Sweet and Savory Kumquat, Avocado, Radish, Dried Cherry salad with passionfruit vinaigrette

When I was growing up our neighbors had a kumquat tree that to this day is incredibly generative and has the best tasting kumquats.  Kumquats bring back beautiful childhood memories of running around the neighborhood and freely picking the deliciously sweet and tart abundant kumquats.  So yesterday, towards the end of a long training run, I wanted to put them in a salad and came up with this sweet and savory salad where the sweetness from the dried cherries and passionfruit vinaigrette nicely counterbalanced some of the tart flavors induced by the kumquats and radish.  And then the creamy avocado and slivered almonds add some nice creamy and crunch texture to the mix to create an overall delicious salad!

Ingredients:
Salad:
1. 1 large bag of mixed salad greens
2.  Handful of kumquats diced into quarters
3. 1 medium to large avocado, sliced into small pieces
4. Handful of dried cherries  – I’m loving Costco’s Kirkland dried cherries now
5. 3-4 radishes sliced into small slices
6. Handful of slivered almonds (toasted or not toasted- up to you)
7. Salt and pepper to taste

Dressing:
1. 2 tbsp olive oil
2. 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
3. Passionfruit mustard – This can be admittedly hard to find.  We got some from Aunty Lillikoi brand on a recent trip to Hawaii that we have almost entirely devoured.  If you can’t find this, you can just add regular mustard and sweeten with some honey.

Directions:
1. Add ingredients 1-6 to a large salad bowl
2. Stir vinaigrette until all ingredients mix well and right before serving mix into the salad and coat well/toss.
3. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy!!

Hawaiian Farmer’s Market Salad

I was recently blessed to spend five days in Kauai and got
to go to a couple of farmer’s markets, which are a real treat b/c of: 1. the
rare tropical produce we don’t get in CA (passion fruit, mangosteen, longan,
rambutan and so much more), and 2. I forgot how expensive food can be in
Hawaii, and farmer’s market produce and cooking some meals at home are a great
way to make vacation more affordable.  If
you are going to Kauai soon, you can find a great list of farmer’s markets here.  Everything we got was delicious and some
standouts included incredible pea sprouts and pretty much every fruit was really tasty (super juicy citrus, incredible pineapple, lots of litchi varietals, etc.).  I decided to use the local veggies to put
together a salad and the combination came together nicely with some tropical
twists from the coconut meat, macadamia nuts and creamy avocado.
Ingredients:
1.     
Local greens/ lettuce – ¾ of one head
2.     
Tomato – ½ sliced
3.     
Maui onion: Slice up one ring
4.     
Avocado – Dice up ½ large or 1 small
5.     
Macadamia nuts (raw or roasted) – ¼ cup
6.     
Pea Sprouts – 1 bunch chopped
7.     
Optional: If you have or can find coconut meat, add a
few slices as well
Directions: Mix everything together and top with your
favorite dressing.  We used classic
balsamic vinaigrette, which worked well and I could also see how tropical
fruity vinaigrette could also compliment the salad well.  Enjoy- Mahalo!

Curly beet apple medley

Today I was feeling in the mood to make something extra colorful.  Beets never disappoint in the color department so I took my beloved spiralizer (best new kitchen tool of 2014) and made curly beets and apples, chopped up some carrots, and threw some dried sour cherries and freshly crushed walnuts on top. Then I mixed together a quick dressing with olive oil, Meyer lemon, coconut sugar, salt and pepper.

Ingredients:
1. 1-2 medium beets
2. 1 apple (I used granny smith but you can use whatever varietals you have)
3. 1 carrot or a few baby carrots, chopped
4. handful of walnuts
5. handful of raisins or dried cherries

Dressing:
1. 2 tbsp olive oil
2. 1/4 Meyer lemon (or regular works too)
3. 1 tsp coconut sugar or honey
4. salt + pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Peel beet and apple
2. Place beet and apple through spiralizer to create thin spirals. Place in bowl.
3. Top with chopped carrots, walnuts and raisins or dried cherries.
4. Mix together dressing and drizzle on top of salad.

Note: This recipe was inspired by, though significantly adapted from, “Raw Beet Slaw” recipe in Roots cookbook (a really beautiful cookbook for those who want to explore cooking with root veggies).

Refreshing watermelon heirloom tomato avo salad

Ingredients:
1. Greens of your choice (I used Organic Girl’s “Super Greens” mix)
2. 1-2 diced heirloom tomatoes
3. Watermelon – I diced up about 2 slices
4. 1/2 avocado sliced
5. 2 diced radishes
6. chopped mint or basil to top

Steps:
1. Lay bed of greens
2. Top with all ingredients
3. For dressing you can make a simple balsamic olive oil mix or add some lime, honey, chipotle (or other hot spice) and of course salt and pepper to balsamic and olive to give it more of a latin kick