Thursday, September 3, 2009

GOTTA EAT THIS!!! Awesome Avocado Salad!!!

I LOVE Ina Garten, otherwise known as the Barefoot Contessa! I love watching her calmly and lovingly prepare meals for friends and loved ones on the Food Network.  I love flipping through her cookbooks which are loaded with beautiful photos of her simple yet elegant food! Most of all I love trying out her recipes because every time I just can't get enough of her flavor combinations and everyone else raves about the dishes!  Her food is intuitive, fuss free, casual and familiar, yet grown up and sophisticated enough to impress any foodie. 

I recently went to a BBQ and brought along an AWESOME Avocado Salad of Ina's that I just have to share with you because everyone at the party requested a copy of the recipe on my way out!  It is a simple, chop only, salad using fresh in-season ingredients.  It paired nicely next to dogs, as I am sure it would taste yummy with any protein: grilled chicken, salmon, flank steak! I added some ingredients that I just can't live without in the summer like cilantro and corn. Otherwise her recipe is spot on! Try it out and let me know what you think!!! 

Prep Time:10 min Serves: 6 servings


  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and 1/2-inch diced
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup small diced red onion
  • 2 tablespoons minced jalapeno peppers, seeded (2 peppers)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (2 limes)
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 2 ripe Hass avocados, seeded, peeled, and 1/2-inch diced
  • I added: 1 bunch of fresh cilantro chopped
  • I added: 1 can (15 ounce) organic sweet corn, rinsed and drained
  • I added:  1 red and yellow bell pepper, seeded and 1/2-inch diced as well


Place the tomatoes, yellow pepper, black beans, red onion, jalapeno peppers, and lime zest in a large bowl. Whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, salt, black pepper, garlic, and cayenne pepper and pour over the vegetables. Toss well.

Just before you're ready to serve the salad, fold the avocados into the salad. Check the seasoning and serve at room temperature. (Keeps well in fridge for a few days). Enjoy!!!


  1. She really is! I just love her whole vibe! Can't wait to get her latest cookbook, Back to Basics!

  2. Maria - we are so much a like. I just brought a variation of this to a party last week. Miss you!