Tag Archives: tomato

Crock Pot Chicken Yellow Curry Soup

DSC_0012 Last week on Facebook, I asked which you – fantastic fan – would like more recipes for: veggies, meat or crock pot, and the slow cooker was the winning vote by far. Here’s my guess on why: crock pots do everything for you…except clean up. Yup. It’s true. Put it in and walk away…it’s like the Ronco Showtime Rotisserie Oven for the busy Paleo eater (I know you remember those “Set it and forget it!” Saturday morning infomercials).

I took one of my most adored recipes from my Crock Pot Recipe Guide and gave it a slight makeover. What resulted was a warm, filling, and savory curry that’s not at all spicy hot. Best part, it’s free from the weird ingredients found in most premixed curry pastes. and you don’t have to worry about that lonesome jar of rarely used curry powder getting stale because you’ve made it fresh. Makes about four servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 lb. (~700 g) boneless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into chunks
  • 6 cups of veggies, chopped (I used one cup each of onion, carrots, green beans, broccoli, tomatoes and red bell pepper. Use what you like or have on hand.)
  • 1-14 oz can (~400 ml) of full fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes (or tomato sauce)
  • 1 Tablespoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, optional
  • 1 cup water (for a thicker, curry-like sauce, omit the water)
  • Salt, to taste

Directions:

  1. Cut the chicken and veggie into medium-large chunks. Put everything into the crock pot.
  2. Stir in the coconut milk, and crushed tomatoes. Then add the spices: cumin, ground coriander, ginger, garlic, cinnamon and cayenne pepper. Add the water. Stir to combine everything.
  3. Cook on low for 5-6 hours. [I cooked mine for 8 hours overnight since my current crock pot does not have an automatic shut off function, though, at it came out perfect nonetheless.] 
  4. If the you want it more like a curry and less like a soup, omit the 1 cup of water above. You can also remove the lid from the crock pot for the last hour of cooking so some of the moisture evaporates.
  5. Season to taste with salt.
  6. Serve. Would be great over cauliflower rice, but it’s tasty on its own, too.

Fourth of July Salsa

DSC_0792 Happy Independence Day! Summer is in full swing, and you’re sure to find an abundance of red, white and blue-themed recipes to put on your table. This fruit-based salsa is festive and easy to throw together for a holiday BBQ or party. Even though fruit is the star, it’s balanced out by a bit of heat from the jalapeño, acidity from the tomato and lime, and freshness from the mint. This would also be fantastic with some cubed avocado, served over grilled chicken or salmon. Eat up!

Prep time: 10-15 min     Cook time:  0 min     Makes: ~3 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup strawberries, chopped
  • 1/2 cup blueberries, sliced in half
  • 1 ripe white peach, peeled and chopped
  • 1/2 a tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 a jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced (or leave seeds in for more heat)
  • 1 Tablespoon thinly sliced mint leaves
  • 2 Tablespoons lime juice (about 2 limes)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Chop all the fruit. Mince the jalapeño pepper. Stack the mint leaves on top of each other and roll lengthwise. Slice thinly.
  2. Combined all ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and toss well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  3. For best results, let the ingredients hang out and get friendly for at least an hour before serving.

 

Ratatouille a la Claudette

DSC_0791 This rainbow on a plate was inspired by a ratatouille made by my amazing friend Claudette, the owner of Cavegirl Confections (her granola and nut butters are HIGH quality and made with love…and she ships). We got together for dinner last week – with scallops, crab cakes, pork belly and lamb kofta with lemony herb sauce – and she made this as a side dish. It’s light and colorful and perfect for summer. Claudette’s not a big eggplant fan, so she left it out, but you could certainly add it if you’d like.

Like the creative genius that she is, she slices the peppers and tomato thin and uses a regular ol’ peeler to make the squash, zucchini and carrots into wide noodles.

