Category: Salad

What to Serve With Chicken Tortilla Soup

Chicken tortilla soup is a Mexican dish made with rotisserie chicken, tomato paste and Mexican spices. It is a recipe that you can easily prepare to serve during dinner parties, potlucks or just a simple meal that you are having at home. This can be prepared in many ways, and to avoid all the calories and fats, you can even have your own variety to make at home.

While chicken tortilla soup tastes as delicious as it looks, wouldn’t you prefer it if there are other foods or drinks to go with it instead of eating it plain? Now, you might be asking about what to serve with this delicious soup. Here are some suggestions so that your meal will be more delectable.

Beans and Salads
Beans and salads make perfect companions for chicken tortilla soup. For the beans, you can have a bowl of black or pinto beans or refried beans that are non-fat. You will definitely love both dishes, even if the beans do not have that much ingredients mixed with them. On the other hand, you can choose to have a green salad if you can whip it up. What you make will depend on your choice of vegetables and dressings. You can have a salad made vinaigrette which is made of olive oil, minced garlic, lime juice and cilantro. Should you choose to have garnishes, avocado slices, tomatoes or red onions will be perfect.

Entrees of your Choice
Chicken tortilla soup can make a perfect meal even if it is just the dish that you are going to have. However, it can also be perfect for meals that are Mexican-themed. What you have to keep in mind when choosing the dishes for the main course of the meal will be the richness of the tortilla soup. There are those who make the soup rich, usually made with cheese and sour cream. For this, a lighter entrée is well-suited for the meal such as taco salads and other similar recipes. For light soups which are made with broth, chicken enchiladas and quesadillas will be perfect for the meal.

Drinks and Desserts
There are drinks and desserts that go well with chicken tortilla soup. Beer is one that you might want to consider such as Mexican beers. If you prefer wine, you can also have it such as Sauvignon Blanc or any wine of your choice. You have to choose those that will not compete with the flavor of the soup that you are having. Should a non-alcoholic beverage be your choice, flavored water is suggested as well as pineapple ginger drink. Moreover, desserts that are suited for this dish include pineapple or lime ice or a bowl of fresh fruit.

There is indeed a variety of what you can serve with chicken tortilla soup, from drinks, entrees to desserts. Aside from these suggestions, you can also think about other food to serve with this tasty soup, depending on your preferences. But if you choose to just have the soup, you can always do so.

Weight Loss – Best Diet to Lose Weight

Fruits are nature’s colorful creation. Their varied shapes, sizes, aromas, textures, and flavors add to the attractiveness and appeal of food.

Like fruits, vegetables also provide color and variety to meals. You don’t need to go to the vitamin shop or vitamin store when you’ve got veggies. They contain significant sources of essential nutrients, vitamins (particularly A and C), minerals (particularly calcium and iron), fiber, and phytochemicals necessary for preventing disease, prolonging life, and promoting health. Not only that, eating veggies is the best diet to lose weight.

Fruits and vegetables are not only cancer fighters; they also provide healthful benefits against cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, stroke, obesity, diverticulosis, micronutrient deficiencies, cataracts, and birth defects.

Many people, however, regard fruits as accessory food items which one can never live without. Vegetables, on the other hand, are considered as dishes and not a major focus of meals.

Take advantage of the healthy benefits of fruits and vegetables.

  • Snack on fresh fruits or crispy vegetable strips should you get hungry between meals. Going green is the best diet to lose weight.
  • Enrich your breakfast cereals with sliced fruits.
  • Pick a vegetable or fruit you have never tasted before, like kiwi fruit, kale, or asparagus when shopping for groceries.
  • Serve fresh fruits for dessert, sliced and arranged creatively.
  • Add thinly sliced vegetables to noodles (e.g. sotanghon, miki, or misua) to increase its nutritional content.
  • Drink fresh fruit juices instead of soda, coffee, or tea to quench your thirst.
  • Choose food establishments that offer fruit-vegetable salad bars when eating out.
  • Buy fruits and vegetables in season. They are cheap and at their flavor and nutritional peaks.
  • Enhance your cooking skills by trying new fruit and vegetable recipes.
  • Garnish your food presentations with creatively sliced fruits and vegetables. Fruit and vegetable garnishing adds nutrients, color, and eye appeal.
  • Display fruits and vegetables where they can be seen often. You will more likely eat them if they are reachable.
  • Be innovative. Try raw vegetable salads. Simply slice the vegetables thinly. Add salt and calamansi. Toss with chopped tomatoes and onions.

