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Sales, Menus and Recipes: Salad Days

11 July 2019  
Salad Days

Recently I was reading a book set in 1920’s Australia, in the summer. I was struck by two things. One was the amazing changes brought by the proliferation of refrigerators. All of a sudden you could cook in the mornings and eat the food cool in the evenings. You could make your own ice, ice cream, sorbet and other frozen treats. And you could keep salad ingredients cold, crisp and unspoiled. The characters in the book dined daily on cold meats and salads, one of the most common being Salad Russe. I had heard oh Salad Russe, but this inspired me to look it up.

Salad Russe was invented in the 1860’s by a Chef Olivier, at a prominent Moscow restaurant. The salad became known as salad Olivier. It was extremely popular and travelers brought it back to Europe where it became known as Russian Salad or Salad Russe. It always included potatoes, but originally also contained such delicacies as cold grouse, caviar, andsmoked duck. The dressing was a closely guarded secret, but was known to be a mayonnaise with french wine vinegar, Provançal olive oil, mustard and some secret ingredients.

As the dish traveled around the world it lost most of its’ exotic ingredients but always kept the potatoes, cold meat or seafood, pickles and mayo based dressing. Many versions, especially in the Caribbean, contain beets. It has been adapted to the foods available.

So in honor of the hot dry days we are seeing now, and the monsoon we hope to be seeing soon, we are concentrating this week on salads and other cool foods like sorbet, cool drinks, and jelled molds.

Foodie Notes: I saw something new today at Sprouts. Frozen Pomegranate Arils. The Arils are the fleshy bits with the seeds in them. It always seems too tedious to remove them from one pomegranate. I think you could freeze them yourself when pomegranates are plentiful. Here’s how to get the seeds out.

Just remove the arils, dry, spread out on a plastic or foil covered baking sheet, freeze, package in heavy duty freezer bags.

In the mean time, look for them in Sprouts frozen fruit section.

Special Sales this Week

Fry’s—Buy 5 or more Save $5 (participating items only) Good Deals include—Fritos, Cheetos and Sun Chips $1.99/bag, selected Kellog cerreals $1.49/box and select Rubbermaid Food Storage $1.99/each. You can get 2 extra fuel points on all Simple Truth and Private Selection items (with digital coupon, no coupon, ask the checker)

Safeway—This Week’s special Digital just for U coupon is for B/S Chicken Breasts from the Butcher Counter $.99/lb., first 10 lb. There is a $5 Friday sale this week, including fresh Pineapple, Cantaloupe, personal size Watermelon for $1.67 each and Hot Wings or Chicken Tenders $5/lb.

Also there is a Fab 5 Sale featuring items like pasta, pasta sauce and olives for $.99/each and Talenti Gelato for $2.99.

Sprouts—Better for You Brands Sale, 35% off selected brands, watch for shelf tags. And as always, Wednesday is double ad savings day, both last week’s and this week’s ads are in force on Wednesday.

Special Days This Week

July 10—Piña Colada Day and Cashew Day
July 11—Ranier Cherries Day and Blueberry Muffins Day
July 12—Jello Day (You have to look at this picture. Who knew Jello could look so stunning?)
July 13—French Fry Day (Where are your favorite Fries in Prescott?)
July 16—Corn Fritters Day

This Week It’s All Salads and Sides. Plus a few Cold Soups (and of course Desserts.)

Salads

Salad Russe
Spinach and Grilles Chicken
Tomato Aspic
Michigan Salad
Avocado Chicken Salad
Jello Salad
Green Salad Plus

Cool Soups

Gazpacho
Cucumber with Coconut Milk and Lime
Vichyssoise

Sides

(Something tasty and Crunchy goes well with salads)
Corn Fritters
Garlic Toast

Desserts

Strawberry Soup
Frozen Fruit Sorbet

Videos and Recipes

Salads

Salad Russe
Also known as Olivier Salad.

Australian Style

A Basic European Style

Haitian Version

In Haiti and many other places it includes beets.

Spinach and Grilled Chicken Salad

A composed Dinner Salad

Tomato Aspic

Jelled Salad. Aspics of various kinds used to be very popular. One main advantage is that the work happens way before they are served. Buy the highest quality tomato juice you can, or make your own. o Many different things can be put in an aspic. Other worthy add ins, green peas, avocado slices, matchsticks of cooked ham, small cooked shrimp, thawed green peas, finely chopped green onions, diced ham or cooked chicken… You could use 100% tomato juice in this recipe, but the cranberry adds some flavor and a lot of color.

