Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Pinterest Cookbook: Picnic Edition

So with all of this wacky warm weather we're having out here (sorry if you live anywhere other than the West Coast right now!  I wish we were getting some weather here!!), I have picnics and barbecues on the mind.  Hopefully one of these sides can fool you into thinking you're having Spring weather :)

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You should know that I am not a fan of traditional heavy picnic sides.  I actually think potato salad is pretty gross--I know.  I'd be kicked out of the south.  But sometimes you just need a good side, and this Dreamfields Summer Pasta Broccoli Salad from Doughmestic is AMAZING.  We use turkey bacon instead of real bacon, but I imagine it would be even more heavenly if you didn't cop out like me.  I am also thinking of trying greek yogurt instead of mayo this summer, because I finally hopped on that bandwagon.  I'm pretty sure I cut the sugar way down, or left it out, and it was just fine.  But I know we way over-cheesed it, so that should balance any accidental health benefits.  Super light, and I love red wine vinegar (actually, I have a vinegar problem--have you ever been to a gourmet olive oil/vinegar tasting?! Better than wine.  Ok, not better than wine, but those little pieces of bread are a great way to soak up some wine and allow you to keep going!).  I declare it the perfect pasta salad!
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I'm also not a huge coleslaw fan, but we made popcorn shrimp the other night, and Tommy declared it to be the perfect side, so who am I to argue?  I browsed Pinterest until I found one that sounded good, and the apples and sweet peppers in this Apple Cole Slaw from Allrecipes caught my eye. Again, I might try greek yogurt instead of mayo next time, but it had a similar light and sweet flavor.  Both of these recipes are the kind of thing where you keep going back and picking a piece out of the bowl here and there as you clean up the kitchen, and then realize you have no leftovers after all.  No?  Just me?
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We ate this Cucumber Tomato Feta Salad from Local Kitchen at least once a week every week last summer, and pretty regularly all winter long.  Like I said, I love olive oil and vinegars, and who doesn't love feta?  Cucubmers, cherry or grape tomatoes, and red onions have totally become our farmer's market veggie staples, and we end up using this same combination on everything-pita pizzas, on top of spinach for a regular salad, in wraps.  Kind of obsessed.  It definitely doesn't need the sugar on a regular basis, and we skip basil if  we don't have any fresh growing in our window, but it's way better if we do!
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Last, but not least: This Mexican Street Corn from Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice.  This stuff is so good, I can't even handle it.  It sounds a little weird at first, putting mayo on corn, but oh. my. gosh.  Words don't even do it justice, you just have to try it.  It will change your life.

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