Tag Archives: Spring

Pea Salad with Bacon & Creamy Ranch

Long weekends equal lots of fun and food with family and friends! At least it does in my neighborhood, if you can call it a neighborhood out here in the sticks.  We had two full, very busy, yet very fun days with family friends as we wave goodbye to summer and fit in at least one more (or two more in this case) cookout.

And out here in the sticks, we know how to have fun! Labor Day weekend marking not just goodbye to Summer, but also bringing out the first of many bonfires/chimney log fires of the new Fall season coming.

Of course the adults aren’t the only ones having fun. My little guy, Joe, had an absolute blast at his very first “neighborhood” party. If you are new here and don’t know, my son Joe is Autistic and would have never handled this much activity (aka a cookout/party) without getting overloaded and ending in a melt down. So, this is his first very successful party. He had a blast on the playground at our friend’s house, and lasted as long as I did! The score: Mom 1 vs. Melt Downs 0. Awww yea!!! Hang on a sec, I need to victory dance! Of course a lot of thanks goes to his Grandma. She kept up with him and enjoyed herself too. It was a good day!

The really cool fires and the playgrounds aren’t the only thing that bring us folks out here in the sticks together. Oh no, it’s the food! Isn’t it always the food? Our potluck parties (or pitch-ins as the native Hoosiers like to call them) are always incredible! There’s always so much food! Way more than I can justify eating in one sitting. I want to, I just can’t justify it. 😂 Seriously, we had pork loin, ribs, lamb chops, sausages, and of course hot dogs and burgers! My mother in law brought her amazing mac & cheese, and I really need to wiggle that recipe out of her so I can share it with all of you. There was so much more food than what I just listed, including this Pea Salad with Bacon & Creamy Ranch.

This salad is incredible. It’s incredibly easy, incredibly delicious, it has incredible tasty bacon. See? Incredible! It comes together super fast. Although you can substitute real bacon bits for the bacon in this salad if you’re pressed for time, but I seriously recommend cooking bacon and crumbling it. I cook my bacon on a sheet pan in the oven and clean up is a breeze! Just heat the oven to 400 degrees, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, put your bacon on there and bake it for about 15-20 minutes or until it’s crisp. Then put it on a paper towel lined plate and let it cool before crumbling. Clean up?! What clean up?!

I hope you all get a chance to enjoy this salad as much as I enjoyed sharing it with my friends and family.

Print Recipe
Pea Salad with Bacon & Creamy Ranch Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Drain peas in a colander, if necessary. Mine had a little liquid from being frozen, but not much. We don't want that liquid.
  2. In a large bowl add peas, cheese, onion, sunflower kernels, crumbled bacon and ranch dressing. Toss gently to coat.
  3. Add salt & pepper to taste, and toss gently one more time to mix it in.
  4. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before serving.
Recipe Notes

Adapted from Dinner Then Dessert

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Fabulous Greek Burgers with Feta and Tzatziki Sauce – #SundaySupper

Sunday Supper and I are back, and this time we want to gather around the picnic table. That’s right, we are bringing you some awesome ideas for your Labor Day cookout. Whether you choose to spend it on the lack, in a friend’s backyard, or in your own backyard, you won’t want to miss these recipes. So, take the day off, gather your friends and family, choose your picnic spot, and celebrate the last hurrah before Fall!

What I’ve chosen to bring to this Sunday Supper table for Labor Day, is a nice big juicy burger. I love burgers, and because I love them so much, I prefer to make them at home rather than eat them out at a fast food place. The quality is so much better, and nearly the fat and calories you’ll consume at your local fast food joint. Another plus side to making them at home, you discover how versatile burgers can be! You see, this isn’t just any burger. This, my friends, is a Fabulous Greek Burger with Feta and Tzatziki Sauce, and it’s oh so easy, so delicious, and truly fabulous.  You’re gonna love it!

