Especially when paired with a chilled soup or savory crostini.
Trending grains like quinoa.
Unique texture like seaweed wakame.
Or redefined classics like a layered Cobb Salad
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Layered Cobb Salad
3 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 small garlic clove, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
For the salad:
3 skinless boneless chicken breast halves
1 head romaine, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide slices (8 cups)
2 California avocados
6 bacon slices, cooked until crisp, drained, and finely chopped
2 to 3 oz Roquefort, crumbled (1/2 to 3/4 cup)
2 bunches watercress, coarse stems discarded
2 hard-boiled large eggs, halved and forced through a coarse sieve
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh chives
Whisk together all dressing ingredients except oil in a bowl, then add oil in a slow stream, whisking until emulsified.
Bring 5 cups water to a simmer in a 2-quart saucepan, then simmer chicken, uncovered, 6 minutes. Remove pan from heat and cover, then let stand until chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes. Transfer chicken to a cutting board and cool completely. Cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Halve, pit, and peel avocados, then cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Spread romaine over bottom of a 6- to 8-quart glass bowl and top with an even layer of chicken. Sprinkle bacon over chicken, then continue layering with tomatoes, cheese (to taste), avocados, watercress, eggs, and chives. Just before serving, pour dressing over salad and toss.
for something freshly unique…
Wakame and Cucumber Salad
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon yellow miso paste
1 tablespoon finely grated ginger
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
salt for seasoning to taste
6 thinly sliced, small Persian cucumbers
(or 1 large seedless cucumber)
2 thinly sliced scallions
Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil. Add wakames seaweed and remove the saucepan from the heat; let stand until softened, 20 minutes. Drain the wakame, rinse under cold water and pat dry. Remove any tough ribs from the wakame and thinly slice. In a medium bowl, whisk rice vinegar with lime juice, yellow miso paste and ginger, along with honey. Whisk in vegetable oil and toasted sesame oil and season with salt. Add the wakame along with cucumbers and scallions and toss well. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds and serve.
For other info on harvested seaweed: shesellsseaweed.com
Trending quinoa + black beans and red peppers = fabulous!
Santa Fe Quinoa Salad
1 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
6 tablespoons vegetable oil
Freshly ground pepper
One 15-ounce can black beans, rinsed
1 small red bell pepper, finely diced
1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro
One 3-ounce jar cocktail onions, drained and chopped
In a medium saucepan, combine the quinoa, water and a pinch of salt; bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat until the water is absorbed, about 15 minutes. Spread the quinoa on a baking sheet.
Refrigerate for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, toast the cumin seeds over high heat, shaking the pan, until fragrant, about 2 minutes; transfer to a blender. Add the lime juice and oil and blend. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the dressing into a bowl and add the black beans, bell pepper, cilantro and cocktail onions.
Scrape the quinoa into the bowl, season with salt and pepper and serve.
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