Friday Recipe Exchange: Fresh and Light

tamara jicama slaw

From our Food Goddess, TaMara:

A friend called me early last week and said, let’s go away to the hot springs. Well, heck, why not, I needed a break, so we threw some swim suits in the car and drove down to New Mexico. After a day of soaking we headed to the onsite restaurant where a simple side dish inspired tonight’s featured recipe. A light, easy, flavorful and completely unexpected salad.

But before we get to that I have an assortment of salads for you to choose from:

Frequent contributor, Josh D. shares his recipe for Corn and Black Bean Salad here.

A trip to the international market inspired several Unusual Fruit Salads (recipes here).

And just in time for Mother’s Day, a fresh, light Spring Potato Salad (click here).

What are your plans for the weekend? We’re expecting a wet and wild Mother’s Day, so barbecuing and gardening are out. What’s on your menu? Any unusual and unexpected salads in your recipe box?

Tonight’s featured recipe takes what is usually an afterthought in a green salad and makes it the star to delicious results. Jicama becomes a slaw that is crunchy, sweet, tangy and really fresh tasting. I was completely surprised when I saw it on the menu and even more surprised at how good it was. I knew I’d be trying to recreate it the moment I returned home. This is what I came up with:

Jicama Slaw
I used my mandoline slicer to julienne the jicama and the cucumber. You can use the large blade on a box shredder if you don’t have a mandoline.

1 cup plain Greek yogurt
3 tbsp lime juice
2 tbsp cider vinegar
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp ground cumin
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
tamara jicama
3 cups shredded or julienned jicama (peeled before shredding)
1 English cucumber*, washed and julienned
1 sweet bell pepper, thinly sliced (red, orange or yellow)
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 tbsp chopped Italian parsley

Combine the yogurt, lime juice, cider vinegar, sugar, salt and pepper and whisk to combine. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow flavors to develop.

Combine the jicama, cucumber, sweet pepper and raisins in a large bowl and add the dressing. Toss gently but thoroughly to combine. Season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Just before serving toss with walnuts and parsley.

*I like the flavor of English cucumbers and they are unwaxed so I don’t peel them and they don’t need to be seeded. Peel and seed waxed cucumbers if substituted.

That’s it for this week. If you missed it, the weekly menu of Bacon Squash Campanelle and Panna Cotta Parfait is here. Have a great weekend – TaMara

23 replies
  1. 1
    Violet says:

    I really like jicama and orange as a salad. The mom of a guy I dated made it one time and I fell in love with it. Here’s a good recipe to use as a guide. You can add or delete as you like. I like the jalapeno in it but you can omit that and use paprika instead. That’s how the one I had was made. Love it. So good in summer.

  2. 2
    Mnemosyne says:

    One of my all-time picnic hits from Cooking Light — Caesar Potato Salad.

    Their Sweet Onion, Tomato, and Corn Salad with Basil is also a classic.

  3. 3
    Schlemizel says:

    We have a place that deals in olive oils and vinegars. Lat time we were there I bough a small bottle of lime flavored olive oil, it had a really nice flavor. I made couscous using it tonight ant it was fabulous! I’m thinking I may try a risotto with shrimp using the stuff.

  4. 4
    Betty Cracker says:

    I’ve never had jicama, but it sounds intriguing! Will have to try it.

    My brother, sister and I plus our assorted kids are having a picnic with our grandma on Mother’s Day.

    I’m in charge of sandwiches and am making three types I know Grandma is fond of: pimento cheese, pineapple and cream cheese and ham salad. Le sigh!

  5. 5
  6. 6
    WaterGirl says:

    @raven: What a beautiful photo! Makes me want to be on the water. Looks like you are having a great time.

  7. 7
    WaterGirl says:

    I saved the jicama salad recipe so I can try it one of these days. But where the heck do you buy jicama? Or is it like kale, which is suddenly popular so it’s everywhere.

  8. 8
    MomSense says:


    Beautiful! I can’t wait until it warms up so I can do some kayaking.

    My mom is coming over on Mother’s Day and the kids are cooking.