Here are some recipes that you might want to try:

Pechay Salad

Ingredients

1 small bundle fresh pechay leaves, sliced thinly

2 medium tomatoes, diced

1 small onion, chopped

2 tablespoons calamansi juice

Salt to taste

Procedure

Toss all ingredients gently. Serve immediately.

Variation

Pechay may be substituted with other vegetables like Ampalaya or Radish.

Buttered Vegetables

Ingredients

1 large carrot, diced

1/4 kilo Baguio beans, 1 inch cut

1 large Singkamas, diced

1 can whole kernel corn

1/3 bar butter

Salt to taste

Procedure

Blanch carrot, Baguio beans, and Singkamas. Drain. Combine corn with blanched vegetables. Mix butter while vegetables are still hot. Add salt to taste.

Green Bean Omelette

Ingredients

1/2 kilo Green beans, 1 centimeter cut

1 small onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 egg, beaten

1 teaspoon Olive oil

Salt to taste

Procedure

Saute garlic and onion in a pan. Add the beans. When beans are cooked, add the beaten egg. Serve.

Spicing With Radishes – Horse, Red, Daikon and Wasabi

I am most familiar with the red radish, which I grow in my garden. If you want to introduce your children to the miracle of turning a seed into something on your dining room table (a.k.a. gardening), the red radish is your answer. It grows quickly in mediocre soil and is usually the first thing I pick from my garden each spring. Just don’t let them plop one in their mouths, or they may never want to garden again.

Alas, the red radish has very little energy value, but it is high in vitamin C compared to other root vegetables. It does perk up a salad or coleslaw, not only with its peppery, pungent flavor, but also with its bright, Christmas red color. The leaves are also edible and have more nutrients than the vegetable itself. That makes it a great little filler when you are low on salad greens. Soak the leaves and radishes in ice water to make them crisp before serving. Another reason to include radishes in your salad is for its crunchy texture.

Both the red radish and the horseradish are members of the mustard family, which explains their spicy flavor. Because of this bite, a little goes a long way. They are the small and tall of radishes. The horseradish can be five feet in height, while the red radish is the height of most ground cover. The root of the horseradish is bland until you grate it, which releases its pungent mustard oil. Mix it quickly with vinegar or it will lose its bite, darken and become bitter. It is best to use roots soon after you pick them or get them from the grocery store. Horseradish leaves are also edible, unless you are a horse, in which case it is poisonous. But I digress.

Vinegar and lemon juice complement horseradish by adding a sour flavor to it. Vinegar acts as a preservative and keeps the root from loosing flavor. If your jar of prepared horseradish has darkened from its original creamy white color, it is time to replenish it. Cream or mayonnaise improves the taste of horseradish by adding sweetness. Thus, it is often found in the form of a relish, but you may buy the light yellow roots as fresh produce. Fresh is better than dried. Add ¾ teaspoon of salt and 2/3 of a cup of white vinegar for every 1½ cups of grated horseradish root. You’ll like it better than the prepared stuff.

Horseradish is often associated with seafood, roast beef and cocktail sauces. It is also great with cream cheese in dips and with hard-boiled eggs. As with many salad fixings, you don’t have to cook radishes. A little known fact is that southwestern Illinois grows about 85% of the world’s horseradish market.

In Japan horseradish is often dyed green and served as a substitute for the more expensive wasabi radish. Daikon is also a radish used mostly in Japan. It looks like a white carrot and is peeled like one. It is often pickled in soy sauce and sugar.

This is probably more than you ever wanted to know about radishes. All in all they are easy to grow, colorful, spicy, crunchy and full of vitamin C with edible leaves. What else do you need to know?

Shrimp Tomato Cheese Toast – Easy Recipe

Italian tomato shrimp cheese toast is a delightful and easy dish to make at home.

Ingredients:

One dozen ready to cook shrimp

One tomato

Sweet tomato sauce – 1 cup

Basil

Oregano

Garlic Salt

Thinly Sliced Bread

Mozzarella cheese – 1 1/2 cups

Olive Oil

Parmesan cheese

First you must toast your bread in the oven. Next, heat up your olive oil in a skillet and season it with garlic salt, oregano, basil, salt and pepper. Once the olive oil heats up, place your shrimp in the mixture and saute them. Take care not to burn the spices with the oil.

Once the shrimp are done, empty them and the remainder of the oil mixture into a bowl and add your sweet tomato sauce to the same skillet. Add a little Parmesan cheese and mix until it is thoroughly heated.

Place a layer of Mozzarella cheese onto your toast, followed by the tomato sauce and Parmesan mixture. Next, slice your tomato and place one slice on top of each piece of toast. Place about a half dozen shrimp on each top of each piece of toast. Cover it with the rest of the Mozzarella cheese.