Prep time: 10 min     Cook time:  8-10 min     Makes: 2-3 side-dish servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 carrots
  • 2 zucchini
  • 2 yellow summer squash
  • 1 large tomato
  • 1 bell pepper, any color
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • Large spoonful of ghee (I like Omghee) or your fat of choice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Use a regular vegetable peeler to peel the carrots, zucchini and yellow squash into long slices. Seed and thinly slice the tomato and bell pepper. Roughly chop the basil and parsley.
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the ghee. Sauté the veggies (save the herbs for later) until they’re tender but not mushy, about 6-8 minutes. Turn off the heat, sprinkle in the herbs and season with salt and pepper to your liking.
  3. Easy peasy!

Easy Paleo Lamb Sliders

Photo Jun 29, 5 14 24 PM The other day, I was really craving a Greek salad (score for salad cravings, right?!). I had all the veggie components in the fridge, but I definitely wanted to top it with something meaty, so I came up with a quick batch of lamb burgers. In the end, I wound up making them more like sliders – smaller than a burger – and served them with my salad, some Paleo Tzatziki Sauce, and a squeeze of lemon.

Lamb a bit strong for your palate? Try mixing it with half beef to make the flavor milder. My Greek salad was a combo of tomato, cucumber, sweet onion and olives, drizzled with Kasandrinos olive oil.

Prep time: 5 min     Cook time:  15 min     Makes: 6-8 sliders (1 lb. of meat)

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. of ground lamb (or half beef, half lamb)
  • 1/2 an onion, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 Tablespoon dried dill
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Directions: 

  1. Mix the ingredients gently in a large bowl until well combined. Overworking the meat will cause it to be tough. 
  2. Shape the meat into burgers however large you’d like. I made 8 small sliders. Don’t pack the meat in too tightly or the burger will be dense.
  3. Grill or fry in a pan over medium-high heat until cooked through, 4-5 minutes per side. If preparing in a pan, I like to quickly sear both sides then throw the burgers in a 350F oven for ~10 minutes to finish cooking through.
  4. Serve with Tzatziki for dipping!

Simple Shrimp Ceviche

DSC_0219Can I interest you in a meal that cooks itself?

Yes? I thought so!

It’s not too good to be true, it’s just ceviche – a dish of seafood that’s “cooked” using citrus juices and served up with ingredients like tomato, jalapeño and avocado. YUM. Last year, I posted a recipe for ceviche - along with one of the first videos I ever made…eeeek – and recently, I created a different one with shrimp that came out just as good (if not better).

Since I cook for just one person, I only used 1/2 lb. of shrimp but you can easily double the recipe or more. Plan the day (or morning) ahead so you can give the ceviche enough time to “cook”. If you don’t like shrimp, you can substitute scallops or firm white fish. Rumor has it that the juice from the marinade is a hangover cure though I haven’t tested that theory yet ;)

Prep time: 15-20 min     Cook time: 6+ hours    Makes: ~3 cups

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lb. (~250 g) raw shrimp
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 a jalapeño pepper, minced (optional)
  • 1/2 an avocado, cubed
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

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Directions:

  1. Peel and devein the shrimp, if necessary. Chop the shrimp into small pieces.
  2. Prepare the veggies: dice the tomato, mince the garlic and jalapeño, and cube the avocado. If you want the ceviche to be spicier, you can leave the seeds in or add more jalapeño.
  3. Mix the shrimp, tomato, garlic, jalapeño and avocado in a bowl. Squeeze the citrus juice on top and combine. There should be enough liquid to cover the shrimp.
  4. Refrigerate for at least 6 hours or until the shrimp has turned from translucent to opaque.
  5. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper to taste and top with chopped cilantro.

Cold Zucchini Noodle Salad with Tomato and Olives

DSC_0717 Zucchini noodles are rad. I made this simple cold salad by tossing them with a drizzle of olive oil and white balsamic, then serving them with tomato and olives. With warmer weather upon us, this would be a great side dish for a BBQ or picnic lunch. If you want to be fancy, you could chop up the olives and tomato or add canned artichokes or even a few leaves of fresh basil.