So lets start with the Tzatziki sauce. If you’ve never had Greek food, and you have no clue what in the world this sauce is, it’s just a cucumber/yogurt sauce, to put it simply. Seriously though, if you’ve never had this sauce, it’s gonna blow your mind when you try it. I very slightly adapted this sauce from one of my favorite blogs, Recipe Runner. To make the sauce, take your peeled and diced up English cucumber, non-fat plain Greek  yogurt, a little lemon juice, dill, pressed garlic, salt and pepper and combine that together. Then I put it in a blender, pulsed a few times until smooth. Cover, and refrigerate until you’re ready for it. Nice little make-ahead dealy there.  😉

For your burgers, you’ll want an extra large bowl so you have room to work with.  In this large bowl, mix your ground beef, crumbled fetta, red onion, garlic and hamburger seasoning. The best tool for mixing it up real good, your good clean hands. Once it’s all combined, I separate it out evenly into 6 large meatballs.

Press and shape your large meatballs into hamburger patties. I take my meatball that’s nice and packed tight, put it between wax paper, and smoosh it. Then peel the paper back, and shape the sides, patting out as needed. Then I line a baking sheet with wax paper and place my patties on that so that it’s ready for and easy for the Hubster to take them out the grill. My work is done here! It’s all on him now. 😆

And ladies & gentlemen, this is one of the reasons I love that man so much. Perfectly grilled, fabulous, juicy burgers and toasted buns. To assemble, just slather the bottom bun with that beautiful, mind-blowing Tzatziki sauce, top that with a beautifully grilled burger that’s loaded with feta and goodness, add your tomato slice, and top with baby spinach leaves, and then your top bun. Now finally, sit back, relax, and enjoy this burger, which happens to be our new favorite. Yes, even the kids!

Need something to go with it? Got ya covered! Serve this yummy burger up with a side of my Greek Pasta Salad. Perfect accompaniment! Have a safe and fun Labor Day folks! I hope you have found some inspiration for your own BBQ.

Labor Day Menu Ideas

Scrumptious Labor Day Sides and Starters

Delicious Labor Day Entrees

Luscious Labor Day Desserts

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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Fabulous Greek Burgers with Feta and Tzatziki Sauce Yum
Recipe by: Christine Titus
Cuisine Greek
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Cuisine Greek
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. SAUCE:
  2. Peel and dice cucumber. In a medium bowl, whisk remaining ingredients until well combined. Fold in the cucumber. Transfer mixture to a blender or food processor and pulse a few times until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings to your liking. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  3. BURGERS:
  4. In a large bowl, mix all burger ingredients except for buns, spinach and tomatoes.
  5. Shape into 6 patties, and place patties on the grill over medium heat.Cover and cook 5-8 minutes, turning once, until a meat thermometer reads 160 when inserted in the center of the patties.
  6. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of sauce on the bottom half of each bun. Top with a burger, tomato and spinach. Cover with top buns and enjoy!
Recipe Notes

Sauce slightly adapted from reciperunner.com

Burgers adapted from Betty Crocker

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Greek Pasta Salad

It’s still August, Summer isn’t over yet! It’s still hotter n’ all get out around here in Southern Indiana, and in my mind, Summer isn’t over until the last cookout (aka Labor Day)! However, I don’t know about you, but we grill all year around here. Rain, sunshine, snow and sleet 😂. There’s a reason we had a covered deck built.  What we grill during those colder months are different than what we grill in the warmer months though. There aren’t any hamburgers, or ribs, or corn on the cob, or noodle salads. Usually, we are grilling things like steak and pork chops, and the grilling is a lot rare of an occurrence than in the warmer months too.

For now though, it’s still Summer! So lets get the barbecue on, because I’ve got a wonderful pasta salad to go with whatever you are grilling, and it makes a lot so it’s perfect for a cookout with friends and family. What’s better than hanging out friends and family and sharing awesome food?! Nothing, that’s what.

Before I show you how to make this lovely, easy, and so flavorful salad, a big thanks goes out to Katya over at Little Broken for the amazing Greek Vinaigrette that I use in this salad.

You want to start by getting a big pot of water to a boil, and then adding your pasta. Cook the pasta according to the package directions and then drain and run under cold water to cool. While that’s going on, you can prep your veggies.

