Burrata in my pasta and salad

I ordered a salad at lunch a while back and was so disappointed. It was a Burrata salad and the chef had added garlic salt to the cheese. The salt and powdery garlic flavor was so over powering, my salad was ruined.

On Sunday, we were shopping for the week’s meals and I saw Burrata. Let’s try this salad again at home.

But salad isn’t my family’s favorite meal (they’ll eat it as a side, more like an after thought or after they’ve eaten all the starches). So, I looked up a recipe and found it can sneak into pasta too.

They liked the pasta better than the salad. But I loved the salad. The creaminess freshness of the cheese was a perfect accompaniment to the juicy mandarins. Try them both.

Burrata Pasta

* Handful of spaghetti (wide noodles would be great too) keep the cooking water
* 3 slices of bacon, cut into 1″ pieces
* 1 ear of corn, kernels cut from cob
* 5 fresh basil leaves, minced finely
* 2 fresh basil leaves, julianned for topping
* 1 tsp salt
* 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
* 1 TBSP olive oil
* 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan
* pinch of chili flakes
* Burrata

Cook the pasta in a large pot. Don’t forget to salt the heck out of that water.

While pasta is cooking, mix the salt, breadcrumbs and minced basil. Then add olive oil to the mixture and place in a large non-stick pan and brown. Set aside when it had a nice golden color.

Using the same pan, fry your bacon. Add the corn kernels and cook for about 5 mins.

When pasta is cooked, add them to the bacon and corn pan. Add the chili flakes if you don’t have a little one. If you do, they taste just fine added to individual servings. Add a couple spoons of pasta water and the Parmesan cheese. Once you like the consistency, top it with the Burrata.

Serve with the breadcrumb mixture, chili, basil and Parmesan on the side so people can make the dish to their liking.

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Burrata Salad

* arugula
* mandarins
* blueberries
* basil
* Burrata
* olive oil
*aged balsamic
* pinch of salt

Mix it all together. Add the Burrata. Sprinkle with salt and then add the oil and vinegar.

So refreshing!

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Salad Hugs

Did you know salads are capable of giving hugs? I had no idea either – until I had this salad and every time I’ve eaten it since (which has been a lot).

The roasted jalapeño in the dressing is the key to the warmth. But the richness of the avocado, the refreshing jolts from the mandarins/tangerines and the feistiness of the arugula all add to the excitement of this salad’s hugs.

I love it so much we have had it almost every week since first having it back in March.

What an experience. Try this recipe to get your salad hug today.

The Hugging Salad

* baby arugula
* 2 mandarins or tangerines, peeled and segmented
* 1 avocado, cubed
* a few leaves of mint (or cilantro), sliced thinly
* goat milk feta, half a handful of crumbles

Dressing
* 1/4 cup olive oil or walnut oil
* 1 roasted, deseeded jalapeño, minced
* 1/2 shallot, minced
* 1/4 cup orange juice
* 2 TBSP red wine, champagne, or peach vinegar.
* pinch of salt

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Make the dressing in advance so you can put a proper chill on it. The flavors also have a chance to get acquainted and taste even more divine.

To make the dressing, heat the orange juice in a pot over medium high heat until it reduces down to about 2TBSP. It should coat the back of a spoon.

While that’s cooking on the stove, roast your jalapeño. I have a gas stove and simply place it on the burner until it’s charred all over. You can also use your broiler. Once it’s charred, wrap it in some paper towel or a clean cloth to steam a bit. After 10 mins, you can easily peel the pepper. Deseed it then mince it into tiny pieces.

Add all your dressing ingredients together (you might want to reserve some of the jalapeño if you want to control the heat). Whisk until it’s emulsified. Taste for salt. Put it in the fridge.

When ready, assemble all the salad fixings and then dress it with your salad dressing.

Then prepare for a hug!

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Agua Fresca de Watermelon

Mini seedless watermelons are popping up at all our grocery stores. After one sat on our counter for a week, I figured it was time to get creative.

After cutting a few slices for the little one to snack on, I threw the rest into a blender with 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup sugar, and the juice from one lemon.

Served on the rocks, it’s a perfect warm weather refreshment. Better yet, add it to some bubbly or add in some vodka (heck, add both) and begin the chillaxing.

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Coastal Kale Salad

Warning: this recipe is extremely addictive for “healthy eaters.”

Healthy eater definition: Someone who loves salads, snacks on fruits, has eaten kale and liked it. This does not however mean that they don’t indulge in the double-double every now and again. And this doesn’t mean that they ever skip dessert for any other reason than being too full.

Warning continued: if you don’t care for the greens, you should probably skip to the next non-salad recipe.

PS I have no idea why it’s “coastal”. Our neighborhood grocery store inspired the recipe and that’s what they call it. Ha!

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Coastal Kale Salad

* 1 bunch of dinosaur kale, stems removed and rough cut into ~1 1/2″ pieces.
* 1 handful micro greens or pea shoots
* juice from 1/2 fresh lemon
* 2 – 3 TBSP braggs amino acids
* 1/4 cup olive oil
* a few shakes of chia seeds
* a few shakes of Pepitas or pumpkin seeds no shells
* a few shakes of sunflower seeds no shells
* 1/4 red onion sliced super thin

Mix the wet ingredients in a separate jar. Cover and shake. Add more aminos if it needs more umami.

Mix other ingredients in another bowl. Add the dressing just until the kale looks shiny.

Chill and serve.

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Enjoy!

Late Spring Lobster and Mint Pasta

I know. I know. At least I’m back and I have loads to share.

This recipe is so random that it inspired the return just so i can archive it for frequent rotation.

Who knew mint and lobster were delicious together. Oh and be aware, we showered it with Parmesan – a classic “no, no” with seafood pasta. But seriously, you should try it … You might like it.

Lobster and Mint Pasta

(Feeds 2.5)

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* 2-3 lobster tails (ours were tiny and I wish I had 3. Whole Foods has 2 for $12 right now)
* 1 shallot, sliced thin
* 1-2 large garlic cloves, sliced thin
* 2 knobs of unsalted butter (~ 2 TBSP)
* 1 TBSP olive oil
* 7-10 mint leaves, cut thinly
* 2 pinches of red chili flakes
* a handful of spaghetti or linguini (don’t throw out the pasta water)
* salt for pasta water
* Parmesan

Boil a big pot of water for the pasta. Add a large handful of salt to the water prior to adding the pasta. I heard once that the water should be as salty as the sea. If you do this, you won’t need to add any more salt.

In another small pot, steam the lobster tails until they are pink (~5-7 mins). I have this great silicon steamer that fits into any pot. If you don’t have this, put a bit of water in your pot then one small plate (that fits in the pot) facing down and one facing up on top of it. Make sure these plates are heat safe. Then put the lobsters on that plate.

In a pan, melt 1 TBSP of the butter and add the olive oil. Cook the shallots and garlic until tender.

Once the lobster tails are cooked, pull the meat from the tails and slice them into 1″ pieces. Add them to the shallots and garlic. Add the remaining butter. Add cooked pasta straight from the boiling water to the pan. Add a few spoonfuls of pasta water to the pan ~1/4 cup. Cook a bit until the sauce coats the pasta.

Now if you have little ones at home, reserve the chili and mint for the adults to add to their own dishes. Otherwise, add the chili flakes now.

Serve with mint and Parmesan. Mmm!