We think summery side dishes make outdoor eating extravaganzas part of the magic of summer. We are always on the lookout for some new ideas for side dishes to make the guests at your next get together sing with wild praise. These new recipes below just might do that.
Iceberg Wedges with Blue Cheese Buttermilk Dressing
From Fine Cooking Magazine
The key to this recipe is to find the best blue cheese possible. Cashel Blue or Rogue Creamery’s Oregon Blue are both great options.
3/4 lb blue cheese, coarsely chopped
2 scallions, white and light-green parts only, coarsely chopped
1/2 C mayonnaise
1 T red wine vinegar
Freshly ground pepper
2/3 C buttermilk; more as needed
2 small heads iceberg lettuce, quartered and cored
1) Crumble 1 C of the blue cheese and set it aside as a garnish.
2) Set up a food processor and, with the motor running, drop the scallions through the feed tube. After 10 seconds, shut off the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Add the remaining chopped blue cheese and pulse a few times to chop it further. Stop the motor and add the mayonnaise, vinegar, and 2 t. black pepper. With the motor running, add the buttermilk. Check the texture; if it’s too thick, add more buttermilk to produce a thick and creamy, but pourable dressing.
3) To assemble the salad, lay the iceberg wedges cut side up on 8 salad plates. Spoon about 1/4 C of the dressing over each, then sprinkle each with some of the reserved blue cheese and a few grinds of black pepper. Left-over dressing will keep for 1 week in an airtight container in the fridge.
Canola oil for frying
1/4 C flour
1 t kosher salt
2 large eggs, beaten to blend
1 1/4 C panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
2 firm-ripe medium avocados, pitted, peeled, and sliced into 1/2-in. wedges
Grated parmesan for serving (optional)
1) Preheat oven to 200°. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 1/2 in. oil until it registers 375° on a deep-fry thermometer.
2) Meanwhile, mix flour with 1/2 t salt in a shallow plate. Put eggs and panko in separate shallow plates.
3) Sprinkle the avocado slices with the remaining ½ t salt. Dip each slice in flour, shaking off excess. Dip in egg, then panko to coat. Set on 2 plates in a single layer.
4) Fry a quarter of avocado slices at a time until deep golden, 30-60 seconds. Transfer slices to a plate lined with paper towels. Keep warm in oven while cooking remaining avocados. Sprinkle with salt and a little grated parmesan.