Once you have everything chopped up, toss your veggies, olives and feta together in a very large bowl.  Add the cooled, cooked pasta, and toss together.

Then make a batch of the dressing, which consists of olive oil, red wine vinegar, pressed garlic, lemon juice, oregano, salt and pepper. Pour that over the salad, and toss to coat completely. It is now ready for the fridge. Cover your salad and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Because pasta likes to soak up dressings like this one while it sits, I make a second batch of the dressing and have it ready in the fridge. Then when it comes time to serve, I pour my reserved dressing over the salad, and toss again to coat. Delicious!

Print Recipe
Greek Pasta Salad Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Salads
Cuisine Greek
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Salads
Cuisine Greek
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and add pasta. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and run under cold water to cool; set aside.
  2. While pasta is cooking, prep vegetables. Toss onion, cucumber, tomatoes, olives and feta together in a very large bowl. Add cooked pasta, toss together and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the vinaigrette ingredients. Pour over pasta mixture, and toss well to coat. Cover and refrigerate salad for at least 2 hours before serving.
  4. In another bowl, or a mason jar, combine all of the vinaigrette ingredients again. Whisk to combine well, or put lid on jar and shake to combine. Cover and place in the refrigerator until ready to serve the salad. Just before serving, shake or whisk reserved dressing, and pour over pasta salad. Toss to coat, and serve.
Recipe Notes

I make a reserved batch of the vinaigrette, because the pasta tends to soak up a lot of the dressing as it sits. Adding additional dressing before serving will make sure your salad isn't dry, and of course bring extra fresh flavor.

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Delicious Ranch Potato Salad

The weather here is just perfect. A beautiful 78 degrees which is perfect for me! Not too hot, not too cold. It’s wonderful, and it’s got me wanting to gather up the clan, and go to a park for a picnic. I don’t know about you, but I love picnics. Ever since I was a kid, my favorite picnic food was potato salad. As far as I’m concerned, you can’t have a picnic without potato salad! It just wouldn’t be right. It also wouldn’t be right to make the same old potato salad over and over again either. I don’t know about you folks, but I like variety. I get bored with the same ol’ thing.

So lets switch it up! I’ve created this Delicious Ranch Potato Salad, and I served it at a potluck cookout very recently. It was a huge hit with my family and friends, and I know it will be with you and your family too. Like most potato salads, this one is super easy. You can even make it a day ahead of time.

First you want to get your potatoes cut up and into the pot of salted water, get that boiling. While those are cooking, take the rest of your ingredients and combine them in a large bowl. I like to use my giant Pyrex glass bowl for almost all of my salads. I like the extra tossing room.

Once your potatoes have cooked and are fork tender, which will only take about 8-12 minutes, you’ll want to drain them well. Then add them to your dressing mixture in your giant bowl. Toss it all together, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. I use red potatoes in this recipe. I prefer to use a waxy potato in potato salads like red potatoes, fingerling potatoes are new potatoes. The waxy potatoes hold up much better, where as starchy ones like russet potatoes tend to fall apart too easily, and turn your salad into mush. Ew…

 

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Delicious Ranch Potato Salad Yum
Recipe by: Christine Titus
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Clean and cut potatoes into chunks, then place in a large pot with salted water to cover potatoes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to keep it at a gentle boil and let cook until potatoes are fork tender,, about 8-12 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, combine all other ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Once potatoes are done, drain well, and add to the dressing mixture and toss to thoroughly combine all ingredients. Place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours to let flavors mingle and chill.
Recipe Notes

You can make this salad a day ahead of time, just keep covered in the refrigerator. Light ranch dressing may be substituted for regular to save a few calories.

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Rodeo Steak Sandwiches – #SundaySupper

This recipe I am bringing you today just screams “manly”! Doesn’t it? Rodeo, Steak, Sandwich. All three of those are manly food words. Especially steak. What’s more manly than steak?! This sandwich is sure to make your cowboys hoot & holler in delight. The cowgirls are gonna love it too. This recipe is quite simple, yet absolutely delicious! So round ’em up! It’s time for some grub!

