Platter Dinners

Posted by on Aug 4, 2016 in Salad | 2 comments

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We dine at home almost exclusively; that means we are certain of what we are eating and that means whole food. For the better part of six years, MP and I have been eating healthy homemade plant-based food, including oodles of the usual fresh veggie fruity suspects—high-quality beans, legumes, grains, nuts, etc.

photo source:PICTIGAR

Never do we stray to chips, green tea ice cream sandwiches, cookies, pie or cake--umm place emoji cheater pie hole face here.

black beans

 

January belongs to the Daniel Fast and as winter turns into spring and summer more poultry, fish, and wild game finds a place at the table.

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Most recently, we struck a deal with Whole30; I boarded that train hesitantly, fearing the big fat fatty dragon.  It nevertheless focusses on whole foods as well, while shunning the aforementioned bean, legume, grain approach.

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Dude's Pizza
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Neither of us can imagine living without homemade pizza, pasta, or whole grain bread stacked with avocado, tomatoes, and pink peppercorns; but I embraced simple menu planning and will continue adopting bits and pieces as we reset the foodstuffs button from time to time. Take o’so delicious eggs; the incredible edible egg.

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Having said all that, quite a few times a week, especially in the summer time, a hefty blossoming platter graces our table accompanied by two plates, napkins, and go-girl green tongs.

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For the reason that no two platters appear ever again, there is no recipe per se; by planning ahead, platter dinners are a great deal like creating a flower bouquet; banquet style.

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Without rules, there are a few; homemade salad dressings, vinaigrettes, condiments, and sauces guild your bounty.  Learn the basics; shaking up a batch becomes second nature without all the pricey funny tasting bottled varieties hogging up your refrigerator shelves.

Always make more than you need.

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Purslane Salad

Secure the freshest and most seasonal salad ingredients, proteins, grains, cheeses, etc. and plan to ‘beef’ it up with delicious items you formerly considered ‘side’ dishes (without the dishes).  Depending on which food plan nourishes your heart and body, use those foods accordingly.

 

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Here is the process as I delve into the crisper drawer—

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  • Choose a white platter; it is your canvas.
  • Pick a leafy green, arugula, spinach, or mixed baby lettuces. I have decided 2-3 ounces per person is ideal.
  • Make a dressing that is compatible with your greens and vegetables. For instance, Balsamic vinaigrette is loved by spinach or arugula especially if you’ve got Italian inspired sides like Caprese happening.  Everyone’s pet Cilantro Lime or Ranch pair well with sturdier greens and Mexican styled platters. Lemon Vinaigrette is always safe.
  • Consider adding roasted tomatillo, Romesco sauces, or chimichurri kinds of condiments to add over meats, fish, or chicken elements.
  • Dress your greens lightly and place them evenly near the center of the platter before you let your freak flag fly.
  • Add clusters of grilled vegetables, fruits, steamed or blanched green beans, pea pods etc. in a decorative and colorful way.
  • Tuck a few olives, fresh berries, marinated peppers or pickled guys, like beets here and there.
  • Open, rinse and drain a can of cannellini beans or garbanzos for a protein bump.
  • Hard cooked eggs, avocado, shredded carrots, cherry tomatoes, artichoke hearts, and deli stuff, etc. are rad.
  • Then carefully consider which clusters need more dressing; raw ones of course. Although, roasted Brussels sprouts, peppers, asparagus, squashes, potatoes, yams or other vegetables may have come dressed from the oven or grill on their own.
  • Lastly, place fish, meats, or poultry in a prominent position.
  • Seasonal grilled jewel-like fruit ties it up in a bow.

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Make it your own, carry it to the table and bring extra dressing.

Picky people get their own set of go-girl tongs...

Photographs and text used on cococooks belong to me, Peggy Lunde unless linked otherwise.

2 Comments

  1. 8-4-2016

    When can the Healeys move in? We’re not picky about the room…just there for the food.

  2. 8-4-2016

    Hi Martha, Do you do windows?
    xx coco

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