple and fresh. I love the simpleness of the dressing, I will be using it again in the future on other salads. The flavor of the Brussels sprout leaves was nice and mild from the blanching and paired well with the arugula and endive. I highly recommend this recipe!
Alysa’s crafts and food blog also has a delightful ongoing feature about kids helping Mom with cooking — here’s the link to one post that’s full of charming kids-in-the-kitchen photos, plus an easy recipe and a great idea for mothers and children to concoct together during summer vacation: The Kids Cook Monday – fANNEtastic granola bars
I just love the photo composition here — the red-beribboned hat in the background is a nice touch of whimsy. Whimsy is always good.
Photographer/cook Ruby Slippers in Italy wrote:
If you are what you eat, then I don’t mind being a pasta salad with the flavors of spring and summer combined.
Photographer/cook/food blogger Mariam Wilcox has provided the easy instructions for making this watermelon fruit salad on her food blog Sometimes I “Veg.” In the same post, she has posted several fab photos of an assortment of glassware, plates, and bowls she scooped up at Goodwill to enliven her food photographs. Some are real beauties — I’d love to have her rainbow bowl pictured on the site.
Elana’s Pantry always has the most tantalizing photos of organic, gluten-free food and recipes — the recipe for this peach arugula salad is no exception. Also check out her recipe for Asparagus Basil Salad.
From instructions and nutritional information on making these pepper cup salads, click here.
So light and refreshing, I want to dive right in — photographer/cook Steven Depolo wrote:
Pure Joy – My mom’s famous ambrosia salad is such a special treat on the holidays.
* 2 cans pineapple chunks, drained
* 2 cans mandarin oranges, drained
* 2 jars maraschino cherries, drained
* 1 can coconut flakes
* 1/2 bag mini marshmallows
* 4 oz. sour cream
* 16 oz. Cool Whip
Combine sour cream and Cool Whip. Fold in all other ingredients. Chill covered for at least 2 hours.
Nostalgia lane… A vintage 1953 ad with a Chicken Crown Soufflé Salad recipe, made with Jell-O and Hellman's or Best Foods mayonnaise — double-click the image to enlarge if you’re interested in reading the recipe. This advert came out during the Jell-O/mayo salad craze of the 1950s and ’60s, and many a church potluck and family dinner featured chilled, dessert-like salads with light meats similar to this one.
Food photos selected and posted are credited and have Creative Commons-licensed content with some rights reserved for noncommercial purposes, unless otherwise noted.
Past three months of Fab Food Friday Fotos posts:
Broccoli & Bleu Cheese Soup, Chilli Crab Spaghetti, Apricot Rugelach, Grilled Eggplant, Kale Salad & Peanut Dressing, Strawberry Trifle, Buttermilk Cornmeal Waffles, Pasta, Candied Horseradish, Recipes, & More