Before we get started, I want to say thank you to our gracious #SundaySupper host Cindy Kerschner of Cindy’s Recipes and Writings. She’s worked hard to make this event possible and I appreciate her time so much.

For this recipe, I chose to use a boneless top round steak, but you can use pretty much any cut of beef you want. Flank Steak, London Broil, maybe even a brisket. But folks, the most important part of choosing your cut of beef, is make sure you grab Certified Angus Beef® brand. Oh man, I can not tell you how delicious and fresh their beef is. Absolutely perfect for this sandwich.

See that? Now that is a beautiful thing. Thank you Certified Angus Beef® brand, for this beautiful product. Lets just admire it for a minute longer…. 😆. I can’t help it, folks. I am totally a carnivorous person. Ok but seriously, this really is a beauty, but folks you gotta season it. As you can see here, it doesn’t come seasoned, so please, be nice to it and give it some seasoning. Grab your Montreal Steak Seasoning, shake that all over front and back, don’t be shy. Then just kinda rub it in. Give the meat a nice massage, they like that 😉. Then take your sea salt, and grind a some over the meat a couple of turns. The steak seasoning and salt are to taste, none of that is measured. I didn’t use a ton of salt, just a little bit. Set that aside, and we’ll start on the sauce.

This sauce, oh my gosh, this sauce!!! It is so crazy good. These sandwiches would not be what they are without this sauce, and it’s only three little ingredients! Can you believe that?! Just take your Mayo, which I use Mayo made with Olive Oil to cut down on some fat but you can use regular, or light. Do not use Miracle Whip because it will change the overall flavor. You don’t want to do that! Ok so take your Mayo, your horseradish mustard (I use the Walmart brand. It’s incredible!), and a bit of Worcestershire sauce and whisk it up in a bowl. Done. That’s it. Sauce is done. Refrigerate until you’re ready for it. It’s time to grill!

These beauties are happy! And so am I because I don’t have to do this part. I have my own personal Grill Master, which by the way, did an excellent job! These came out perfectly Medium-Rare which is how we like it. I should mention that you really only need about a pound or so for 6 sandwiches. We cooked extra and made some amazing nachos with the left overs. Would be great for quesadilla’s too. Or more sandwiches! I can’t get enough of these sandwiches!

So once you’ve grilled these to your desired doneness, you’re going to slice them real thin. Then butter the insides of your sandwich buns, and assemble your sandwiches. Start with Tomato, onion, sliced steak, and cheese. Then broil them for just a couple minutes until the cheese is melted. Spoon the sauce over the cheese, and top with the top half of your bun, and enjoy!

 

 

More Sunday Supper Cowboy Cooking Recipes

Beefed Up Main Dishes

Hearty Sandwiches

Sizzling Sides

Substantial Steaks

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement

Print Recipe
Rodeo Steak Sandwiches Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Sandwiches
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Course Sandwiches
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Season steak with steak seasoning and salt. Grill, covered, over medium-hot heat for about 6-10 minutes on each side. Time will vary depending on your cut and thickness of meat. Grill to desired doneness (for medium-rare, a meat thermometer should read 140°; medium 155°; well-done 165°.). Keep in mind it will continue to cook while it rests. Let it rest for about 5 minutes before slicing thinly.
  2. Spread butter on inside of buns. Place tomatoes, onion, sliced steak and cheese on bottom buns. Broil 5-6 inches from the heat for about 2-3 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the sauce ingredients together; spoon over cheese and replace bun top, and enjoy!
Recipe Notes

You can use almost any cut of beef in this recipe, for instance flank steak, london broil, or even a beef brisket. Use your favorite cut.

Recipe adapted from Taste of Home.

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Simple & Refreshing Fruit Salad

Well hello there folks! I gotta tell ya, this last week has been one to test my patience. So, like everyone I’m sure has done at least once in their life, I had all of my future blog content stored all in one place! Easier to find if it’s in one place right? Yea well, do yourselves a favor right now, just stop reading and take a minute, go back up all of your important files! No really, go ahead. I’ll wait…….

