Kale Cobb Salad (or How to Turn Easter Eggs into Dinner)

April 12th, 2012 · 13 Comments · Deconstructing Dinner, Dinner, Quick

It’s 10:45 on Wednesday night. I’m in bed. The girls are too. If they are not yet asleep, they are puzzling over who will be booted from American Idol tomorrow. My husband is sitting next to me working on something very exciting for DALS that we will tell you all about the week of April 23. (Please make a point to visit that day.) And I’m writing about Cobb Salad. (How exactly did I get here? Please tell me.) I don’t have a whole lot to say about the meal, other than it was assembled between 4:00 and 4:20 (wedged in between a long overdue pediatrician appointment and a soccer practice that was plotting to invade our dinner hour), and that the swap-in of shredded kale for crunchy romaine went largely unnoticed by the girls since it was buried under some favorite flavors (read: bacon), and that it works well for kids because it can be customized like a salad bar, and that it made a dent in our significant stash of hard-boiled Easter eggs, and that I wish my kids would eat eggs as enthusiastically as they decorated them, and that every time I eat it I wonder why I only think to make this the week after Easter.

That’s all.

Kale Cobb Salad

In a bowl, toss together large bunch kale (shredded), 3 pieces bacon (crumbled), 2 tablespoons scallions/red onion/shallots (minced), handful tomatoes (chopped), 2 hard-boiled eggs (chopped), 1/2 cup crumbled blue or feta, 1 avocado (chopped), 1 cup cooked chicken (shredded or chopped) with your favorite dressing or this all-purpose vinaigrette. Set aside any potentially deal-breaking ingredient for the kids — in my house, that would  be the ingredient that inspired the meal to begin with: eggs.

A few other ways to use up hard-boiled eggs! Spring asparagus with chopped egg and onion (serve with crispy chicken or fried fish); sliced hard-boiled eggs on white toast with mayonnaise and chopped chives (Andy’s personal favorite); classic potato salad (if you have an advance copy of my new book, see page 244); Curried Egg Salad SandwichCaesar Salad Deviled EggsSalad Nicoise Sandwich; French meatloaf (page 136 of Time for Dinner)

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Asparagus with Chopped Easter Eggs

April 25th, 2011 · 10 Comments · Birthdays, Holidays, Celebrations, Picky Eating, Quick, Sides, Salads, Soup, Vegetarian

I often look at my daughters and ask myself “Whose children are these? How did they get here?” Sometimes this happens when I’m overwhelmed by the sheer enormity of parenting and the fact that I’ve brought two actual live human beings into this world. But most of the time it happens when I show up at the kitchen table with an egg and they recoil in disgust, as though I’ve just served up the family pet. Who are these children? How can they be mine and not like eggs? (Occasionally they will contest this fact and say they like eggs as long as they are baked in to a cake.) I think I could eat an egg every day for the rest of my life and not get sick of them. The day I first tried an organic one – a real, golden-yolked, eggy tasting egg – would be on the timeline of my life along with the day I got into college, the day I got married, and the day I became a mother.

The kids’ whole Heisman routine gets particularly annoying around this time of year when we have a dozen or so pastel-dyed hard-boiled Easter eggs lying around begging to be repurposed for dinner. But it doesn’t stop me. Last year I introduced you to our post-Easter cobb salad. This year, it’s a killer side — chilled asparagus salad with chopped up eggs and drizzled with mustardy vinaigrette. It’s the kind of side dish that elevates any old boring chicken dish. Remember the Gap Clothes, Prada Accessories Theory? Add this one to the list.

Asparagus with Chopped Egg and Onion

Add 1 bunch asparagus (trimmed) to boiling water and cook three minutes. Drain and immediately plunge spears in ice water to stop cooking and preserve their bright green color. Meanwhile, chop 2 hard-boiled eggs into small pieces as shown and sprinkle over chilled asparagus (or over half the asparagus if you have egg haters in the house) along with 1 tablespoon finely minced red onion (I used scallions in the photo above) and drizzle with a mustardy vinaigrette. Serve with creamy baked chicken or buttermilk oven-fried chicken.

I’m taking my spring break a little late this year, so see you guys in about a week!

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