Broil the toast in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until the cheese on top of the toast is brown and bubbly. Take the toast out of the oven and place directly onto a serving dish or kitchen plates. Serve with an Italian salad and red or white wine for a delicious and easy meal.

Hot Dog Stand Recipe – You Can Make Yummy Stadium Style Hot Dogs Right at Home

I made hot dogs the same way pretty much for years. They were always okay, but nothing to brag about. I think maybe in the back of my mind, the lowly wiener was just not important enough to warrant creative input from my imaginative culinary side. Then one day, I decided to try something different.

As a youngster, I was taught to boil the wiener in water, put it in a bun, and squirt various condiments on top. But as I grew and advanced in culinary skills, I knew there had to be a way to improve on this method of cooking a hot dog.

Things that go great with hot dogs are: potato chips, baked beans, coleslaw, or potato salad.

This method of cooking the lowly wiener is now a regular thing around my house. My family loves them, and they really are good. Here’s what you’ll need:

* All beef wieners (you can eat that other “stuff” if you want, we only eat beef wieners; we also prefer bun length)

* Soft buns (you want fresh buns here, not stale, although you can steam stale buns back to life if you insist on using old bread – I have other uses for old bread such as Bread Pudding with Amaretto Sauce)

* Hot dog relish

* Sauerkraut

* Diced onions

* Mustard and ketchup

* Kraft shredded mexican style four cheese blend

* Hot dog chili sauce (Castleberry’s is our favorite)

* Laura’s homemade cole slaw

* Butter

* Tin foil

* Crock-pot

* Cast iron skillet

Now, you do not have to do everything the same way I do it. I am letting everyone know how I do it, and you can adjust as you see fit.

Please note the hot dogs need to spend some time in the crock-pot in order to be good, and the steaming method I mention below is great. Plan properly so the dog packets get to warm and meld inside their “packet” in the hot crock-pot. I normally make the dogs and allow them 45 minutes to an hour in the crock.

  1. About an hour before dinner, turn the crock-pot on low and let it get warm.
  2. Heat up the iron skillet, and add a tablespoon of butter.
  3. Fry the beef wieners in the iron skillet.
  4. When they have a good “fry” on the outside, sort of like you get if you grill them, remove and place inside of a fresh non-stale soft bun (I am very particular about my bread being soft and fresh)
  5. Immediately wrap the assembled bun and wiener in tin foil, sealing all edges.
  6. Place in crock-pot.
  7. Repeat with remaining buns and wieners.
  8. Cover the crock-pot and leave it alone.
  9. Heat up the chili in the microwave or on the stove.
  10. Prepare the other condiments.
  11. Get everything on the table, including drinks, chips, dip, whatever.
  12. Then get out one assembled dog at a time for each diner, keeping the rest in the crock-pot with lid on to remain warm.

These warm up really great. Simply take the bun and wiener combination out of aluminum foil (do not forget this step in order to avoid a nasty microwave incident), wrap loosely in a paper towel, and microwave about 10-15 seconds. Do not overdo it, the bun will get hard.

Alternate method: I tried this once and it was even better. Place a rack in the bottom of the crock-pot before adding hot dogs. Add one tablespoon or so of water. Be careful, you do not want to have the dog packets sitting in liquid. The idea is to lightly “steam” them instead.

I usually eat two hot dogs, each made as follows:

Version #1: (ingredients are in the order used) mustard, ketchup, relish, chili sauce, cheese, onions

Version #2: (ingredients are in the order used) mustard, relish, onions, sauerkraut, homemade coleslaw

Now, a note here about slaw. There are all kinds of different ways to make coleslaw. There is also slaw mix that can be bought in a bag. I am as particular about my slaw as I am about my bread. My momma made coleslaw pretty much the same way for years, and it always tasted good.

If you’ve ever eaten bad coleslaw, you’ll remember it. Some fast food restaurants have the audacity to CALL it coleslaw, but it is more like tasteless cardboard “stuff.” Did it ever seem to you that the slaw in many restaurants is often stark white, as if it is all made entirely from the cabbage core? Makes you wonder what happened to all of the GREEN stuff.

I’ll be sure to place a link to my coleslaw recipe at the end of the article, so be sure and grab that and try it with these delicious stadium style hot dogs.

I am very picky about certain things: fresh bread is one; fresh milk is another; good tasting coleslaw is important; I think the hot dog chili sauce by Castleberry’s is great; I use the Kraft Mexican style four cheese blend almost daily; I want to know what is in the meat I eat. However, to each his own. Enjoy!