You’ll thank me later. See, what I did, was I accidentally deleted ALL of my future blog posts. All the pictures, and wonderful things I wanted to bring to you all, GONE in an instant! However, good news, I have pretty much recovered, and can start bringing you new yummies!! I mean, I’m still sad over losing all of that work, but hey… I bounced back, and I am here with a stupid easy fruit salad. It’s actually embarrassing to even call it a recipe, because, seriously…. You’ll see 😂.

I believe the point I’m trying to make with this salad, is that not all fruit salads need a dressing. These fruits come together so well, and tastes so refreshing with just their natural flavors. This is so simple and so versatile that you could throw this together at the last minute with little effort. Use your favorite fruits, add more fruits to it, make it what you want it to be.

As you can see here, I chose strawberries, mandarin oranges, and blueberries. These were the fruits I had on hand and this is often how I make this salad. I have used fresh mandarin oranges instead of the canned, but this particular time I used canned. Either one works just as well as the other. If you choose to throw in bananas, make sure you do that right before serving so they don’t get all brown and mushy.

It’s the perfect summer side dish to have with breakfast, lunch or dinner. It’s perfect for a potluck or cookout, and even as a snack. I hope you enjoy the simplicity of this delicious, refreshing salad as much as I do!

 

Print Recipe
Simple & Refreshing Fruit Salad Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, toss together strawberries, mandarin oranges, marshmallows and blueberries.
  2. Serve immediately, or chill until ready to serve.
Recipe Notes

This recipe is very versatile. Add your favorite fruits and berries, like blackberries, raspberries, bananas, pineapple, the list is endless!

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Simple Marinated Pork Chops

Have you fired up your grill yet? We pretty much BBQ all year round here at  Fort Awesome, but mostly in the Spring and Summer. It started getting warm here in Indiana long before it was supposed to, so we’ve been grilling up a storm! I absolutely love food off the grill. Kabobs, burgers, hot dogs, chicken, steak and lets not forget pork chops! Grilled pork chops are really the only way I enjoy them. Sure there’s times I’ve baked them and they turn out pretty good, but grilled is my favorite! Especially since I have a dedicated grill master and I don’t have to do it. I’m more of an indoor cook. I prepare the sides while he grills. I think it’s fair! Especially since he’s so darn good at it! So keeping with the grilling, I’ve got a great pork chop recipe for you. The marinade is so simple. It tastes fancy schmancy and has beautiful bold flavors, but it’s impressively easy and simple. As my husband says “simple is the way to go!” Amen to that! Today I give to you…..

This is so easy, you can sleep through most of the process. I mean literally sleep through most of the process. Here I’ll show you. First of all there are only 10 ingredients. Take the first 9 and whisk it up in a bowl.

Like so. My hanging pots and pans rack was not part of the marinade, by the way. That’s just me still learning how to take decent pictures and I’ve got quite the reflection there! 😂 Reminds me of one of my favorite quotes, “If you find it hard to laugh at yourself, I would be happy to do it for you.” – Groucho Marx. Anyway, to stay on topic and get to the part where you sleep through most of this recipe, just put your pork chops in a zip top bag, pour the marinade in, and seal it up. Turn it to coat.

Now place it in the fridge overnight and let it get all happy, while you…. go to bed! See? I told you that you get to sleep through most of this. When you’re ready to grill the next day, discard the marinade and grill your chops over medium heat, lid closed for about 4-5 minutes on each side, depending on how thick or thin your chops are. It’s always a good idea to have a meat thermometer handy. You’ll want these to be at at least 145 degrees. Then take them off the grill, let them rest for 5 minutes and enjoy!

