Some of you asked for the recipes; I'm happy to give out recipes. I just don't think much of what we do in the kitchen is a secret or should be a secret. If I find a recipe or make a recipe that I like, a little bell goes off in my heart every time you use it and the people in your life like it. When I menu for lunch, I usually go with salads. And when the entrees are salads, I go with a chicken, a vegetable and a fruit. They provide a nice range of choice for people and usually provide a nice range of color on the table, too. For this event, I used chicken, tomatoes and apples. The apple salad here is a curve but it is a recipe that I just love and is highly unique. Goes with almost anything and keeps nicely in the refrigerator afterward. The tomato salad is always a big hit and evaporates. Just can't make enough of those killer tomatoes. And the chicken salad is a signature dish here at Bellemaison. I can make it with the flu, in my sleep, with jet lag, under any circumstance and it always pleases and comforts everyone in the house.
Lemon Waldorf Salad
from The Junior League of Louisville CORDONBLUEGRASS
I am quite select about the apples, making certain they are crunchy and crisp and not mushy as some late winter apples can be. Of course, you must use Washington State apples. I also have been know to grill chicken and hot off the grill, chop it up and fold it in to this salad. mmmmm. mmmmm.
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 T sugar
1 T milk
1 tsp grated lemon rind
3 Granny Smith or tart apples
1 cup diced celery
1/2 cup toasted broken pecans
2 T lemon juice
1/2 pound seedless grapes
Stir together mayonnaise, sugar, milk and lemon rind.
Cover and chill.
Peel, core and chop apples.
Toss together apples, celery, pecans, lemon juice, and grapes.
Cover and chill.
Just before serving, toss dressing and fruit together.
from the Junior League of Memphis HEART AND SOUL
I usually serve this as a salad that makes a nice accompaniment for chicken or beef and a nice complement for fruit. I also prepare angel hair pasta, then season, oil and chill the pasta and serve the tomatoes over the top, as a cold entree. Pass the bowl of grated reggiano and Bob's your uncle .
5 cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
6 slices lean bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
1/3 cup snipped fresh basil
2 T red wine vinegar
2 t sugar
1/2 t dry mustard
1 sm clove garlic, minced
s & p to taste
4 T extra virgin olive oil
fresh basil springs
In a non-reactive bowl, toss together tomatoes, bacon and basil.
In another bowl, combine vinegar, sugar dry mustard, garlic, salt and pepper.
Add olive oil in a steady stream, whisking until blended.
Pour dressing over tomato mixture.
Garnish with additional fresh basil spring.
Serves 6 for salad.
The Chicken Salad of Bellemaison
I have made this salad for any and every occasion or time people have been at my house in the last 20 years. I take the time to make my own croutons which really amps up the result. I also do a hot Caesar version of this that's quite tasty. This is comfort food of the highest order.
2 C cooked, diced chicken
2 C diced celery
2 C croutons
1 C mayonnaise
1/2 C slivered almonds
2 T fresh lemon juice
2 t dehydrated onion
1/2 t salt
1/2 C sharp cheddar cheese
Heat over to 450 degrees.
Mix all ingredients but 1 cup croutons and cheese.
Heat 10 minutes.
Top with cheese and rest of croutons and heat until melted.
6 plain bagels
1/2 c butter
salt and pepper
Carefully diced bagels into crouton-size amounts and arrange on jelly roll pan.
Sprinkle with garlic powder.
Season with salt and pepper.
Drizzle with butter.
Bake in 400 degree oven for 8 minutes, then remove from oven and turn. Bake for 3 more minutes. Remove from oven and pour into cool dish.
The 'Kan EWA