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Grilled Corn, Tomatoes & Basil Salad

Grilled corn, tomato and basil salad

Sweet corn was a welcome summer favorite at our home in the Midwest. I don’t know who was more excited about it, the raccoons or me. My furry friends were always on standby, holding a saltshaker in one paw and a stick of butter in the other. Like me, they would do almost anything for a fresh, sweet ear of corn.

Raccoon with sign

Original photo by Ravi – altered by Cathy

The patient creatures would wait until late at night when the house was dark, under the stars they would self-serve our precious corn. Dinner was shared on the lawn with much enthusiasm and happy chatter. Merrily they shucked each ear, nibbling the corn a few rows at a time, just like me. When sweet corn is good, it is very, very good.

In truth those masked mischievous mammals were a menace, but in the end we were resigned to share our crop. Continue Reading →

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Salads that Scream Olé

DOLE spinach & flaming strawberry sangria salad

Life of a Spanish Party… 

“Salad cannot be the life of a party,” a friend said to me recently. As an inveterate salad lover, this gave me pause for thought. “Well, why can’t salad be the life of a party,” I said to myself, then to my friend. And I took it upon myself to prove that, indeed, salad CAN be the life of the party!

Salad traditionally has some tough competition for center stage: savory appetizers, mouthwatering meats and luscious desserts all vying for attention. For a salad to be a contender for stardom it would have to rock the stage. What could be better, I got to thinking, than a little pyromania? Aha! I knew I was on to something. Let me explain.

Fire Fiasco

I have experience lighting things on fire… even if it was my childhood friend (sorry Pam). I didn’t understand that gasoline in a can plus playing with matches while burning trash equals somebody’s getting burned, and the other somebody getting grounded. Fortunately, Pam didn’t get hurt, because she knew to roll in the dirt and NOT because I tried to put the fire out on her leg by beating her with a plastic trash can. Oh the lessons we learn! Fast forward several decades… Continue Reading →

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Asparagus Salad w/Shallots, Pine Nuts & Cheese

Photo by Cathy Nelson Arkle

Warmer weather is finally approaching and with it comes delightful spring vegetables. One of my favorites is asparagus: it’s stylish, bright and addictive.

There are so many simple ways to cook asparagus, and today’s recipe won’t heat up your kitchen or take much of your time. It is also perfect for a picnic or potluck as it travels well.

I took this delectable “Raw Asparagus Salad with Shallots, Pine Nuts & Cheese” to my monthly LA Food Blogger’s Meet-Up. This month’s theme was salads, and what a fabulous array of spring inspired dishes we had. Here are just a few.
Jicama SaladFBLA salad meeting

Maura Hernandez of The Other Side of the Tortilla made Ensalada Xec (Mayan citrus salad ) & Ericka Sanchez of Nibbles and Feasts made Melon Salad with Coconut Milk.

FBLA meetingJudy Lyness of Two Broads Abroad created this gorgeous Thai Beef Salad Continue Reading →

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Seared Tuna and Orange Supreme Salad

I love simple recipes that reproduce the flavors you adore in high-end eateries, especially when I am entertaining. So I was delighted to be a part of a cooking demonstration/tasting with other LA based food bloggers featuring Chef Johnny Prep. This Detroit based chef & cooking coach is committed to helping the home cook with simple recipes that are restaurant quality.

In his book “The Five Star Casual Entertaining Cookbook”, Chef Johnny offers tips and simple recipes for making entertaining stress-free. Continue Reading →

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Killer Kale, A Cat Tale…

cathy nelson arkle

I have a confession. My cat, Dante, likes kale better than I do.  I am trying to take his lead and eat more of it.  So when I find a recipe that makes kale tasty, I get a little excited, even if I have to fight my cat for the green stuff.

Maybe Dante knows that kale has one of the highest levels of antioxidants of any vegetable. Its richness shines in: antioxidant nutrients, anti-inflammatory nutrients, and anti-cancer nutrients. This should up the ante for eating more kale.

As for Dante… here is the kale tale. Continue Reading →

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