Avocado and Grapefruit Salad with Basil Vinaigrette

Hello May, hello summer food. It's not quite summer yet, but I am diving in to colorful food. I love indulging in seasonal dishes and this salad 100% fits the bill for the current season. 

The avocado and grapefruit combination is delicious, but the star of the show is the basil vinaigrette. The recipe comes from Gaby at What's Gaby Cooking. I've made this a few times and every time I'm reminded that I should make it more. It's amazing as a salad dressing, but also so good over fish, chicken, in replace of pesto, as a marinade, basically anything. I used it as a pizza sauce, so stay tuned for more on that. 

I've been making this salad for lunches and just keeping all of the components sliced and prepped in the fridge so I can toss it all together fresh once lunch time comes. Although, this salad would be great with salmon added to make it more filling or as a side with grilled meats or burgers. 

Avocado and Grapefruit Salad
yields 3-4 servings

1 large grapefruit
1 large hass avocado
5 oz mixed green or spring green lettuce
3 green onions, whites and greens, thinly sliced
Basil Vinaigrette (recipe below)
Maldon salt

Using a small sharp knife, peel your grapefruit. Start from the top and peel down as if you were going from the North to South Pole. Then slice thin rings and then cut each ring into fourths so you get triangular shapes. Then cut your avocado in half short ways. Remove the pit and slice into rings like you did the grapefruit, and then in half. Once your components are all sliced and ready it's time to assembly.

In a large bowl add your greens. Top with your grapefruit segments, avocado slices and green onions. Drizzle over a good portion of the basil vinaigrette. With two large spoons toss until the vinaigrette is incorporated. Top with a sprinkle of Maldon salt and enjoy! 

Basil Vinaigrette original recipe from What's Gaby Cooking 
yields ~1 cup

1 shallot, roughly chopped
2 cups tightly packed fresh basil leaves, stems removed (about 4 ounces)
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1/2 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. salt

Combine all the ingredients in a food processor or high powered blender and until smooth. It will be a little thiner than pesto. Store in a mason jar or sealed tight container. Vinaigrette will stay good for up to 3 days in the fridge.

Serve as a salad dressing, spread on pizza, sandwiches, and wraps or over pasta in replace of pesto. Also great as a marinade for fish or drizzled over the top. 


Sweet Potachos

I ate the whole pan. I thought I would just throw that out there at the beginning to give you a pre-cursor for how amaze these are. I'll also let you know that I thought these would be a huge fail, but they blew my expectations out of the water. Step aside tortilla chips, sweet potatoes just upped you.

Veggie chips can be a little tricky so I did my research to give you the best tips! Cutting your sweet potatoes super thin is key to get them to crisp up and hold all of your toppings. A mandoline makes it so easy, but if you don't have one just do your best to cut them as thin as possible. I'm slightly obsessed with my new mandoline (I got this one from Kuhn Rikon), and it is the main reason I came up with this dish.   I've been looking for any kind of veggie I can slice up thin. I'm weird. 

-slice super thin
-bake on foil lined baking sheets
-coat the foil with oil, toss the sweet potatoes in oil too
-wait to salt until they are done baking
-let them finishing crisping with the oven door propped open and the oven turned off
-if some burn a little, that's even better (in my opinion)!!

Sweet Potato Nachos
serves 1-2 depending on how hungry you are

1 medium sized sweet potato, thinly sliced
olive oil
sea salt
1/2 cup Mexican blend cheese
1/2 avocado, diced
1/2 cup leftover carnitas meat ;)
red onion, cilantro, plain greek yogurt, salsa

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Line 2-3 baking sheets with foil. Pour about 1-2 Tbsp. of olive oil on to each foil lined sheet. Use your hands to spread it around and cover the whole surface.

Using a mandoline or a really sharp knife, thinly slice your sweet potato. Place in a bowl and toss with another tablespoon of oil. Place each piece of sweet potato on a cookie sheet. Make sure they don't overlap or touch. Place all of the cookie sheets in the oven on separate shelves. Bake for 15 minutes, rotating which pan is on top after 8 minutes. Cook the last 7 minutes. Pull the sheets out and flip over all of your sweet potato chips. Sprinkle with a little bit of salt then place back in the oven. Turn off the oven and crack open the door. Let the chips dry out for about 20 minutes. 

Once your chips are crispy, pull them out and load onto a small baking sheet. I used my toaster oven because it is small and perfect for one batch of nachos. Layer the chips in an even layer, then sprinkle on half of the cheese. Top with the carnitas meat and then the rest of the cheese. Broil for about 5-10 minutes until your cheese is melting. Pull out and top with diced red onion, cilantro, avocado, salsa and plain greek yogurt as a sour cream replacement. 

Snap pictures of these to your friends and make them really jealous. 

My roommate took one bite, and said "ya, you need to make those a lot." I have another sweet potato in my pantry just waiting to be mandolined and made into sweet potatchos. 



G-O-O-D M-O-R-N-I-N-G good morning, what what, good morning! We used to sing this good morning song all the time at summer camp growing up. I still sing it. I love the morning. I've gushed about my love for this time of day before. Monday was a good morning. With no work for sis and I, we decided a breakfast date was in order. We opted to not go out, but instead stay in and watch Hoda and Kathy Lee on the couch. Something that never happens now that work is a thing. 

Here's a glimpse at my breakfast inspiration. I wanted to bake something fancy to kick off Kat's birthday week, but my girl Ina always says, if you slave all day in the kitchen no one will enjoy it, especially you. When having guests over she always cooks a few things and buys a few things. Homemade almond butter and avocado to top our toast, with fresh figs and pears to snack on between bites!

Here's a "toast" to the morning, cheers! I love you a.m.

Nutri Bowl

Tuesday night's dinner is the result of Wednesday morning's post. Quinoa, kale, avocado, red onion, grilled chicken and figs make up this little power bowl. It might look like hippie food, but it is mighty tasty. 

Not to brag, but this was also whipped up in the dorm kitchen! *pat on the back*

Nutri Bowl
serves one

1/4 cup cooked quinoa
2 cups of kale
1 small grilled chicken breast, sliced
1/4 small red onion, sliced
2 figs, quartered
dressing (any kind of balsamic or mustard vinaigrette)* 
salt and pepper to taste

Cook your quinoa according to your package's directions. While it's cooking slice your chicken, figs, onions and avocado. As the quinoa is finishing cooking, throw your kale and vinaigrette in at the last minute to warm it up and combine it with the quinoa. Decorate with the sliced chicken, veggies and figs. Sprinkle with salt and pepper if you choose!

*I stumbled into this little olive oil shop in Capitol Hill last Sunday. I'm a huge fan of free samples, so I walked around the whole store for about 10 minutes sampling all the different olive oils and balsamic vinegars with little cubes of bread and popcorn. I then sampled this amazing mustard sauce. It was a tarragon dijon mustard and actually one of the better things I've ever tasted. I made and impulse purchase and walked out happy. 

I've been dipping all kinds of things in it and mixing it with a little oil to make a vinaigrette for my salads. I think this made my nutri bowl extra delish but I promise it will still be good with any kind of dressing you use.