Spinach Arugula Salad with Strawberries

spinach arugula salad with strawberries-2


This is a nutritious and vibrant spring salad with spinach, arugula, asparagus, and strawberries. Crisp green leaves and bright sweet strawberries are tossed in a light balsamic vinaigrette, then topped of with turkey bacon and feta cheese. It’s so delicious  and healthy.




3 tablespoon balsamic vinegar*

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil*

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon squezed lime juice

fresh ground black pepper

* Good quality balsamic vinegar and olive oil is a must for perfect results of this dressing.

I used balsamic vinegar from Trader Joes and Organic California Olive Ranch Olive oil.


Baby Arugula

spinach (baby spinach)

Asparagus sliced 

fresh strawberries quartered 

Cooked turkey bacon (fried/baked)

Feta,blue,or gorgonzola cheese

optional ingredients:

candied walnuts or pecans

sliced red onion



Using a hand blender or blender mix balsamic vinegar,sugar,salt,black pepper, and oil. Then add lime juice and pulse couple times.

( You can adjust salt or sugar to your liking). If the dressing to thick,you can liquify by adding a little bit of water.

Toss spinach, asparagus, arugula ,strawberries, bacon, and candied nuts with some dressing.

Top with cheese and serve.




Spinach Salad

spinach salad


This Spinach salad is delicious, healthy, and vibrant. It’s one of the most requested salads that I bring to potlucks. So I make this salad often. This beautiful salad will look great on your holiday dinner table.

For a great tasting vinaigrette try using  good quality balsamic vinegar, olive oil , and mustard. If you want to add a unique flavor to your vinaigrette, then you may buy truffle balsamic vinegar.



Baby spinach

1 red,yellow or orange bell pepper sliced lengthwise

1/2 red onion sliced (not too thin)

Glazed/candied pecans or walnuts.

Choice of Feta,blue cheese, or Gorgonzola (crumbled)

Bacon (baked/fried and crumbled)

4 tablespoons oil


Honey Dijon balsamic vinaigrette:

3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

1/4  shallot chopped (optional)

1-2 garlic cloves

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon honey

Salt and fresh ground black pepper




Using a hand blender, Combine balsamic vinegar,shallot,garlic,mustard,salt,and pepper.

With blender running,slowly pour in oil. Continue to blend until vinaigrette thickens.

If too thick, you can add a little water to adjust thickness to your liking.

Adjust seasoning and sweetness if needed.

Let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes.


Heat 2 tbsp.oil in a skillet on med-high heat.

Add bell pepper and saute.

Remove a peppers from skillet.

Add 2 tbsp. oil. to the same skillet.

Add onions and saute.

Arrange spinach leaves on a salad plate or salad bowl then following this order:

Dressing (drizzled)

bell peppers





If serving in a large salad bowl, Arrange in layers by repeating the order.




Cabbage Carrot Salad

cabbage carrot salad


This is a quick,easy, and fresh cabbage carrot salad. It’s a nutritious and delicious salad that goes wonderful with almost everything.


Serving size: 4-6 people

1/2  cabbage head shredded

1 large carrot shredded

1/2 sweet onion thinly sliced*


2-3 tablespoons mayonnaise

* You can use regular white onion,just soak or wash in water.


Start by massaging cabbage with a little salt in a bowl.

Add shredded carrots,onions, and mayo.Mix everything until all ingredients combined.


Funchoza Salad with Beef



Funchoza with meat-3


Funchoza salad with beef is very well known Korean noodle salad dish. Flavorful combination of  sautéed veggies, browned meat, and glass noodles (bean thread noodles) dressed with sweet chili and soy sauce. It’s so delicious and can be made few days ahead. You can omit meat for vegetarian salad or sub in chicken.If you don’t like sweet type salads,you can omit sweet chili sauce.


5-6 ozs, bean thread noodles

1 lb. beef cut in to thin 2 inch slices (chuck or tri-tip roast preferred )

1 large or 2 small onions quartered then thinly sliced

2 carrots thinly julienned

1 1/2 cup daikon thinly julienned

1 1/2  red bell peppers thinly sliced

5-6 garlic cloves

4 green onions cut into 2 inch strips

2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

1 cup sweet chili sauce (optional,but good.I buy it from Trader Joes)

1/2 cup soy sauce (you can add more to taste)

1 tablespoon rice vinegar (white vinegar ok too)





On medium high heat,In a frying pan or dutch oven heat about 4 tablespoons oil.

