May 17, 2016

Mortadella-Wrapped Asparagus Dandelion Greens Salad


for the salad:

1/4 lb thinly sliced mortadella
1 lb asparagus
4 hard-boiled eggs, sliced
1 bunch red radishes, sliced
1 cucumber, sliced
1 large bunch dandelion greens, chopped
1/4-1/3 cup shaved parmesan or asiago (or a mix)

for the dressing:

1/4 cup white wine or cognac vinegar
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 350. Line a baking sheet with foil.

Tightly wrap two asparagus spears in one slice of mortadella. Repeat for remaining asparagus. Arrange in a single layer on the lined baking sheet. Bake 5-10 minutes or until the asparagus is warmed through and the mortadella is crisping around the edges. Set aside.

In a large bowl, toss together the remaining salad ingredients. Whisk together the dressing ingredients until well-combined.

Divide the salad among 4 plates. Drizzle with dressing. Top with wrapped asparagus.

My thoughts:
I saw a picture of a salad on Instagram that had a salad topped with asparagus wrapped in some sort of meat and thought it would be fun to make at home. It really took the salad from bland to much more exciting and meal-worthy. I love the imported mortadella I get from my local Italian store so I thought it would be the perfect meat to use around the asparagus. It added the same sort of meaty, salty flavor as the more common prosciutto but the garlic and pistachio added to the flavor as well. Plus it was easier to eat; the texture is much softer than the oft chewy prosciutto. Try, it might become you new favorite spring salad.

Apologies for the lack of posting this month! I had high hopes (May marks the 12th year I've been posting recipes here at Coconut & Lime) but life got in the way. Weekends have been busy and we have been planning the most important part of our upcoming European adventure: where to eat. I've been relying on old favorites and easy dishes too much this month! Look for more recipes in June (if not before) and keep up with me on Instagram and Twitter.

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May 02, 2016

Elotes-style Cauliflower

1 medium-large head cauliflower, broken into florets
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons Mexican crema or sour cream
1 tablespoon TAJÍN seasoning
1/3 cup finely crumbled Cotija cheese
1/4 cup chopped green onion (green parts only)
lime wedges

Preheat oven to 375. Line a baking sheet with foil. Lightly coat the cauliflower in olive oil and arrange in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast 30 minutes or until lightly browned and fork-tender. Allow to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, stir together mayonnaise, sour cream, cheese, TAJÍN seasoning, and green onion in a large bowl until well combined. Pour over the cauliflower and stir to evenly distribute. Divide into bowls. Sprinkle more TAJÍN seasoning and Cotija on top as desired. Serve with lime wedges.

My thoughts:
Mexican street corn aka elotes, and its salad cousin, esquites, is corn-on-the-cob (or off the cob for esquites) spread with mayo, Cotija cheese, lime and chile powder. I love it but corn isn't in season now. I had cauliflower in my cart when I came across a huge bag of crumbled Cotija (at Aldi of all places) and we thought it would be fun to dress up roasted cauliflower elotes style.

When I've made it in the past, I've used ancho, chipotle or even just chili powder but I had some
TAJÍN seasoning leftover from another recipe and used that instead. Traditionally used on fruit, TAJÍN seasoning is a mix of chile peppers, lime, and salt, exactly the same ingredients you need to make elotes so it seemed like a no-brainer to use that on my elotes inspired cauliflower. If you don't have it, up the lime juice, add a sprinkle of salt and sub in your favorite chile powder.

I love how it came out, cauliflower can be a bit of a blank canvas so the flavors really stood out and I love the squirt of fresh lime. It was spicy, creamy and tart all at once. An inspired side dish as we move towards warmer weather.
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