Thursday, April 28, 2011

Revisiting an old friend

Photo: Leo Michels

As promised yesterday, I'm going to focus on low-fat, low-calorie recipes. Lighten things up a bit. When I think "diet", salad always comes to mind. Salad for dinner. Main dish salad. A famous (and fabulous) main dish salad is the "Cobb Salad" invented in the 1930's at the Hollywood Brown Derby Restaurant. The original consists of chopped greens, tomato, crisp bacon, chicken, hard-boiled egg, avocado, and Roquefort cheese.


I wondered if I could perhaps update and improve the original. I replaced the traditional romaine lettuce with a healthier, more nutrient-rich salad green. I deleted the bacon and chicken, choosing instead shrimp as the protein--the smokey bacon flavor is replaced by the smoked paprika. I deleted the egg and used instead raw mushrooms and blanched green beans (they contain no fat grams and are both very low in calories). And I replaced the fat-laden roquefort with an equally assertive goat milk feta cheese.


Carb Diva Cobb Salad

For the dressing:
2 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard

1 tsp. olive oil
1 lb. large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1/8 tsp. salt
1 10-oz. pkg. arugula or spinach leaves
1 cup haricot verts (thin green beans), blanched
1 cup raw button mushroom slices
2 cups cherry tomatoes
1 ripe avocado, cut into 8 wedges
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese feta


Make the Dressing:
Combine juice, oil, and mustard in large bowl; stir with a whisk until blended. Set aside.


Make the Salad:
Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and swirl to coat. Sprinkle shrimp with smoked paprika and salt. Add to pan and cook 2 minutes on each side or until done. Remove from pan and set aside to cool.

Add arugula or spinach leaves to large bowl containing salad dressing. Toss to coat. Divide mixture among 4 salad plates. Top each serving with shrimp, green beans, mushroom slices, tomatoes, avocado and shredded cheese.

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