Throw in strips of beef and season with salt. Cook with lid closed stirring occasionally until meat is slightly browned and soft.

Remove meat to a large colander with a bowl or plate underneath.

Throw in onions and sauté until softened.Transfer to the colander with meat.

Repeat the procedure with carrots,bell peppers, and daikon with green onions.Adding more oil as needed.


Cook bean thread Following instruction on the package(don’t overcook). Cut noodles if desired with knife or kitchen shears.

Transfer all cooked ingredients to a bowl, then add garlic, cilantro, soy sauce, vinegar , and sweet chili sauce. Mix it well and refrigerate for at least 2 -3 hours.


Funchoza with meat







Greek Salad

greek salad

This is light and healthy Greek salad recipe.Greek Salad is a crisp, light, healthy  summer salad. Torn Romaine lettuce is topped with juicy tomatoes, crisp cucumbers, kalamata olives, red onion, peppers and crumbled or diced feta cheese then tossed with light and tangy lemon olive dressing.This Greek salad is refreshing and perfect for summer.


1-2 romaine hearts sliced or torn

1-2 tomatoes sliced into thin wedges

1/2  english cucumber sliced in semicircles

1/2 red onion thinly sliced

kalamata/black olives

pepperoncini  and/or green bell pepper sliced

Crumbled or diced feta cheese

Fresh parsley minced (optional)



2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar*

1 teaspoon salt or to taste (I used pink himalayan)

1 teaspoon sugar

fresh ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon dry parsley

1 large clove garlic or 2 small

1/3 cup olive oil (high quality recommended)

*You can sub in white or red wine vinegar


Directions for dressing:

In a bowl whisk lemon juice,balsamic vinegar,salt,sugar,parsley,black pepper,and garlic.Gradually whisk in olive oil.Continue to whisk until the dressing is well combined and thickened a little.Set a side for at least 15 minutes-30 minutes.Or refrigerate for later use.

Place all salad ingredients in a salad bowl or a plate.Toss with prepared dressing.

Greek salad-2




Tomato Salad

tomato salad


A stunning tomato salad that is easy-to follow,healthy,and flavorful.This tomato salad tastes incredible with homegrown tomatoes and goes perfectly with plov(rice pilaf),grilled kabobs,and potatoes. Thanks to my moms kindness to share her garden tomatoes and sweet yellow peppers with me.



3-4 tomatoes cut in half then thinly sliced

2 pickling cucumbers or 1/3 of english cucumber  thinly sliced (optional)

1-2 sweet peppers thinly sliced (optional)

1/2 red onion thinly sliced

2 garlic cloves (optional)

Desired  one or all optional herbs:





salt and pepper

1/4 cup unrefined sunflower oil*(my fav) or any other of your choice

*easily can be found at European (Russian)stores.


Mix all ingredients in a bowl and serve immediately.


Shrimp Spring Salad


shrimp spring salad

 Spring and summer are my favorite seasons.Everything around you looks amazingly beautiful, fresh and full of life.This shrimp spring salad consists of leafy romaine lettuce, radish, sweet peas and shrimp.All the ingredients are tossed with creamy garlicky dill dressing.It’s very tasty and easy to make for any occasion.Even though the dressing is creamy, salad feels very light but filling.

Serves 2-4


1 bunch romaine lettuce torn or chopped

3-4 radishes sliced

2/3 cup  frozen peas (thawed)

1 lb cooked shrimp

Other optional ingredients:

avocado,chives,cherry tomatoes


2 heaping tablespoons mayonnaise

2 heaping spoons plain greek yoghurt or sour cream

2 tablespoons fresh finely chopped dill

2-3 crushed garlic cloves

Salt and fresh ground black pepper



In a small bowl,whisk all dressing ingredients and set aside.

Place romaine lettuce,radis,pesa,and shrimp in mixing bowl.

Toss salad with garlic dill dressing.

