Your Life A to Z

Olive Oil Granola, Lemon Pasta Salad and Strawberry and Mexican Lime Salsa


Olive Oil Granola (GF)

2 cups rolled oats (not instant)
1 cup toasted pecans
1/4 cup toasted sesame seeds
1/2 cup toasted sunflower seeds
1/4 cup toasted flaxseed
1/4 cup Queen Creek Olive Mill Vanilla Bean Olive Oil 
1/2 cup maple syrup

Mix the oat, nuts and grains in a large bowl. 
Measure oil into the measuring cup and swirl it around before pouring into bowl. 
Then measure out the maple syrup in the same, unwashed cup. (The oil will help the maple syrup exit the cup.) 
Toss everything together until evenly coated and then pour out into a baking pan. I use a large roasting pan, as it keeps everything contained. A cookie sheet with a lip also works, but you have to stir it slightly more carefully if you use that. 
Bake at 300 degrees for 30 minutes, turning it with a spatula every ten minutes or so. You want everything to be an even golden brown. 

Lemon Pasta Salad
This is a fresh summer salad that can be made ahead for a dinner side or a picnic at the park.


1 pound 
1 pound asparagus ends trimmed
1 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup Queen Creek Olive Mill White Balsamic Vinegar 
1/4 cup Queen Creek Olive Mill Meyer Lemon Olive Oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup freshly chopped basil leaves
1 cup frozen peas, defrosted
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain and rinse. Set aside. In another large pot of boiling salted water, add the asparagus and blanch until bright green and slightly tender, about 3 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and shock in icy cold water. Remove from the water and dry well. Cut the asparagus into bite sized pieces on the bias. Whisk together the mustard, garlic, vinegar, and olive oil in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Combine the reserved asparagus and pasta in a large serving bowl. Add the tomatoes, basil, peas, parmesan, and the olive oil dressing. Toss with tongs to coat the salad well. Taste and add additional salt and pepper, if needed. Cool in the refrigerator.

Strawberry and Mexican Lime Salsa
This sweet salsa is refreshing and easy to make! Use it as a dip, sauce or topping to chicken or fish.

Yield: 4-6 servings

1 pint strawberries, hulled and diced
1 jalapeno, stem and seeds removed, finely diced
Half of a small red onion, peeled and finely diced (about 1/2 cup)
2/3 cup finely-chopped fresh mint, loosely-packed
1 tablespoon Queen Creek Olive Mill Mexican Lime Olive Oil
2 tablespoons Queen Creek Olive Mill Strawberry Balsamic Reduction
Salt and pepper to taste

Toss all ingredients together until combined.  Season with extra salt and pepper, if needed.

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