Prep time: 30 min     Cook time: 0 min    Makes: ~5 cups

Ingredients:

  • 5 medium zucchini
  • ~2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil (I like Kasandrinos Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
  • 1 Tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, whole or chopped
  • 1 cup pitted black olives (I like kalamata), whole or chopped

Directions:

  1. Peel zucchini with a julienne peeler (like this one), sprinkle evenly with salt (I mix it by hand to make sure it’s evenly distributed), and place in a colander to drain for about 20 min. The salt pulls moisture out of the zucchini, making a more tender noodle. Put the colander in the sink because it’ll leak all over the countertop if you don’t.
  2. Rinse thoroughly with water to wash away the excess salt and squeeze to remove the extra moisture.
  3. Drizzle the noodles with olive oil and white balsamic vinegar. Toss to combine.
  4. Add the tomato and olives. Stir in or leave on top…it’s up to you!
  5. Voila.

 

Paleo Carnitas Egg Muffins

DSC_0618 Breakfast muffins are a really easy way to use up leftover cooked meat and make for portable protein as well. I woke up the other day, threw these together and considered them tasty enough to post on the blog. Use any kind of cooked shredded meat (or even ground meat) you have lying around and make sure you cook the veg ahead of time so it doesn’t make the muffins soggy.

These make a perfect pre-workout snack.! Add cooked cubed sweet potato for some carbs and you’ve got a decent post-workout meal.

Prep time: 15-20 min     Cook time: 30 min    Makes: 12

Ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, minced
  • 1/2 cup tomatoes, diced small
  • 1 spoonful of bacon fat or fat of choice
  • 1 cup shredded pork carnitas or other shredded/ground meat
  • 9 eggs
  • 3 Tablespoons heavy cream*
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

*Heavy cream is part of my Paleo way of eating because I’ve learned I can tolerate it, even though I can’t tolerate milk. If you don’t eat it, sub full-fat coconut milk, almond milk, or just leave it out. It adds a bit of fluffiness to the eggs so they aren’t so dense.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F (175C). Line a muffin tin with paper or foil liners. I used silicone muffin cups.
  2. In a skillet over medium heat, soften the onions in the bacon fat for about 5 minutes. When they are translucent, add the tomato and cook on medium until the tomatoes begin to soften. Remove from the heat. Stir in the cooked shredded pork until combined.
  3. Combine the eggs, heavy cream, salt and pepper and beat until combined.
  4. Now it’s time to build the muffins: put a large spoonful of onion/tomato/pork into each cup. Evenly distribute the filling to 12 muffin cups. Sprinkle with a pinch of smoked paprika.
  5. Pour the egg mixture into each cup until about 3/4 of the cup is full.
  6. Bake for about 30 minutes or until fully set. The cups will come out very puffed up and then fall a bit as a they cool. It’s science, yo!
  7. Enjoy with a bit of salsa!

 

BLT Bites with Chipotle Mayo

dsc_0225 copyGrowing up, we used to eat BLT sandwiches a lot and the other day I got a hankering for one, sans bread of course.

What resulted was nothing short of the tastiest thing I’d put in my mouth in a long while.

I used mini muffin tins but you could use regular tins and end up with something bigger than bite-sized. These little morsels were the perfect size for finger food and would be fun party eats. You can make as few or as many as you’d like…it’s really up to you. Depending upon the bacon you use – how thick it’s cut, how wide the pieces are, etc – you may have to adjust your layering technique or the cooking time. Bottom line…have fun with it!

Prep time: 10 min     Cook time: 30 min    Makes: 4 pieces

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
  2. Grease the bottom of one muffin tin and the inside of the cups of the other with a thin layer of coconut oil. Start with one muffin tin upside down.
  3. Cut each strip of bacon in half (again, it depends on the size of the bacon…remember that it’ll shrink when cooked so some overhang is okay). On one of the inverted cups, cross the bacon pieces, one on top of the other. Repeat until you’ve used up all the bacon. See the gallery for a photo.
  4. Now place the other muffin tin on top of the bacon and press down firmly. I weighted mine down with a cast iron skillet.
  5. Bake for about 20-25 minutes. Carefully remove the top muffin tin and bake for 5 more minutes or until the bacon cups are as crisp as you like them.
  6. Let cool and then fill each one with tomato and lettuce and a drizzle of chipotle mayo!