A few of my favorite things I use in this recipe:

  • Pyrex bowls – They are inexpensive and don’t break as easily as other glass bowls, and believe me… I break a lot of dishes just by being my clumsy self LOL.
  • Oxo Good Grips Silicone Balloon Whisk – I love these! They’re durable and I can use them on teflon without scratching up my pan. I love using a whisk when making scrambled eggs. No more metal whisks for this girl.
Print Recipe
Marinated Pork Chops Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Grilling
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Grilling
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the first 9 ingredients; set aside.
  2. Add pork to a large resealable plastic zip top bag. Pour the marinade over the pork then seal bag and turn to coat and refrigerate overnight.
  3. Drain and discard marinade. Grill over medium heat, covered, for 4-5 minutes on each side or until a thermometer reads 145°. Let meat stand for 5 minutes before serving.
Recipe Notes

Slightly adapted from Taste of Home

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Lighter Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad

It’s Wednesday folks, and I don’t have a wine to share with you! 😱 I know, right? Imagine how I feel! Being wineless. It happens though, but don’t worry! I’ve got an amazing pasta salad recipe for you though! It’s that time of the year where people fire up the grill, host cookouts, or get invited to cookouts and outdoor potlucks. When the grill masters get that itch to fire up the grill, that’s when it’s the perfect time for pasta salads, potato salads, fruit salads, you name it cold salads to make their grand entrance! This one in particular will steal the spotlight, and if you’re still working hard  to eat healthier, like I promised myself I would, or if you just want to keep your lovely figure, don’t worry! This beautiful salad is all lightened up. It tastes absolutely sinful though. I found the original recipe over on Life in the Loft House, and thought to myself “how can I lighten this up so I can enjoy this without feeling guilty?” Well, here’s what I came up with! Come on in the kitchen and I’ll show you how simple this is. Another one of my favorite things about the salad. Simple!

So first, you’re going to cook your Rotini pasta until it’s al dente. That should take about 8 minutes or so. While that’s bubbling away on the stove, dump your mayo, sour cream and ranch dressing mix in a large bowl.

Then whisk it up real good until it’s all combined. When your pasta is finished cooking, drain that, and rinse it in cold water until cool. Set the pasta aside and cut your grape tomatoes in half.

Now add your pasta, bacon (which I used a pkg. of real bacon pieces), tomatoes, olives and cheese to the large bowl with the dressing.

Toss gently to combine. Then cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. I hope you enjoy this delicious, creamy pasta salad as much as we all did.

 

 

Print Recipe
Lighter Bacon Ranch Pasta Salad Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add rotini and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water until cool; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine mayonnaise, sour cream, dry ranch dressing mix, garlic powder and milk with a whisk until thoroughly combined. Add pasta, cooked bacon pieces, tomatoes, olives and cheese. Gently toss to completely combine everything together.
  3. Cover and chill in refrigerator at least 2 hours before serving.
Recipe Notes

If after chilling in the fridge, and your salad seems a little dry, just add a little milk and stir to combine to moisten it up.

Slightly adapted from Life in the Lofthouse

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Light and Refreshing Berry Fruit Salad + Kids In The Kitchen

Monday already!? What a busy weekend we had over here! The weekend just flew by. The weather here was so incredibly nice, you couldn’t resist firing up the grill, spending time with friends on Saturday and having a great potluck (or pitch-in as the native Hoosiers call it) with tons of delicious food, and then spending a beautiful Sunday with family, once again firing up that grill for a wonderful meal. We had soooo much food this weekend and I have sooo much to share with you. The first thing I must share with you though, is my favorite part of this weekend. My daughter spent some time looking at recipes (just like her mother) and decided she wanted to make something for me. She knows I absolutely LOOOOVE love love love fruit salad. Her and I share a deep love and passion for all things strawberry. So she came across a recipe over at Kristine’s Kitchen Blog. We modified it just very slightly, and came out with a brand new favorite fruit salad! My daughter was SO excited! She went to the store with her Grandma, shopping list in hand, and bought all of the things she needed to make this.

I gotta tell you guys, one of my favorite things to do is cook with my kids. For the moment, it’s just the one out of the four that seems interested, but that’s ok! We have so much fun. And it’s so important to get your kids in the kitchen and cook with them. My mom and grandma did with me. I think the first thing my mom taught me how to make was spaghetti sauce. I’m not 100% certain, but it’s definitely the one I remember the most. I enjoyed it, but as I got to be a teen, I swore I wanted nothing to do with it anymore or anything else domestic related. 😂😂😂😂 So here I am many years later, a stay at home mom, and all things domestic, loving every minute of it.  Here’s the thing guys, when those kids show interest in helping, no matter what it is, harness it. Let them help. They want to be part of something. They want to spend time with you. Don’t wave them off, bring them in the kitchen with you. There’s always something they can do.