  9. 9
    raven says:

    @WaterGirl: It was a really fun day, I’m pretty beat up from being 25 miles off shore in an open boat but check this baby out.

  10. 10
    raven says:

    @MomSense: Lot’s of that going on here today!

  11. 11
    rikyrah says:

    yum, that looks delicious

  12. 12
    tybee says:


    i don’t think there will be any cobia in that there crick.
    das boot looks kinda like a late 70’s mako.

    ETA: mother’s day will find me and the mother of my (rumored) chirrens taking a canoe over to little tybee and pickanickin on what we hope to be a deserted beach.

  13. 13

    I did a cold green bean salad that was pretty good. Just steam and blanch some green beans, and then toss ’em in the dressing and let them sit for an hour in the fridge. The dressing was some garlic-infused olive oil, a little Greek yogurt, parmesan cheese, and s&p. Yogurt was tart enough that you didn’t need vinegar but a tish of lemon juice might help if it’s too rich for you. Maybe some crumbled bacon on top too.


  14. 14
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Betty Cracker:

    How is your grandma doing? Of all the people in your family, I think my heart goes out the most to her, just because the normal flow of things was most hideously disrupted for her. If it seems appropriate, please tell her that people she’s never heard of are thinking of her.

    Have a great picnic!

  15. 15
    MomSense says:


    Envious! The ocean temp here was 38 F today.

  16. 16


    We get jicama at our Whole Foods in the summer. Out west you get it all the time.

    It looks like a ginormous, hideously ugly Idaho potato.

  17. 17
    MomSense says:

    If it seems appropriate, please tell her that people she’s never heard of are thinking of her.

    Signing on to that sentiment!!

  18. 18
    Helen says:

    Just cooked my famous (well in this house anyway) zucchini and carrot soup. If I don’t cook on the weekend I spend WAY too much time at McDonalds or the Chinese restaurant or the pizza place; all also known as “the easy way out, when I’m tired after work”

    Simple recipe:
    3 lbs of zucchini
    1 lb carrots (equals 1 bag of baby carrots)
    1 avocado – cut into small pieces
    1 large onion
    Garlic to taste – I use at least 6 cloves, but more like 10
    1 palm full of coriander
    1 palm full of cumin
    1/2 palm full of chili powder
    red pepper flakes to taste ( I do 7 or 8 “shakes” good luck with that)

    Cut up the carrots, onion and garlic an throw into a large pot with a splash of oil (I use canola). Start cooking on medium.

    Cut up the zucchini – throw in the pot with the spices. When the veggies get soft and there’s veggie juice on the bottom of the pot, add two cups (I do 10 oz each cup) of water, but the water depends on how thick you want the soup. I like it thick.

    Cook until the carrots are softish.

    Throw in a blender or “boat motor” it until desired thickness. Add avocado.

    Makes 6 portions.

    Note that there is NO salt in this. I have noticed that if you cook with heat (spicy heat) you do not miss the salt.

    Says the woman who puts salt on McDonald’s fries.


  19. 19
    cckids says:

    @raven: I first read that as “a 30 lb COBRA”, and thought, I’m not looking at that pic for a million bucks.


    Never mind.

  20. 20
    TaMara (BHF) says:

    @WaterGirl: Funny, I never thought of it as regional or seasonal because it’s always in my produce section. And Southern Beale is right, it looks like someone crossed a potato with a turnip. I love it, it’s just a pain in the butt to peel.

  21. 21
    NMgal says:

    Love the Artesian at Ojo, one of my favorite restaurants. Their flash-fried spinach is a wonder. I’ve heard that breakfast and lunch can be uninspired (never tried them) but dinners are great.

  22. 22
    Violet says:

    @WaterGirl: I find jicama in most supermarkets. If you can’t find it where you are, check in stores that cater to the Mexican/Latino population.

    Edited to add: It seems to be found wherever things like ginger are found. It’s not over by the spinach and kale. So look around for it. It might be there but you’ve never noticed it.

  23. 23
    Firebert says:

    I sincerely hope jicama isn’t suddenly becoming popular. It’s my one food allergy, and I really don’t want to spend a week itchy and puffy because some cook got creative.

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