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Two summer salads

Baby Swiss Chard & Farro Salad

for the salad
big, double-handful of baby Swiss chard or baby spinach
2 cups cooked farro
1 small cucumber, seeded and sliced
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1/2 avocado, peeled and diced
1 small fennel bulb, very thinly sliced
1-2 baby carrots, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon chia and/or hemp seeds (optional)
1 palmful pepitas or sunflower seeds (raw or roasted – your choice)
1 recipe herbed avocado dressing, below

for the dressing
1/2 avocado, peeled and cut into large chunks
1 scallion, chopped
1 tablespoon roughly chopped basil leaves
1 tablespoon roughly chopped flat leaf parsely
1 tablespoon roughly chopped dill weed (leaves)
1/4 teaspoon salt (plus more as needed)
1 tablespoon white wine or champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil (plus more as needed)

for the salad
Combine all of the ingredients except the dressing in a large bowl, tossing lightly to mix.

Add 2 tablespoons of dressing and incorporate into the salad. Taste, and add dressing, one tablespoon at a time, until the flavor of the dressing is noticeable.

Serve at room temperature or slightly chilled.

For the dressing
Add all of the ingredients except the water to a tall container (such as a large glass or storage container.

Use an immersion blender to thoroughly mix the dressing. Continue blending until the dressing is fully emulsified and the herbs chopped.

If the dressing is thick, begin adding water 1 tablespoon at a time until the dressing reaches a pourable consistency.

Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Prep Time:20 minutes       Yield: 6 servings

Crunchy Mediterranean Pickle Salad

for the pickle salad
2 pickling-sized cucumbers, sliced in half lengthwise, seeds removed, sliced
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1/2 small red onion, diced
8 to 10 Kalmata or green olives, sliced
2 to 3 ounces feta cheese
salt and pepper

for the vinaigrette
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon salt

Toss the vegetables and the olives in a medium bowl. Sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Set aside.

Whisk together the vinaigrette ingredients in a small bowl. Pour over the vegetable mix and stir to coat.

Refrigerate for at least an hour, preferably several. Sprinkle with feta just before serving. Store leftovers in the fridge. Vegetables will stay crunchy for about 24 hours.

Prep Time:15 minutes       Yield: 4 servings