Because I believe so heavily that kids in the kitchen is so important, I want to make it a regular on my blog. Maybe it will give you some ideas to try with your kids, or grandkids, nieces, nephews, what have ya. So let do this! Come join me and Andrea (age 10) in my kitchen while we introduce you to this beautiful fruit salad!

This is a very easy salad, with plenty of things for the kiddos to help with. I started off by pitting the cherries, and cutting up the strawberries into bite size pieces. Then I had Andrea pretty much do the rest, starting with rinsing and patting the berries (very gently of course) dry.

Then once she patted them dry, she put them all in a big bowl. I used the largest bowl I have, to make sure she had enough room to gently toss with ease, when it came time for that.

This is the part where we stood back and commented to each other how pretty that looked. The berries are just so vibrant in color. I love naturally beautiful fruit salads. Our next step was to mix the very simple, yet incredible dressing. We got a small bowl and mixed together some lime juice and some honey. You can use fresh lime juice if you want to, but we used bottled.

Once that was all mixed up, it was time to drizzle that all over the berries.

Then you very carefully and gently toss to combine it all and coat the berries in that wonderful dressing. Andrea has watched me in the kitchen so often, and we have of course done some cooking together before, that she is fully aware that the cook gets to taste! We did not skip this step. We tasted, we were both very dramatic about how wonderful it already tasted, and then had to cover it and put it in the fridge before we sat there and just ate the whole thing right away! This salad is so incredibly light and refreshing, even after a big meal like what we had. Perfect light dessert. You could serve it with a dollop of whipped cream if you wish. We could not wait to share this with our family! Everyone (except my berry hating husband) absolutely loved it! Andrea got a lot of praises for this.  I hope you and your kids enjoy this salad as much as we did!

 

Print Recipe
Light and Refreshing Berry Fruit Salad Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Salads
Cuisine American
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Rinse and very gently pat your berries and cherries dry.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice and honey. Pour over fruit and toss gently to coat.
  3. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Fruit salad is always best served the same day it's made, but it's still good the next day.
Recipe Notes

Very slightly adapted from kristineskitchenblog.com

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Tomato, Cucumber & Avocado Salad

Warmer weather has made its way to my part of the world, and I get so excited when the temperature gets warmer because for me, that means grilling! Now, we grill all year round, but honestly in the colder months, it’s just less often. It’s not all about the grill though! Oh noooo. It’s salads too! I love salads. I could live on salads. There’s so many different kinds, like potato salads, and noodle salads, and fruit salads. Then there’s salads like this one. Tomato, Cucumber & Avocado Salad. I prepared this salad last Sunday. We invited my mom-in-law over for dinner, and I had my husband (the Grill Master of the house) grill up this incredible chicken I had marinating, and I prepared some green beans, and this incredibly yummy salad.  This recipe makes quite a bit, like 8-10 servings, however, I was only feeding 5 of us and we ended up with only 1 serving left over. Some time in the middle of the night, the hubster ate it for a snack! That’s just how good this is.

This recipe was inspired by one of my favorite bloggers, Lauren over at Tastes Better  From Scratch. She has tons of delicious recipes, and she’s really not kidding, it really does taste better from scratch. Another reason why I love salads. They’re just so fresh and delicious!

So here it is folks! Tomato, Cucumber & Avocado Salad!

Print Recipe
Tomato, Cucumber & Avocado Salad Yum
Recipe by Christine Titus
Course Salads
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Course Salads
Servings
servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, drizzle lemon juice over chopped avocado, and toss to coat. Add tomatoes, cucumbers, onion and feta cheese to avocado. In a small bowl, whisk together red wine vinegar, olive oil, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper. Pour over salad and top with fresh cilantro. Toss gently to combine.
Recipe Notes

adapted from tastesbetterfromscratch.com

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