Sunday Supper...Pizza and Zucchini Ribbon Salad

We've been cleaning out the garage and trying to get organized for Spring  this weekend. The weather has been beautiful...padding around the house in flip flops is a welcome change.

We couldn't live without pizza so I'm throwing together a simple thin crust cheese variety tonight..

and for a salad...

 Zucchini Ribbon salad from The Proud Italian Cook from Chicago is so easy and fabulous...

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Ribbons of zucchini can instantly transform a simple salad into something you might see served at an upscale restaurant, not only does it look pretty, but the added zucchini adds a special element of flavor. This is so easy to make and you don't even need a fancy gadget to do it! A simple vegetable peeler is all you'll need to to cut the thin lengthwise strips of zucchini.

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Start by cutting off the ends of your zucchini then use your peeler to cut the strips, stopping and turning when you see the seeds. The unused portion as seen in the photo above can easily be diced up and used for future use. You'll want to make sure you cook your strips of zucchini either in a stove top grill or saute pan coated with a tiny bit of olive oil, they only take a couple of minutes. Make sure they cool completely before adding them to your salad.

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She suggests using arugula for the salad base and toss it in a vinaigrette of 3 parts olive oil to 1 part red wine vinegar, added a touch of Dijon, a crushed garlic clove, salt, black pepper and oregano, any lemon based dressing would be work as well. Lay your zucchini strips on top, toss in some feta or shaved Parmesan and sprinkle with toasted nuts, Hazelnuts are used here with the feta, but pine nuts or slivered almonds would be just as good.

To finish, drizzle a little more dressing over the top. Just let your creative juices flow and make it your own! 

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Spring has us dreaming...it's project time folks!

We've always loved the idea of a wine dining room combination.  Designer Frank Poretio took this idea to an entirely different level  with his Carriage Renovation in to what he calls a  "pour" Room.

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Image via Chicago Home and Garden

Rather than fitting out a clammy basement to hold his bottles, Ponterio transformed the carriage house, storing his wine in enormous temperature-controlled “caves” hidden behind panels made from simple slat boards that match the look of the old structure. He installed large front doors of naturally aged mahogany, which he and his wife fling open as often as the weather will allow. It’s about the furthest thing from a dank, candlelit wine cellar you could imagine.

“It looks very rustic in there on purpose,” Ponterio says. “We really wanted to keep the mood casual.” Now, as often as twice a month, eight or so fortunate guests enjoy dinner around the rough-hewn French farm table Ponterio found in New Orleans (Excerpt from an interview by Lisa Cregan of

Chicago Home and Garden.

)

I think we'll imagine having our dinner right here tonight...while I try to convince my husband it's time for a few projects of our own...

It's your turn.  Let's Talk!

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Food Images by Proud Italian Cook