Conquering the Mizithra Cheese of Greece

Do you know that the Greeks are responsible of making the most delectable kind of cheese, known as the Mizithra Cheese? Mizithra Cheese is a traditional Greek cheese and its history goes back to the ancient times. The real, true Mizithra is produced in Greece. It is a traditional, unpasteurized fresh cheese made with milk and whey from sheep or goats. It is mainly produced in the island of Crete, but other areas in Greece also produce it.

How Mizithra is Made

The milk from sheep or goats is boiled at moderate temperature for ten minutes and then rennet is added while ruffling. The mix is then poured into a basket with a cloth inside and is left to drain for a few hours. In the past, balls of Mizithra were hung outdoors in small sheets of it to air-dry. The fresh form of Mizithra is creamy and bright white with a slightly granular texture. It often has a slightly tangy flavor, depending on the time of year when it is made.

Kinds of Mizithra

Mizithra cheese is very unique from other kinds of cheeses because it can be served at a variety of stages in the aging process. Fresh Mizithra is soft and creamy, similar to cottage cheese. Aged Mizithra is known as Anthotyros. This cheese is usually formed into the shape of a ball or truncated cylindar. Sour Mizithra is known as Xynomizithra. This type of Mizithra has a very sour, tangy flavor.

Mizithra Cheese Being Protected

The Mizithra Cheese is a protected name, which means that only if a cheese is produced in a certain way and in a certain region can be named as Mizithra. Mizithra from Crete is famous among cheese lovers and is a completely protected version of Mizithra.

Serving Mizithra

Greeks simply adore their Mizithra Cheese and have different ways of serving it. They eat fresh Mizithra for breakfast or dessert, with thyme honey or with some fresh fruit added to honey. This cheese can also be consumed with olives, fresh tomatoes, basil, and of course bread. The longer this cheese is aged, the better it goes with the most delicious fresh Greek garden salads! It is very popular in serving salads or pasta toppings, either crumbled or grated. Simple pasta with cooked tomatoes and fresh basil, if topped with the Mizithra Cheese, will give you an amazing pasta treat.

You can conquer Greece just by serving this sumptuous cheese in your dinner table. Don’t be the last person to taste this extraordinary Mizithra Cheese.

Baby Shower Party Recipes: Make "Baby" Your Theme

“When you are looking at making food for the next baby shower you host, make sure the word “baby” appears in all the recipes. When the baby shower party recipes all have the word “baby” in them, you are making the menu thematic. Your guests will love it!

Here are some baby shower recipes you can consider the next time you are hosting this type of party:

*Baby Shrimp

*Baby Meatballs

– Both of these only need to be purchased and heated. You can serve them as appetizers with decorative toothpicks.

*Baby Carrots

*Baby Snap Peas

*Baby Swiss Cheese

– Wash and eat the vegetables. Cut into cubes and eat the cheese. These can be used as sides along with your main course or as appetizers throughout your baby shower.

*Baby Bagel Sandwiches

Ingredients:

Various cooked meats – ham, turkey, roast beef

Various fillings – chicken and tuna salad

Various cheeses – American, Swiss and mozzarella

Baby bagels – white and wheat varieties

Sliced vegetables – lettuce, tomato, cucumber

Condiments

– Slice bagels and place on large serving tray.

– Create a large display of the cooked meats and cheeses on a separate large serving tray.

– Have the various fillings in matching serving bowls on either side of the cooked meats tray.

– Create a large display of the sliced veggies on a separate large serving tray.

– Allow your guests to create their own baby bagel sandwich on the spot, so it will be fresh and to their liking.

*Baby Back Ribs

Ingredients:

2 lbs pork baby back ribs

1 bottle of barbeque sauce – 18 ounces of your favorite variety

– Brush each rib with plenty of barbeque sauce. Wrap tightly in a piece of tin foil sprayed with cooking spray. Place in the refrigerator overnight.

– Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

– Bake the foil covered ribs for 2 ½ hours.

– Remove from the foil and add additional sauce to taste.

Makes 4 servings

*Baby Blue Punch

Ingredients:

1 package of blue drink mix, unsweetened – any flavor that is blue

1 bottle lemon lime soda

1 bottle white cranberry juice

Vanilla ice cream

White sugar

– In a large punch bowl, mix the flavored drink mix, lemon lime soda and cranberry juice.

– Add the sugar to taste, up to 1 cup.

– Scoop the ice cream on top and serve.

Makes up to 24 servings

All of these baby shower party recipes are fresh, yummy, and will allow everyone to eat something they enjoy.