[amazon template=banner easy&asin=deliofculi-20]



BBQ Ranch Chicken Salad

BBQ ranch chicken salad

Absolutely amazing,delicious  and filling BBQ ranch chicken salad. This salad got so many of my of favorite ingredients especially fresh crispy onion strings. You can refer this salad as a copycat recipe from Cheesecake Factory. I love to order this salad whenever we go there or Thai lettuce wraps substituted with grilled portable mushrooms for chicken.It’s the best! so fresh,crunchy,and healthy.

BBQ ranch dressing:

1 clove garlic crushed

3 tablespoons sour cream

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

1/2 cup buttermilk

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1/2 teaspoon dried and/or  fresh parsley

1 tablespoon grated parmesan cheese

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2-3  tablespoons bbq sauce

salt and fresh ground pepper



1-2 chicken breast



1/4 cup lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon  worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons bbq sauce


Onions strings:

1 sweet onion peeled and sliced thin rounds

3/4 cup corn starch

salt and pepper

oil for frying


2 heads romaine lettuce chopped

1/4 head purple cabbage thinly sliced (optional)

1 large tomato diced

1 avocado diced

1/2 can black beans, drained

1/2 cup fresh,canned or frozen(thawed) corn

fresh cilantro chopped



BBQ ranch: Whisk all ingredients set a side or refrigerate.

Chicken: Mix seasoning/marinade ingredients. Add it to chicken. Bake,grill or use electric grill (such as George Foreman) to cook chicken.When chicken is done let it rest for 3-5 minutes.Cut into bite size cubes.

Onions: Cover sliced onions with water and set a side for 10 minutes.Fill heavy pot or deep skillet with oil about 3/4 – 1 inch from the bottom and heat it on high heat.

Combine corn starch with salt and pepper.Drain the water from onions and separate into single rounds .Add corn starch mix to the onions and mix.

When oil is really hot,using tongs fry onions in small batches until lightly golden brown.


Arrange salad ingredients on a salad plate or bowl.Add diced chicken.Top with onion strings and drizzle with BBQ ranch dressing.


Korean Carrot Salad


korean carrot salad

Well flavored,slightly spicy, and vibrant Korean carrot salad.This salad was popularized  by ethnic Koreans all over Russia,Ukraine,and Central Asia.It always been a staple salad at all Slavic weddings,parties,and holidays.

This recipe came from my mother who was selling this salad along with Kim Chi salad at a local farmers market back in Tajikistan.Korean ladies tought her how to make it the authentic way. Adding sugar is optional. My mom doesn’t add sugar.


8 carrots peeled

1/2 onion

1/2 carrot sliced in half

1 cup oil *

2 tbs white sugar (optional)

1 tbs salt or +/- to taste

6-8  cloves garlic crushed

1 teaspoon ground or coarsly ground coriander seeds.

1/4 cup white vinegar

1 dry red chili pepper

1 teaspoon black pepper

red chili pepper flakes or cayenne pepper (optional)

Chopped fresh cilantro (optional)


* Use non flavored oil such as canola,vegetable,corn,grape seed or light olive oil.


Shred carrots using a thin julienne slicer.

Add salt and sugar. Mix well using your hands .

Pour oil in to a small pan (preferably deep one).

Place chili pepper,sliced carrot and onion in the oil ( sliced side down).

Heat it well on medium-high heat until 1/4 of  onion is black and the oil is boiling *

Meanwhile,add garlic,vinegar,black pepper,coriander,and hot peppers (if you prefer your salad to be spicy) to carrots.

Carefully Pour hot oil allover carrots making sure to pour some over garlic.

Quickly and carefully remove and discard onion and chili pepper.

Mix with your hands.

Adjust seasonings if needed.

This salad has to be refrigerated at least 12 hours before serving.

Add fresh cilantro to the salad if desired.

Can be stored in a well covered container up to 10 days.


Eggplant Salad

Eggplant salad

Salads play major role in Russian and Ukrainian cuisine especially at holidays or any kind of celebration.At weddings tables are filled with delicious food and big variety of salads;Eggplant salad would be one of them.I love and adore Eggplant salads!

