Just a little ole working gal, who loves food

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Mexican Bean Salad

This weekend we had a Bring your own Meat (BYOM) BBQ for my husbands birthday. My husband is a HUGE carnivore so this was totally up his alley! I took care of a few side dishes for the party and we really did feast on Ribs, Spatchcock Jerk Chicken, Chicken Thighs in a crazy good marinade, Teriyaki Beef Skewers, Bacon Wrapped Potatoes and Sausages! I made a platter of Bacon wrapped jalapenos and some guacamole to start and a giant tray of Mac 'n cheese and this Mexican Bean salad (I apologize for 2 Bean salad recipe's in the same month...but its been a staple in my house this summer since its so easy to make!!)

But first! A picture of the spread! (This isn't even all of it!!)

and now for the recipe!
1 Can Black Beans
1 Can Red Kidney Beans
1 Can Romano Beans
1 Can Corn
1/2 Chopped Red Onion
1/2 Chopped each Green and Red Peppers
Fresh Cilantro Chopped (1 Tbsp)
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
Juice of 1 Lemon
Juice of 1 Lime
1/4 Tsp Chili Powder
Salt & Pepper to taste

Drain and Rinse all your beans and corn and place in a bowl

Add your chopped Onion and Peppers, Mix to combine.

Whisk together your dressing ingredients and pour over the salad. Place the salad in the fridge for 1 hour before serving to allow the flavours to combine.

And serve with your favourite BBQ items!!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Super Easy Refrigerator Pickles!

Instead of planting cucumbers I planted pickle cucumbers in my garden this year. I have always wanted to make my own pickles and figured this year was the year to experiment! So I planted my garlic, dill and cucumbers and waited. A couple weeks ago I harvested my first pickle. It was perfect!
But it was only 1 Pickle...and the rest were all teeny tiny...so I waited about 3 more days and voila...at least a dozen of these suckers!!! I picked them all and got ready to make my first batch!

In a small pot I added 1 1/2 Cups of Pickling Vinegar, 1 Tbsp of Kosher Salt, 1 Tbsp White Sugar, 1 Tsp Coriander Seeds, 1 Tsp Fennel Seeds. I turned the heat on low and allowed the salt and sugar to dissolve slowly. Once all dissolved I removed this from the heat and set aside to cool.

Meanwhile wash your fresh picked cucumbers. Do NOT use regular cucumbers...they will just turn to mush. This time of year is perfect for purchasing bushels of pickle cucumbers from your local farmers market!

Slice the tops and bottoms off the cucumbers and slice into spears. Trying to keep the spears similar in size. Submerge these in ice water until ready to use.

Wash and sanitize your mason jars the night before (I just used the sterilize function on my dishwasher). Fill the bottom of your jars with fresh dill flowers, sliced garlic and a pinch of Red pepper flakes.

Now pack in the cucumbers!

All Ready!!

Now back to the prepared Vinegar solution. Add 1 1/2 cups of cold filtered water to the vinegar and stir. Basically you are adding the same amount of water as vinegar. Pour the Watered down Vinegar solution into the prepared mason jars making sure to fully cover the cucumbers.

Now seal the jars and place in the fridge. The most crispy, crunchy cucumbers will be ready to eat in about 24 hours. 48 hours are best!! They last about 3 weeks in the fridge...but mine lasted about 3 days!!! Next year I might be brave enough to try canning these babies!! But in the mean time...every week i have enough ripe cucumbers to make about 3 more jars!

Monday, August 5, 2013

Fire roasted corn, pepper and black bean salad

One of my favourite summer things to do is to visit a local farmers market around the corner from our place. They always have wonderful fresh local fruit and veggies and really do inspire me to cook more on the grill and eat all my veggies! This side salad will now be a staple in our house this summer!! Especially when my own peppers in the garden ripen!!
5 Cobs of Corn, husked
1 Green Pepper, seeded and cut in half
1 Red Pepper, seeded and cut in half
1 Whole Jalapeno
1 Can Black Beans Rinsed
1/2 Red Onion, finely chopped
Bacon Fat (Optional)
Salt & Pepper
Juice of 1 Lemon
1 Garlic Clove, Minced
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tsp Honey Dijon Mustard
1 Tsp White Balsamic Vinegar
Salt & Pepper to taste

Brush the corn with either rendered bacon fat or olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.

Roast the Corn, Peppers and Jalapeno Pepper on a medium heat grill until cooked through and some char marks appear.

In the meantime prepare your dressing and add your beans and onion to a large bowl.

All charred and ready to chop!

Using a sharp knife cut the kernels off the cobs and chop up your peppers. Add to the beans, onion and dressing

Toss to combine and enjoy!!! Add more dressing and seasoning as you feel fits! Serve alongside your favourite summer BBQ items!