23 July 2022

Abrams Cookbooks & a Winning Salad Recipe (Weekend Cooking)

Book cover of What's Gaby Cooking: Eat What You Want by Gaby DalkinBefore I get to the cookbook and recipe, I just want to let you know that my Facebook messenger was hacked and someone sent out bogus messages from me yesterday. If you got one, just ignore it. I still haven't figured out how to report the incident, but for now, I'm hoping this is a one-time event.

As you know I've been a member of the Abrams Dinner Party cookbook review group for a number of years now. You may wonder if I continue to use any of the Abrams cookbooks after I've reviewed them. I'm here to say yes. I cook from them a lot.

For example, I made the most delicious chocolate cake I've made in years for our July 4 cookout. That red wine chocolate cake recipe came from Gabriel Kreuther: The Spirit of Alsace, a Cookbook (which I reviewed last November). A week or so ago I made the chicken Parmesan from The Dinner Plan, an Abrams cookbook I first wrote about in December 2017. I shared the recipe for that chicken parm in September 2018, and it's still my go-to.

Anyway, my point is that when I rave about a cookbook, it's not just for the moment. I can usually tell if a cookbook will stand the test of time. Abrams cookbooks often do. If you want to be a member of the Abrams Dinner Party, the application for the next publishing season is live now. You have until July 31 to apply. Just click this link.

This past week has been HOT and next week will be even hotter. Turning on the oven is not high on my list of things I want to do. Thank goodness I own an air fryer, because it saved us from a hot kitchen on three nights (see my meal plan below).

For two dinners, I turned to another favorite Abrams cookbook, What's Gaby Cooking: Eat What You Want, which I reviewed in June 2020. First up was the Greek Chicken Trough, which is a salad of tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, chicken and feta cheese. I employed the air fryer here to cook the chopped chicken breasts so I didn't have to heat up my house.The other salad was The LA Chop (see photo from 2020). This one isn't for my vegetarian and vegan friends, but it absolutely satisfies the omnivore BFR household. I've shared the recipe below.

Note that I didn't include the recipe for the lemon vinaigrette needed for the following recipe. Just make a simple olive oil, red wine vinegar, and garlic dressing, substituting the juice of 1 lemon for some of the vinegar.

The LA Chop
Serves 4 as an entree

  • Lemon Vinaigrette
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 head iceberg lettuce [sometimes I use romaine hearts]
  • 1 head radicchio
  • ½ small red onion thinly sliced
  • 1 pint (300g) heirloom cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters
  • 1 (15-oz, 430 g) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 8 ounces (225 g) fresh pearl mozzarella
  • 4 ounces (115 g) provolone cheese, cut into medium dice
  • 4 ounces (115 g) Genoa salami cut into small cubes
  • 5 pepperoncini (stems discarded), cut into thin slices
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano for garnish
Whisk the dried oregano into the vinaigrette and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cut the lettuce into 1/4-inch strips. Repeat with the radicchio.

In a large, wide bowl, combine the lettuce, and radicchio, tomatoes, chickpeas, mozzarella, provolone, salami, and pepperoncini. Season with salt to taste and toss to thoroughly combine. Drizzle 6 tablespoons (90 ml) of the dressing over the salad and toss gently to coat evenly. Taste and add more dressing as needed. Transfer to a large platter and garnish with the chopped oregano.

Note: The recipe is used with permission; all rights remain with the original copyright holders.

Last Week's Dinners
Saturday: Grilled salmon with roasted yellow wax beans (in the air fryer)
Sunday: Greek Chicken Trough salad (used the air fryer for the chicken)
Monday: Pork tenderloin and broccoli (cooked in the air fryer)
Tuesday: Tofu and vegetable stir-fry and rice
Wednesday & Thursday: Black bean enchiladas
Friday: The LA Chop salad

Shared with Weekend Cooking, hosted by Marg at The Intrepid Reader (and Baker)


Vicki 7/23/22, 8:18 AM  

The Greek Chicken Trough sounds very good!

gluten Free A_Z Blog 7/23/22, 8:24 AM  

I like the name and the ingredients in this salad. I've been using a lot of radicchio in my salads and find it adds a lovely color and flavor. Yes, It's HOT here too and I've been prepping a BIG salad each Saturday, dividing into mason jars, and enjoying the salad for 4 days with no extra effort. In this heat it's perfect. I also find that between my Instant Pot and Air fryer, my stove and oven get very little use.

Jackie McGuinness 7/23/22, 8:49 AM  

Very hot here too. Salad sounds good.

Tina 7/23/22, 9:40 AM  

I'd like to thumb through that book. The salad is operfect for our weather now. I am not on FB so I did not get your bogus message :-)

Mae Travels 7/23/22, 10:09 AM  

Salad is definitely the thing for this hot summer! I’ve noticed that in hot climates (like the south of Spain) the traditional foods are often dishes that can be cooked early in the day before the worst heat. Example: the “tortilla espagnol” egg-potato dish. Your chicken salad, besides sounding delicious, could be another example of this type of planning.

Best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz 7/24/22, 9:41 AM  

I love to return again and again to cookbooks that offer up excellent information as well as great recipes.

Marg 7/26/22, 7:39 AM  

Love it when a cookbook makes it from a oh that's pretty to actually using it!

Marg 7/27/22, 6:15 AM  

I love it when a book changes from a glorified coffee table book to something that you actually use!

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