Cinco de Mayo Steak Salad

DSC_0163Living in San Diego, you could say that Cinco de Mayo is a pretty big deal around these parts. All over the city – and pretty much the rest of the US – folks will be gladly using this holiday to eat vast quantities of guacamole and drink lots of tequila. I hate tequila. It all stems back to a Jimmy Buffet concert in October 2008, but I digress. Safe to say, no NorCal margaritas for me!

I made a version of this salad the other day, and it was so punchy with flavor that I had to make it again. And then it hit me! The colors are red, white and green and most of the ingredients are common to Mexican cuisine. In celebration of the Fifth of May, the Battle of Puebla and the love of drinking fermented agave, I bring you this festive salad. Substitute any cooked meat you’d like if you don’t like steak. I topped mine with a pan-fried grassfed New York strip steak sliced thin.

Prep time: 5 min     Cook time: 10 min    Makes: 2-3 cups of salad (plus meat)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup spinach leaves
  • 1 ripe tomato, cubed
  • 1/2 cup jicama, cubed
  • 1/2 an avocado, cubed
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of 1-2 limes
  • 1 tsp Kasandrinos Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste

DSC_0161

Directions:

  1. Combine the spinach, tomato, jicama, avocado and cilantro in a bowl. Squeeze the lime juice on top and drizzle with olive oil. 
  2. Taste and season with salt and pepper if you like.
  3. Top with cooked meat of choice. I used steak, but grilled chicken would be a great alternative!

Note: I earn a small commission if you use the links in this post to purchase the products I’ve featured. I personally use and believe in the products I recommend.

Italian Sausage Ragout

IMG_3876 IMG_3879

I’m all about one-pot cooking because it’s simple and easy with minimal clean-up. Agree?

Originally I intended to make chili, and then this recipe took on a complete mind of its own. Sometimes I do that and the results are often great (and once in a while, completely awful). What I ended up with was neither a stew nor a soup nor was it chili…it doesn’t have the right ingredients to call it that. The best approximation I’ve got is that it’s a very, very hearty meat sauce that’s chock full of veggies. No matter. If you’re looking for one-pot cooking, well, your wish is my command.

Prep time: 5 min     Cook time: 30 min    Makes6+ cups

Ingredients:

  • 2 Italian sausages (read labels carefully, if no clean options available, sub lean ground pork)
  • 1 lb (500 g) lean ground turkey breast (or beef)
  • 2 small zucchini, sliced into quarters
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 large tomato, diced
  • 15 oz can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup prepared pasta sauce (again, read labels)
  • 1/2 cup sliced green or black olives
  • 1 sweet potato, peeled and diced (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp Penzey’s Italian Sausage Seasoning (sub: 1/2 tsp black pepper, 2 tsp ground fennel, 1/2 tsp salt)
  • Coconut oil or fat of choice

Directions

  1. In a large pot over medium-high heat, sauté the turkey breast and Italian sausage which has been removed from the casing until cooked through. Drain any excess fat and move the meat to a separate bowl for the time being.
  2. Prepare the veggies: quarter and slice the zucchini, slice the onion and dice the tomato. Slice the olives and peel / dice the sweet potato.
  3. In the same pot over medium-high heat, add a spoonful of your fat of choice. Add the onion and zucchini and sauté until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients – tomato, fire-roasted diced tomatoes, pasta sauce, olives, sweet potato and spices.
  5. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer, partially covered for about 20 minutes or until the sweet potato is tender.
  6. Tasty over roasted spaghetti squash or just on its own!

Crock Pot Puerco Pibil

IMG_3855

Pork shoulder, citrus and spices come together in this super-easy crock pot dish that I guarantee will be a huge punch of flavor. I adapted the recipe from one I found on a pressure cooker website and had to modify the achiote paste portion using dry ingredients from scratch because I couldn’t find it at my local market. Puerco pibil (roast pork shoulder with achiote and spices) comes from the Yucutan region of Mexico. It’s traditionally cooked in banana leaves but since I didn’t have those (nor did I have a pit to bury it in – the traditional way of cooking puerco pibil) I just threw everything in the crock pot and let it go for about 8 hours on low. The next morning I was greeted with a savory broth and fork tender pork.

