02 April 2010


This week I have been changing gears and getting Spring projects done. Closet cleaning, touching up paint (sort of- I bought the paint and brush!) putting out the patio furniture, washing curtains, etc. (We won't discuss that the cats are furious or my Lysol induced migraine!) We leave for Paris next week and I thought it would be nice to come home to a clean (er) place!

I love the what the whole putzing around the house does for my soul. I feel such a sense of accomplishment when I open up tidy linen closets or see the sun shining through clean windows! I am trying to eliminate some STUFF in my house, so this feeling happens more frequently. I'm not on "hoarder" status, but that show scares the heck out of me and I've started making regular trips to Goodwill!

I got the most pleasure out of 2 projects, planting purple pansies in my window boxes and making a potato green bean salad. I guess it's always the little things!

This salad combines my most favorite foods and I ate the first batch standing up at the counter! I shared the 2nd batch with the family and the 3rd with my spring cooking class. All in the same week! (We are having it on Easter Sunday too!) Soft creamy potatoes, just crisp, bright green beans and a hint of licorice in the tangy vinaigrette! The salad would pair up great with any grilled meats or ham, some fresh bread and cheese! I drank it with Santa Guistina's Malvasia, a lovely white wine from Italy that has a bit of floral essesence and the perfectly balanced acidity you need for a salad course!


2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
1 Tablespoon Sambuca
¼ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
½ cup Extra virgin Olive Oil (best quality)

1 ½ lbs. red potatoes cut into 1 inch chunks
¾ pound Haricot Verts (tiny, skinny green beans) blanched (3-4 minutes in boiling water)
½ Red Onion, minced
1 Tablespoon fresh thyme
½ cup Parsley, finely chopped
½ cup tiny black olives
Combine the first 7 ingredients in a glass jar, or shaker and shake vigorously to combine. This can be made several days in advance.
Boil potatoes until tender about 20 minutes and blanch green beans. You want the beans to be bright green and retain a bit of snap. Drain.

Combine potatoes, onion, green beans and herbs, coat with vinaigrette and toss to coat. Do about an hour in advance for the best flavor! This salad is best served slightly warm or at room temperature.

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