Buy your salad dressing sometimes, but make your salad dressing sometimes too! And when you do, make this super tasty Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing! @cookinRD | sarahaasrdn.com

Creamy Cilantro Lime Dressing

I’m not going to lie to you, I do buy my salad dressing. There just happen to be a few that I really like and so I keep them on hand. But, I will tell you this, I REALLY like homemade salad dressing. I sure do and right now I’m really loving this Creamy Cilantro Lime Salad Dressing.

Read More

No Fail, Winning Guacamole Recipe

Award* Winning Guacamole Recipe

*Disclaimer – this recipe hasn’t actually won any official awards or titles. And it hasn’t been entered in any recipe contests or been featured on the Food Network.  So my guacamole is technically “award-less,” however it’s unofficially a “winner” (hence, Winning Guacamole) in my small circle of nearest and dearest. And I’m about to let you in on my not-so-secret recipe! But first, there are some things you should know.

Guacamole 101: What You Need to Know

  • Pick the Avocado – This is a big deal, so it’s imperative you get it right. How do you choose the right avocado? Depends on when you want to make your guacamole. If you don’t need it until a couple of days from now, it’s ok to buy the rock-solid avocado because it will continue to ripen. If you want it tonight, buy the one that gives just a little when you apply a light pressure to it. Skip the super soft ones and the ones with dents and dings.
  • Don’t Skip the Onion – So many people tell me they want to leave out the onion, but I encourage you not to do that. Instead, if onion causes you trouble, consider this little trick – chop it and then add it to a bowl of water. Let it sit there while you’re making the guacamole and then drain it and add it. Soaking the onion will help remove some of the bitter compounds, so you won’t have that pungent onion taste in your mouth.
  • Add salt – Every time I make this guacamole someone always asks, “why does this taste so good?” It’s not that I am an awesome guacamole maker or that I have a special guacamole secret, it’s just salt. Yes, you heard me, salt. If you don’t add the right amount, it’ll just taste like mashed avocados and onion. Add the salt, and you’ve become a culinary genius! Afraid of salt, it’s ok, I understand, but in this recipe I’m only using 1/4 teaspoon of salt and that equals to about 145 milligrams of sodium per serving. That’s a relatively small amount considering 2300 milligrams per day is your cutoff. 

There, now you’re armed and dangerous. Time to get to the store and stock up on avocados so you can make a big batch of my No Fail Winning Guacamole!

Guacamole

Guacamole

Guacamole

Guacamole

 

Print

No Fail, Winning Guacamole


  • Author: Sara Haas

Description

A recipe for delicious guacamole that works every time!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced in half and seeded
  • 2 teaspoons -1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeño, finely chopped*
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped white or yellow onion**

Instructions

  1. Scoop out the avocado flesh into a bowl and gently mash. Stir in the lime juice and salt. Mix in the cilantro, onion and jalapeño.
  2. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  • *If you prefer your guacamole less spicy, remove and discard the seeds and membrane from the jalapeño before chopping. Careful, those seeds are hot, so best to remove them with a spoon or knife.
  • **Do raw onions bother you? Try soaking them in water first before adding them to your guacamole.
  • Makes about 1 cup guacamole.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 339
  • Sugar: 3
  • Sodium: 608
  • Fat: 30
  • Saturated Fat: 4
  • Unsaturated Fat: 23
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 21
  • Protein: 5
  • Cholesterol: 0

Black Bean Salad with Honey Lime Vinaigrette

Well, it’s officially September and it’s blazing saddles here in Chicago. That means it’s time to be creative in the kitchen. Read, “how can I cook without cooking?” Luckily, Mother Nature is on our side during the warmer months, providing us with a wealth of fresh produce that requires very little preparation. How kind of Her! So, to keep the sweat at bay, I created this hearty bean salad that’s both refreshing and satisfying.

If you’ve got a can opener and a knife, you’re all set for this recipe. Just pop open a couple of cans of beans, then chop up some fresh veggies and you’ve pretty much got this dish made. Lots of beans and veggies means you know it’s good for you, which is just an added bonus, really. Then, to jazz it all up a bit, I’ve created a tangy, yet sweet vinaigrette made from fresh lime juice and zest as well as honey, mustard and olive oil. That’s it! So easy, just like I promised.

