Tag Archives: watercress

Cobb Style Steak Salad

<img alt="salad ingredients"/>

I was hoping Mother Nature might take pity on us by wielding her mighty weather wand because October has arrived and with it, the promise of Fall.  All things apples and pumpkins, steaming bowls of comforting soup to stave off a late afternoon chill in the air.  New wooly socks and freshly knitted scarves in blended hues of purple and rust.  Leaves that change color seemingly overnight, then fall to the ground before one realizes it.  Standing on the porch in the evening to inhale the fresh air and scent of burning wood from a fireplace nearby.  Cuddling and snuggling…

Wait.  Not necessarily.

It’s a sweltering 94 degrees today, and for those who live inland in San Diego county, the temperatures are well past 100 degrees.  There’s a breeze wafting through our house, but it’s a warm one and so the fan cycling the air beneath my desk sends welcome relief.  As much as it is not all that unusual for our weather to be warm well into Fall, this is a bit much, and it’s had me thinking about the idea of looking forward to something often elusive — for me, at least — instead of embracing that which is today, and now.

The hubster and I often chide ourselves for being the weather nerds we are, but so be it.  And just to confirm it, I have a weather widget on all my devices tagged with my favorite cities — or cities where my favorite people live — and I frequently check to see how their weather differs from ours. Yes, really.

Guess what?  It seems to be pretty warm most everywhere today.  Allow me to illustrate:

Virginia (my sister lives there) is not quite as warm as it is here, but 75 degrees today is quite nice for October 2nd even if there are thunder storms.

Toronto (where I had the great pleasure of visiting recently) enjoyed a balmy 68 degrees today.

Western New York state (my childhood BFF lives there) had rain, but it was 66 degrees.  That’s warm by my standards and rain would be most welcomed.

San Francisco (teh ManBoy goes to school there) was most likely baking in the high 80s temps today and I heard from his roomie, so check.

Rota, Spain (my favorite childhood home) enjoyed 80 degree temps. Beach, anyone?

Even London, England (favorite vacation destination) managed 61 degrees today. Not enough for more than two light layers.  Maybe.

Fall?  What Fall?  Seriously?

I’ll blatantly ignore the calendar (and far more delicately with apologies, of course, the lovely New England folks nudging the rest of us along their pipe dream), to wallow instead in the moment of nowTodayLife where I live.   Life where fresh produce grows all year long and Farmers’ Markets don’t close for the season.  Really!  Life where the sun shines and shines.  I need to embrace the warm days and nights craved in June when the calendar said I should, instead of knowing they’d show up as they always do in September and October.  Brace myself for the piercing sunlight so normal here for this time of year. Welcome the nights of cool relief from the day’s heat. People who deal with excessive humidity just don’t understand the wonder of it.  It’s not the same as their summer.  Their heavy heat and humidity.  Not even close.

Relax and enjoy that life is good, I say. Regardless.

Perhaps we’ll have a salad for dinner since I can’t bear to think of turning on the oven for the Macaroni & Cheese I promised the hubster.    No, this recipe for Cobb Style Steak Salad will be something  that  the barbie can be fired up for if you’d like, or more easily, a panini pan used if one is handy. Either way, it’s all about enjoying the fresh flavors of a great dinner salad — warm weather or not.

Nice.

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Bittman Salad 29: Balsamic Cherries & Bitter Greens

Rainier Cherries

There are any number of reasons I’ve decided to chop and chew my way through the 101 “Simple Salads” Mark Bittman conjured up for the summer season. Julie & Julia has been simmering in my mind since I finished reading the book a month or two ago, and as the movie opening date approaches and the resulting hubbub ensues, I guess I’ve spent quite a bit of time thinking about not only cooking my way through something to ground myself, but cooking period.  Sadly, my kitchen hasn’t been getting the workout it’s used to.  Does making salad count as cooking? Will Mr. Bittman deem it a stunt and suggest I’m a less than serious salad maker?  Is it possible that food snobs everywhere will comment on my efforts and suggest I’m not worthy of sampling this treasure trove of healthy minimalist fare?

Or, perhaps, there is the real reason I’ve decided to embark on this quest:   I will benefit from all the lovely green things I’m ingesting and could lose weight in the process.  Think about it:  101 salads in 101 days.  That’s a bit of roughage.  It’s healthy, easy and because I’ve scanned all the combinations Bittman suggests, I know I’ll find something new to add to my old standards.

I have some planning to do with organizing the salads into groups with common ingredients to make shopping more manageable, but in the meantime, I’ve begun with #29.  Why?  Because I had  Rainier Cherries in the fridge that were in desperate need of use.  I’m thinking that’s as good a reason as any.

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