Michigan Salad

This is not our usual sort of video, made more for institutional use, but it was the only one i could find. The one thing that distinguishes this salad from others is the use of dried cherries, (although dried cranberries could also be used.)

Avocado Chicken Salad

Great as an entrée salad, or for lunch. Try some blueberries sprinkled on top.

Jello Salad

I am sure you all know not to put fresh pineapple in jello. It keeps it from jelling. Try mixing in some blueberries.

Green Salad Plus

  • One of my favorite flavor combos—Avocado, Blue Cheese and Bacon
  • Use your favorite greens—Romaine, Butter and Arugula make a nice mix.
  • Add cherry tomatoes, sliced in half, diced cucumber and diced bell pepper.
  • If this is a salad meal, add torn or diced cooked chicken.

Toss (carefully, don’t let all the veggies migrate to the bottom)

Now crumble blue cheese over. Add as much bacon as you like (bigger chunks are better than crumbles) and slices of avocado.

Dress with olive oil and a bit of good balsamic vinegar.

Top with a few croutons or broken crostini.

Soups

Gazpacho

A good version, all fresh veggies, no tomato juice!

Cucumber with Coconut Milk and Lime

Vichyssoise

The ultimate cold soup. Like this version. Not fussy.

Desserts

Strawberry Soup

Frozen Fruit Sorbet

Home Made Fruit Sorbet

These delicious frozen fruit concoctions are easy to make. All it takes is some frozen fruit, some simple syrup, maybe a flavoring, and a food processor or blender. The Domestic Geek provides the exact instructions in her video here:

First you will need to make a simple syrup. In a small sauce pan, add 1 cup of white sugar to 1/2 cup of water. Heat on medium, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is totally dissolved. Let cool completely before using in the sorbet. The sorbets typically use only a couple of Tablespoons per recipe. Save any remaining syrup in a jar with a lid and store in the fridge.

You could use artificial sweeteners dissolved in water but, In addition to sweetness, the sugar serves a chemical purpose, helping give the sorbet the correct texture. So if you use artificial sweeteners the texture may change.

The general directions are the same for all flavors—Put all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Pulse until smooth. Eat now or freeze for an hour or two, or until the texture suits you. You can add nuts or other mix-ins when the sorbet is soft, mini chocolate chips anyone. Experiment with proportions and extras such as Greek Yoghurt.

All flavors use 4 cups of frozen fruit. Use commercial frozen fruit or freeze your own on a plastic or foil covered baking sheet. Berries can be frozen whole. Pineapple, mango, peaches, pears, apples, melons and cucumber should be cut into at least medium sized chunks first. Freeze until totally frozen.

If you decide you may want to do this often, cut up extra fruit, freeze and store frozen in 4 cup amounts.

When the sorbet is almost done processing, taste a little to see if you’d like more sugar. If you are using vanilla extract or almond extract or any other flavoring, start small, only 1/4-1/2 teaspoon at first, then taste. You can always add a little more. Some flavoring suggestions—Mint, either extract or a couple of fresh leaves; Spices, cinnamon, cloves, allspice etc; Maybe go wild with some dark chocolate syrup and a hint of chili in a base of frozen strawberries.

Here are some combinations from the Domestic Geek. If you like these, you may be interested in her book, Meals Made Easy:

Mixed Berry
4 cups mixed frozen berries (you can use all strawberries if you like)
2-3 Tablespoons sorbet syrup

Pina Colada
4 Cups frozen fresh pineapple chunks
1/4 cup coconut milk
2-3 Tablespoons sorbet syrup
1 small lime, zest and juice
Mix in as much flaked coconut as you like after processing

Peach Basil
4 cups frozen peaches
2-3 Tablespoons sorbet syrup
2-3 basil leaves, torn if large

Cucumber Melon
3 cups frozen Honeydew Melon chunks
1 cup frozen hothouse cucumber chunks
2-3 Tablespoons sorbet syrup

Cherry Vanilla
4 cups frozen cherries (make sure they are totally without pits, if using commercial frozen cherries, be alert to stop processing and check for pits if you hear a loud rattling sound)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract.
2-3 Tablespoons sorbet syrup


