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March 2005 Issue
Easing into Spring
by Ronda L. Halpin
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When March rolls around, it's not unusual for people to think about all the fresh produce that is on its way to the market. That, however, isn't very fair to winter ... which has its own way of handling salads. Chock full of great ingredients that give nods to both comfort foods and spicy ingredients, there's a lot to be said for the salads of winter.

Everything from a warm potato salad that's brimming with a creamy goat cheese dressing and peas to a chopped salad that features spicy shrimp can take advantage of ingredients available throughout the year or, in the case of citrus, is at its best during the winter months. Whether you choose to have your winter salads alongside your hearty stews or make them a meal on their own, please consider including salads on your winter menus. After all, it doesn't need to be July in order for there to be salad days!


Warm Potato Salad with Goat Cheese

Potatoes absorb flavors better while they are warm, so expect an extra tang from a warm salad like this. Creamy goat cheese adds an extra special touch. For extra flair, make this salad with four potatoes that have been roasted!
  • 4 large baking potatoes -- cleaned and cut into 1/2" cubes
  • 2 T. water
  • 1/4 c. crumbled goat cheese
  • 1/4 c. plain yogurt
  • 2 green onions -- bias-sliced
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 2/3 c. frozen peas -- thawed
  • 2 T. finely diced roasted red pepper
Place the potatoes and water in a large glass dish and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Microwave the container and its contents for 10 minutes and allow the potatoes to rest, covered, for an additional 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine the goat cheese, yogurt, onions and seasonings to create a dressing.

Remove the plastic wrap from the bowl and drain away any excess water. Toss the peas and red pepper with the potatoes and mix in the dressing until everything is well-coated. Serve warm.

  • Yields: 4-6 servings
  • Preparation Time: 20 minutes

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