Archives for posts with tag: #Salad

This Mediterranean Salad is one of the most easy and beautiful I’ve made. The colors and flavors are spectacular. It is made with fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, olives, red onion, feta and herbs.

This is a Greek inspired salad but I made it for a tropical themed party we had recently and know I made an excellent choice. The tomatoes combined with olive oil and vinegar added zest. While the cucumbers added crunch and the feta the perfect, tangy–saltiness for all the flavors from the Greek Isles.

Mediterranean Salad


1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

2-3 large cucumbers, peeled and diced

1/2 red onion, diced

1 9.5 ounce jar Kalamata olives, pitted and sliced, such as Mezzetta Olives

1 6 ounce can green olives, pitted and sliced, such as Early California

12 ounce feta cheese cubed, such as Belfiore Mediterranean Style Feta in Brine

1/2 cup olive oil

1/3 cup red or white wine vinegar

3 TBSP fresh oregano, chopped

3 TBPS fresh Italian Parsley

1 small lemon, juiced and zested

Salt and Ground Pepper to taste


  1. Add all the diced and sliced veggies and olives to a large bowl.
  2. Whisk the olive oil, vinegar, juice from the lemon, lemon zest, fresh oregano, parsley, salt and pepper to in another bowl until thoroughly combined.
  3. Add the liquid to the veggies and olives and mix well.
  4. Top the salad with the feta cubes and serve.

Note: This can be made up to up to 4 hours ahead and refrigerated until ready to serve!

Enjoy! Jill XOXO

Food is obviously important for nutritional reasons. We clearly need it to survive but it is also meaningful for social reasons.

Many of us have fond food memories that remind us of a person, place or thing. Food is nostalgic and part of most celebrations with family and friends. It is also tied to cultures and regions. Certain spices, produce or cooking techniques are associated with different countries and parts of the world.

What is your favorite food memory? For me, it is making Carrot Cake from scratch with my grandmother when I was about 5 years old. It is tamales on Christmas Eve. Or, it is Gumbo, Crawfish or Beignets for Mardi Gras and Corned Beef and Cabbage on St. Patrick’s Day.

Cooking my spouse, children, friends and family’s favorite foods and desserts for their birthday, holiday or just because is one of my greatest expressions of love.

Enjoy! XOXO Jill

Salads do not need to be boring! In fact, they can not only be healthy but delicious, colorful and an introduction to some new seasonal vegetables or fruits. Salads can be an accompaniment to a full dinner or it can be the main course. There are many different types of salads making the choices endless. My kids favorite is Caesar Salad with my homemade croutons. Mine is Caprese Salad with fresh Mozzarella or anything with spinach or kale and my spouse enjoys a Wedge with Blue Cheese.

Baby Gems with Squash Blossoms, Cucumber, Yellow Tomatoes and Buttermilk Dressing


1 bag of Baby Gems or 1 or 2 heads of Butter Leaf Lettuce, washed and drained

2 cups small squash blossoms, stems removed, divided

6 ounces pancetta or 3 slices bacon, fried (this can be omitted for a Vegetarian recipe)

1/4 cup sunflower seeds (or more depending on your preference)

1 cucumber, halved and then sliced

1 pint of yellow cherry tomatoes or assorted (tomatoes should be left out for a Keto recipe)

Edible flowers (these can be hard to find and optional)

Buttermilk Dressing:

2 garlic cloves, smashed

Salt and ground pepper, to taste

3 TBSP mayonnaise

3 TBSP sour cream

1 TBSP white wine vinegar

1/2 cup buttermilk (use 2% Sugar Greek Yogurt as a substitute for Keto)


  1. Make the salad dressing. Smash the garlic and add a pinch of salt. Then, mash it into a paste. In a bowl (or glass jar), whisk together the garlic with the remaining ingredients until completely smooth. Season with salt and ground pepper. Set aside.
  2. If using the pancetta or bacon, add it to a saucepan and cook until crisp. You’ll want to break up the bacon into small bite sizes. Reserve the fat (do not drain).
  3. Chop or tear the lettuce into bite size pieces and add to the bottom of a large salad bowl.
  4. Slice the cucumber and cut the cherry tomatoes in half. Scatter over the lettuce.
  5. Next, the pancetta or bacon (in it’s fat) can be spread over the salad items.
  6. Drizzle the buttermilk dressing on top. Then, add the squash blossoms and sunflower seeds. The edible flowers will be the last item added.

This recipe will serve 4 to 6. It can be a side salad or complete dinner if you add grilled chicken or steak on top.

Enjoy! XOXO Jill