Items On Sale This Week

Meat & Seafood

Shrimp—$5.99/lb (2 lb bag) @Safeway, cooked tail on 51-60 ct. $7.99/lb @Sprouts, wild, jumbo, raw, $9.99/lb @Sprouts, Collosl, cooked.
Salmon—$9.99/lb @Sprouts, wild, fresh, Alaskan, Sockeye, fillet.
Fish—$5.99/lb @Fry’s, Catfish or Tilapia, fresh farm raised.
BS Chicken—$.99/lb @Safeway, with Digital Coupon, $2.49/lb W/O Coupon. $2.99/lb, @Sprouts, tenders or thighs.
Steaks—$5/lb @Safeway, Fri Only, T-Bone and New York. 8.99/lb @Sprouts, top sirloin fillet. 6.97/lb @Fry’s, Strip steaks, boneless
Pork Chops—$1.47/lb @Safeway, Assorted. $2.99/lb @Sprouts, bone in, center cut
Pork Tenderloins—BOGO @Fry’s.

Deli & Dairy

Ham—$7.99/lb @Fry’s, in Deli, Private Selection
Deli Chicken—$5.99/each @Safeway, Whole. $6.99/each @Sprouts, 8 pc baked.
Deli Meats—$5/lb (Fry Only) @Safeway, London Broil or Angus Beef, $5.99/lb @Safeway, Primo Taglio, Turkey, Ham, Chicken. $8.99/lb @Sprouts, Roast Beef or Pastrami, sliced and prepackaged.
Cheese—$3.99/lb @Sprouts, Colby/Jack or Imported Swiss. $5/lb (Fri Only) @Safeway, Swiss
Eggs—$.97/dz @Safeway, Lucerne, Clip or Click, limit 2.


Fruits and Vegetables

Blueberries—$1.25/6 oz box (Fri Only) @Safeway. $2.98/6 oz box @Sprouts (O), $2.98/18 oz pkg @Sprouts. $2.50/6 0z box @Fry’s.
Strawberries—$2.98/1 lb box @Sprouts, (O). $2.50/1 lb pkg @Fry’s
Raspberries—$2.50/6 oz box @Sprouts. $2.50/box @Fry’s.
Blackberries—$@2.50/5.6 oz box @Sprouts. $2.50/box @Fry’s
Red Cherries—$.85/lb @Sprouts. $.97/lb @Safeway. $.87/lb @Fry’s
Grapes—$1.98.lb @Sprouts, (O), red, green. $2.99/lb @Fry’s, red, green, black. $2.99/lb @Safeway, (O), red, green.
Yellow Peaches or Nectarines—$.98/lb @ Sprouts
White Peaches or Nectarines or Plums—$1.99/lb @Safeway
Cantaloupes—$1.50/each @Sprouts. $1.67/each (Fri Only) @Safeway. $2/each @Fry’s
Pineapple—$1.67/each (Fri Only) @Safeway
Personal Watermelon—$1.67/each (Fri Only) @Safeway

Greens—$1.50/bag @Safeway, Spinach. $2.50/bag @Sprouts, Sprouts Brand Salad Mixes.
Tomatoes—$.98/lb @Sprouts, Hothouse Tomatoes. $2.50/10.5 oz @Safeway, Cherub.
Potatoes, red, gold—$.99/lb @Safeway. $2.98/3 lb bag @Sprouts, (O). $2.99/1.5 lb bag @Fry’s, gourmet
Cucumbers—$.88/each @Sprouts, hothouse. $.50/each @Safeway, regular.
Bell Peppers—$.50/each @Safeway, green.
Cauliflower—$.99/lb @Safeway
Asparagus—$.98/lb @Fry’s
Packaged Asparagus, Broccolini or Squash Planks—BOG2 @Safeway
Brissels Sprouts—$.98/lb @Sprouts
Sweet Corn—$1/8 ears @Sprouts

Other Good Bargains

Nuts—$3.99/lb @Sprouts, Walnut halves and pieces, $7.99/lb @Sprouts, Pecan Halves
Almond Milk—BOGO @Sprouts, Almond Breeze
Ice Cream—$1.67/64 fl oz (clip or Click) @Safeway, Bluebell, limit 4. $1.99/48 oz( Buy 5 sale) @Fry’s, Dreyer’s.
Frozen Veggies—$.99/each (Fab 5) @Safeway, Safeway Select.
2 Ltr Sodas—$.77/each when you buy 4 @Fry’s, Coke, Pepsi, 7up
Mayo—$1.99/jar (on buy 5 sale) @Fry’s, Kraft
Chips—$1.77/bag (Buy 5 sale) @Fry’s, Doritos or Ruffles

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Cindy LaMaster