Prep time: 10 min     Cook time: 8 hours (crock pot)    Makes: ~4 pounds

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium onion
  • 15 ounce can of diced fire-roasted tomato
  • 2 Tbsp annato powder (sub paprika if you can’t find annato)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • 5 lb (~2.5 kg) pork shoulder roast (I bought two smaller roasts)
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp salt

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, mix the annato, cumin, black pepper, 1 tsp salt and pinch of nutmeg. Stir in a bit of water until the spices have a thick, paste-like consistency. photo-572
  2. Slice the onion and add to a skillet with a spoonful of fat (coconut oil, etc) over medium heat. Cook for a few minutes until translucent, then add the can of tomatoes. Cook for a few more minutes until softened.
  3. Prepare the pork by trimming off any large pieces of external fat (if there is fat on the inside of the meat, most of it will cook out). Slice each roast into long pieces about 1.5″ wide. Season with salt.
  4. In the crockpot, mix the juice of one orange with the cider vinegar. Add the annato / spice paste and stir until dissolved. Lay the pork into the liquid. Top with the tomato / onion mixture.
  5. Cook on low for 6-8 hours (longer is okay, too). Skim the excess fat off the top while it’s still warm or refrigerate and the fat will solidify on top and can be scooped off.
  6. This was delicious with a couple of eggs for breakfast!

Cucumber Tomato Bites

IMG_3688

Every once in a while, I miss crackers and it’s most evident when it comes time for parties or get-togethers. It always seems cheese and crackers and different variations of it are more than plentiful on plates and platters, circulating around and tempting me. These tasty bites use cucumber as the crunchy (cracker-like?) component upon which to pile the rest of the ingredients. In any case, I’m not the brain child behind these (that would be Z), but they’ve gone through a bit of an evolution in the past few weeks and have ended up as a virtual salad in one bite. Z really likes his with goat’s cheese, but if that’s not your thing, I used avocado instead. For a variation, try a toothpick through the top to hold it all together with an olive stuck on top. Makes about 16.

Ingredients:

1 English (seedless) cucumber

8 cherry tomatoes

1/4 of a white or purple onion

1/4 of a ripe avocado

1/2 of a lemon

2 oz (~60 g) soft or hard goat’s cheese, optional

Salt and pepper

Directions:

1. Slice the cucumber into rounds, about 1/8″ thick. You can use a piece as a top and a bottom or just as a base. If using a slice for a top, cut out the middle from those pieces so it will sit on top of the tomato without falling off. Season the cucumber slices with a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Squeeze the lemon juice onto the slices.

2. Next, spread the goat’s cheese on the bottom cucumber slice. If you aren’t using the cheese, add sliced avocado instead.

3. Then, slice thin pieces of onion and add a couple on top of the avocado (or cheese). Raw onion is usually overpowering for me, so I added just a little to give a bit more flavor.

4. Next, slice the tomatoes in half and add it to the stack.

5. Top with another piece of cucumber (or not…after all, it’s your show!). Alternatively, stick a toothpick into the stack and top with an olive.

Pineapple-Avocado Salsa

IMG_3655

Sometimes I get bored of regular salsa, and I’m not one to buy fruit at the market very often – I just don’t fancy it all that much, unless we’re talking about berries in season. Lately, I’ve made a couple of fruit salsas to brighten up some otherwise heavy winter dishes. It’s easy to switch out ingredients, so if you don’t like pineapple then try mango or papaya, for example. This recipe made about 5 cups of salsa and keeps well for 1-2 days.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 of a fresh pineapple
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 large tomato
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, red or green
  • 1/2 of a red bell pepper
  • 1/2 of a red onion
  • 1/2 of a cucumber
  • Juice of two limes
  • Large handful of cilantro
  • Sea salt to taste
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon

Directions:

1. Dice the pineapple, avocado, tomato, bell pepper, onion and cucumber into roughly the same sized pieces. Add to a large mixing bowl.

2. Remove the seeds (or leave them in if you like things spicy) and inner white ribs from the jalapeño pepper. Dice finely. Add to the bowl and then go wash your hands so you don’t get capsacin in your eyes. That would be ouch.