Serve up a big bowl of this tonight for dinner and save the rest to munch on during the week. This salad tastes even better after a day or two in the fridge.

P.S. – If you’re not in the mood to cook an ear of fresh corn, you can substitute thawed corn or canned corn. See, so easy!

IMG_0003

 

IMG_0001

 

IMG_0004

 

IMG_0005

 

IMG_0006

Print

Black Bean Salad with Honey-Lime Vinaigrette


  • Author: Sara Haas

Description

This delightfully healthy dish comes together fast and it not only looks beautiful, but tastes great too.


Scale

Ingredients

For the salad

  • 1 ear of fresh corn, shucked and cleaned (or about 1 cup corn kernels)
  • 1 can (15 ounce) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (15 ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained (or any other bean will work here too)
  • 1 red or yellow bell pepper, seeded, stemmed and diced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded, stemmed and diced
  • 1/2 medium red onion, peeled and diced
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and diced (optional)

For the dressing

  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 lime, zested and juiced
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • sea salt, to taste

Instructions

To prepare the salad

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the corn and return to a boil. Cook for 5 minutes, then drain and rinse the corn under cold water to stop the cooking process. Pat dry and when cool enough to touch, cut kernels from the cob and add to a large serving or mixing bowl.
  2. To the same bowl with the corn, add the beans, peppers, onion, cilantro and jalapeño, if you’re using it. Toss to combine.

For the dressing

  1. In a small mixing bowl, combine the mustard, lime zest, lime juice and honey. Whisk in the olive oil.

To serve

  1. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss to evenly coat the beans and vegetables. Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour. Toss again before serving.

Notes

  • This recipe makes between 7 1/2 and 8 cups salad.
  • You don’t have to let this salad sit in the fridge before digging in, but it does taste so much better when you do!

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 8
  • Calories: 201
  • Sugar: 7
  • Sodium: 140
  • Fat: 10
  • Saturated Fat: 1
  • Unsaturated Fat: 8
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 25
  • Protein: 6
  • Cholesterol: 0

Watermelon Cooler with Basil Lime Simple Syrup

Bored with water? While I never tire of it, I know there are plenty of people out there who do. My advice? Make yourself a pitcher of what I call “fancy water” or simply water that’s been flavored. Yes, pretty fancy indeed. To make your experience with fancy water fun, I’ve come up with a recipe that’s perfectly light and refreshing. Watermelon is a great base and the simple syrup is a sophisticated little addition that’s sure to please the adult palate.

But don’t forget the kids! They like this one too and you can skip the simple syrup if you don’t want the added sugar. Just prepare as described below and toss in some crushed ice and shake it in a glass until it’s kind of fizzy on top. Your kids will think you’re pretty cool…or not, but who cares because they’ll drink it up regardless!

IMG_8403

 

IMG_0043

 

IMG_8399

 

IMG_8398

 

IMG_8396

Print

Watermelon Cooler with Basil Lime Simple Syrup


  • Author: Sara Haas

Description

The perfect drink to cool you off on a hot day. Fresh watermelon is blended smooth and sweetened with a light touch of lime and basil infused simple syrup.


Scale

Ingredients

For the simple syrup

  • 3/4 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 lime, zested
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water

For the watermelon cooler

  • 3 cups diced, seedless watermelon
  • 1 cup water

Instructions

For the simple syrup

  1. Place the basil and lime zest in a bowl.
  2. Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and set over medium-high heat. Let mixture come to a boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and pour over the basil and lime zest. Let cool.

For the watermelon

  1. Place the watermelon in a blender and pulse a few times. Add the water and puree until smooth. Work in batches if necessary.

For the cooler

  1. Pour the watermelon mixture into glasses. Add 1-2 teaspoons of the simple syrup. Stir, add ice and serve.

Notes

  • Makes about 3 cups.
  • There will be extra simple syrup. Store it covered in the fridge and use it to mix into still or sparkling water.
  • You can a little more water to dilute for a milder watermelon flavor.
  • Add jalapeno slices to the simple syrup for a little kick.

Nutrition

  • Calories: 338
  • Sugar: 79
  • Sodium: 18
  • Fat: 1
  • Saturated Fat: 0
  • Unsaturated Fat: 0
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 86
  • Protein: 3
  • Cholesterol: 0