Grilled ribeye and leftovers: fennel, bell pepper and orange salad with grilled ribeye and sesame seeds

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I’m so ready for Spring! It was here, all warm and full of sunshine, and then it went away. Luckily for me, I managed to squeeze in the year’s first BBQ sometime in between rays of sunshine and rainclouds. I made something that clearly doesn’t merit a recipe, because it involved only cutting my bell pepper and zucchini in half, drizzling the veggies and my ribeye with olive oil, adding a generous helping of sea salt and a little bit of piment d’Espelette, and throwing it all on the grill. Easy, peasy, delicious. I was mmm-ing all through the meal, honestly one of the best I’ve had in a while. It hit the spot, and made me crave Spring (and even Summer) that much more. And guess what else makes you wish that winter was finally over? A fabulous, light, crunchy, salty-sweet salad made with leftover grilled ribeye steak!

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Hazelnut honey mustard vinaigrette

Oh, vinaigrette! When I moved to France eight years ago, this was one of the first things I learned to “make,” and also one of the most rewarding. I’m not crazy for organic products, but I do take satisfaction in knowing what goes into what I eat. I almost always prefer making things from scratch, even if it means spending a little (or sometimes a lot!) more time in the kitchen. And while I do have a soft spot for creamy ranch dressing, I’ve learned to live without it and to prefer a simple, homemade vinaigrette. My go-to is the very recipe that I first learned here, a classic olive oil, red wine vinegar and mustard sauce. But my new favorite, which is better on so many levels, is this hazelnut honey mustard dressing. Continue reading

Goat cheese salad with honey, raisins, potatoes and grilled bacon bits

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Goat cheese and salad equals a quick and satisfying meal every time. This is one of my current favorites, sweetened slightly with the addition of honey and golden raisins, and earthy with the addition of potatoes and bacon.

Simply whip up a classic mustard vinaigrette with olive oil, mustard and red wine vinegar. Toss your salad with this dressing, cooked bacon or lardon, leftover baked potatoes and golden raisins. Top a piece of bread with a slice of goat cheese and some dried herbs and place under your broiler for about 10 minutes. Remove, drizzle with honey and serve atop your salad!

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Easy vinaigrette

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Nothing beats a good, home-made vinaigrette. I usually keep a small jar in my fridge at all times, making whipping up a pasta or tomato salad just that much easier. Plus, by making your vinaigrette directly in a bottle or jar that has a lid, you can simply shake it to emulsify, saving yourself tedious moments of solitude as you whisk and whisk and realize that your oil is still separate from the rest. Continue reading

Goat cheese salad with bacon-blood orange vinaigrette and blood orange-black pepper marmalade

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My face lit up a few days ago when I was grocery shopping and came upon a marvelously large and cheap bag of blood oranges. My mind started to race, and I hurried home to my empty house to start eating and cooking them right away. I was very tempted to make some sort of dessert, but finally decided on a marmalade that would go fabulously with the Selles-sur-Cher ashy goat cheese that I purchased. And what better way to sublime my goat cheese and marmalade than to put it atop of sourdough bread with sea salt, all of which itself would go atop of a lovely, leafy salad with even more blood orange-y goodness packed inside!

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