3. Chop the cilantro and add the juice of two limes to the mixture.

4. Add salt and a sprinkle of cinnamon to taste.

5. Let the salsa sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes to let the flavors combine. This goes great with pork, chicken or fish.

Leftover-Turkey Yellow Curry

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Stupid Easy Paleo coming atcha from the beautiful city of Glasgow, Scotland! I’m here visiting for 3 weeks, enjoying the chill of winter (even saw the sun yesterday) and enjoying some R & R. Yesterday we had a lovely Christmas dinner, the centerpiece of which was an amazing 7 lb (3 kg) free-range turkey breast that I picked up for $16 on sale at the last minute on the eve of the 25th. It was delicious, but let me cut to the chase: leftover turkey isn’t my favorite thing. Sure, there is the obvious soup or just reheated slices (blech), but I was looking for something different. A quick spin around the local market found me with basic ingredients to make a fine yellow curry. Feel free to vary the veg (I used what was pretty much on hand) and get creative.

Ingredients:

  • 2 small onions
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 parsnip
  • 1 small sweet potato
  • 1 bell pepper
  • Handful of button mushrooms
  • 14 oz can diced tomato
  • 1/2 can full fat coconut milk
  • 2-3 Tbsp curry powder (to taste)
  • 2 cups cooked diced turkey breast
  • Coconut oil or fat of choice

Directions:

1. Prep all the veggies by dicing into uniform-sized pieces.

2. In a large skillet over medium heat, sauté the onion, carrot, parsnip, sweet potato and bell pepper in coconut oil (or other fat of choice). Cook until the veggies begin to soften.

3. Add mushrooms, diced tomato, coconut milk and curry powder. Simmer for 30 minutes, until the veggies are cooked through.

4. Taste and add more curry powder if not spicy enough and / or more coconut milk if the sauce is too thick.

5. Stir in diced turkey to heat through.

6. Serve with chopped nuts and cilantro on top (for crunch and color). Pouring this over cauliflower rice makes a really hearty, satisfying plate.

Holy Guacamole Salad

guacamole salad

I’ll admit it: I love the Food Network. While I’m more drawn to shows like Chopped! and Iron Chef America, I decided to watch an old episode of Barefoot Contessa yesterday. Normally, Ina’s food isn’t really up my alley but her recipe for Guacamole Salad spoke to me right away. Only bummer…it wasn’t Paleo. A couple of tweaks later, and I had a bowl of amazing flavors and colors sitting in front of me…perfect for a summer cook-out (or just a quiet weeknight at home).

The creaminess of the avocado, tang from the lime and crunch from the Persian cucumbers are the stars of the show! (Persian cucumbers have thinner skin and hardly any seeds…their crunchiness is the reason I used them. If you can’t find them, regular cucumber–peeled and seeded–would be a good replacement).

Prep time: 15 min     Cook time: 0 min    Makes: 4-5 cups

Ingredients:

Salad:

  • 1 pint grape tomatoes
  • 3 Persian cucumbers
  • 1 yellow or orange bell pepper
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 2 large, ripe avocados (I used 3 small)
  • 1 jalapeño pepper (2 if you like spicy)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro

Dressing:

  • Zest from 1 lime
  • 1/3 cup fresh lime juice (about 4 limes)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

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Directions:

1. Prepare the veggies and add to a large mixing bowl:

  • Halve the grape tomatoes.
  • Chop the cucumbers and bell pepper into medium chunks…we are making salad here, not salsa!
  • Chop the red onion into small dice (big chunks of onion = not so bueno).
  • Cut the avocados in half, and remove the pit. Use a spoon to scoop out the entire flesh. Then chop into medium chunks.
  • Chop the garlic and jalapeño finely. Remove the white inner membrane and seeds to control the spiciness.
  • Run your knife through the cilantro a few times to cut the leaves down a bit.

2. Mix all the veggies together and then prepare the dressing.

3. Zest one lime into the bowl.

4. In a measuring cup, combine the fresh lime juice, olive oil, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Mix and pour over the veggies. Toss to coat.

5. Try not to eat the whole bowl! :)