Saturday, July 11, 2009

Creamy Cauliflower Salad

Alrighty- now before you write this one off, lemme tell you a bit about the circumstances... First off, I am well on my way out of my first trimester of pregnancy. As most previously pregnant women know, cravings can be killers. You HAVE TO HAVE what you WANT- RIGHT NOW! Well, a few days ago, my craving was for chicken and cream cheese enchiladas. (No worries- I will post that recipe next!) So- I made them for dinner! While the enchiladas were in the oven, I was reminded of a ladies only dinner party I was supposed to be attending. The theme? SALAD. CRAP CRAPITY CRAPUMS! I wasn't gonna be able to have my enchiladas! So I grabbed my salad and ran for the door, wish my husband and two kids happy enchilada eating. I was pretty bummed about having salad for dinner- until I took a bite of this salad. Oh. My. GOSH! This salad is so creamy and yummy and amazing, I hounded the poor woman who brought it until she PROMISED to send me the recipe. When I got home, the recipe was in my email inbox. (Thanks Marilyn!) Now the real kicker? It's main ingredient is one of my LEAST FAVORITE ingredients in the WORLD. I HATE the stuff! So does my husband. And my kids! But we ALL love this salad. It is so good, I actually forced myself to buy a large jar of the gastly ingredient just so I can make this salad more often... Now, on with the recipe.

The ingredients:

3/4 c. miracle whip
1/2 c. ranch dressing
1/4 c. grated parm cheese (you can use the kind you shake from a can, but I used the grated stuff from the deli--either way works)
1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. chopped red onion
8 oz. crumbled cooked bacon
1 head cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
6 c. torn lettuce

The instructions:
Mix all ingredients but the last two. Once fully incorporated, toss lightly with the cauliflower and lettuce. Serve immediately as the lettuce will wilt the longer the dressing is on it.


Friday, July 10, 2009

Vanilla Panna Cotta

I can honestly say I have never had panna cotta before this. And I am SO SAD to have missed out on such a great cool treat! Seriously! It is SO GOOD! It is light, creamy, mild, and very refreshing. This recipe was originally given to me by a lady I know (Thanks Jeri!), and though I tweaked it a bit, the recipe is still just as fabulous!

The ingredients:
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tsp vanilla
1/4 heaping cup sugar
1 (1/4 oz.) packet unflavored gelatin

The Instructions:
1. Put 3 tbsp. water in a small bowl, pour gelatin over the top and mix. Let the gelatin dissolve in the water.
2. Heat sugar, milks and cream in a saucepan until sugar dissolves (don't boil or let it get too hot).
3. Add gelatin to milk/cream mixture and whisk to make sure it is completely incorporated with no lumps. Add vanilla.

4. Let mixture sit for 15 minutes.

5. Divide cream mixture between 4-5 ramekins (or other serving dishes). Place in fridge until set- may take up to 6 hours so plan ahead!

6. Serve with fresh fruit ( 2 cups cleaned, prepared fruit, mixed with 1/4c. sugar-- refridgerate for 2 or more hours), or jam/fruit syrup. (I used some homemade raspberry jam for some, and apricot syrup for others. Both were FANTASTIC!)

To serve you can either leave it in the ramekin or place serving dish by running a butter knife around the edge before inverting it onto the plate. (Thanks to Jeri for the pictures!)