My mother in law is a wonderful cook with a heart full of love and care.She is also known as a praying woman. She always likes to surprise her grandchildren with goodies and tries to make something  special for her adult children. She shared this recipe with me and I would say that it’s my favorite eggplant salad so far.It’s healthy and surprisingly filling.This salad stores well for weeks in a jar or airtight container.


3 quarts tomato juice

2 cups oil

1 1/4 cup sugar

3-3 1/2 tablespoons salt

1/3 cup vinegar


4-5 eggplants cut into short thick strip

3 red bell peppers

4 carrots peeled and thinly julienned

1 garlic head peeled and crushed

3/4 cup chopped parsley

1/2 cup chopped cilantro (optional)



Combine marinade ingredients in a pot.Bring to boil.

In batches,add eggplant to marinade and cook for 12-14 minutes.

Place colander on top of a bowl and transfer cooked eggplants to colander .

Cook bell peppers for about 7-8 minutes.Transfer to colander.

Cook carrots 5-7 minutes and transfer to colander with the rest of the vegetables.

Transfer vegetables from colander to a another bowl.Add herbs,garlic,and 1 cup of the marinade.Mix well to combine all the ingredients.




Cabbage Salad with Pepper and Carrots

cabbage salad

Cabbage is very popular vegetable in Russian cuisine.We make salads,we make soups,we make golupsi,piroshki,and braised cabbage.Cabbage is very nutritious and delicious! I prepare variety of cabbage salads often,because my whole family loves this vegetable.This salad crunchy,a little tangy with little sweetness from carrots and bell peppers.

1 cabbage

2-3 carrots

1 -1 1/2 red,yellow,or orange bell pepper

1 onion

1/4 cup vinegar

1 tablespoon salt

1 tablespoon sugar

1 cup oil + 1/2 onion round with tail or 1 small onion peeled

1 whole dry red chili pepper  or pepper flakes


In a large mixing bowl,shred cabbage using a mandolin slicer.

Add sugar and salt to cabbage.Massage cabbage for a little.

Peel carrots and julienne thinly or grate them on top of cabbage.

Cut bell pepper in four equal parts.Slice bell pepper over carrots using a mandolin.

Peel onion.Cut onion in four equal quarters and slice thinly over bell peppers using mandolin slicer.

In a skillet or frying pan,heat oil with 1 small onion or 1/2 onion cut vertically(whole tail on) and chili pepper.Oil needs to get really hot (bottom of an onion should be really dark(black).

Meanwhile,pour vinegar over cabbage ,carrots,bell pepper ,and onion.

When the oil is ready and really hot,Pour it over the salad on the onions.

Mix until all the ingredients well combined.

This salad can be served right away or for best results next day.Can be stored in a glass jar for a week or so.



Croissant Chicken Salad Sandwich

Croissant chicken salad sandwich

Buttery,flaky croissant with creamy chicken salad is a satisfying and elegant chicken sandwich.By dividing the sandwich in half  or using a petite croissant ;these sandwiches will look impressive at  baby showers,bridal showers,brunch or any get togethers.Both of the recipes are delicious and can be made with other type of breads as well.

6-8 croissants

I  cooked/roasted chicken breast sliced or cubed ( or 2 cans of canned)

1/4 of apple cored and chopped

3/4 cup grapes halved (green or purple)

1 tablespoon fresh dill finely chopped

1/2 cup sliced almonds toasted

1/3 cup fried bacon pieces(optional)

fresh black ground pepper

1 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup heavy whipping cream




Other option-

I cooked/roasted chicken breast  sliced or cubed ( or 2 cans of canned)

1/2 cup peeled and cubed cucumber

3 green onion finely chopped

1/2 cup mayonnaise


croissant chicken salad sandwich



Tomato and Eggplant salad

DSC_3163Combination of tomatoes and eggplants is very popular in russian and Italian cuisine.They go perfectly together.This salad is delicious and simple to make consisting of  few ingredients.


Spinach Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing


A Delightful,beautiful,healthy and refreshing salad especially when strawberries are in season.This salad can versatile by adding different variety of ingredients of your choice.Poppy seed dressing is so delicious that you can eat it with a spoon.You can also add this dressing to your fruit salad.[amd-zlrecipe-recipe:5]