Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Summer Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette & Feta

I am so pleased to announce that Roberta Isleib (Lucy Burdette) and I (Daryl Wood Gerber aka Avery Aames) have been nominated for the Anthony Awards for our short stories. Whee!

The Anthony Awards are literary awards for mystery writers presented at the Bouchercon Mystery Convention since 1986. The award are named for Anthony Boucher (1911-1968) one of the founders of the Mystery Writers of America.

Click this title to read Roberta's "The Itinerary". You can catch my story, "Palace On The Lake" from FISH TALES: THE GUPPY ANTHOLOGY on my website.

Speaking of fish...

Oh, wait, no, I don't want to talk about fish today. I want to talk about's almost summer, right? [Can you tell I'm a little befuddled? I'm waiting for a baby to come from my nephew and his wife - my nephew is like a son to me! So sweet. On pins and needles.]

Anyway, back to summer. Summer should be simple, easy, and fun, don't you think? It's time to spend hours outside, drink in the sun, inhale the fabulous aromas of barbecue and ocean (lake) air.

Summer is also one of the best times to enjoy fresh vegetables and fruits. I love going to the local farmers' market and picking up tomatoes, lettuce, and all sorts of goodies.  One of the easiest things to do to liven up a salad is sprinkle it with cheese.  Feta offers a terrific tang to just about any salad. 
My husband loves to add Greek olives and red onions to his salad. In addition, I like to add artichoke hearts. Yum!  (Granted, I don't get the artichokes at the farmers' market. I'm all about efficiency sometimes. But don't cheap out on artichoke hearts. There is a difference in certain canned or jarred goods!)

Make your salad with your preferred ingredients.

DRIZZLE with balsamic vinaigrette and you're good to go.  Enjoy your greens. They're so good for you!


(Yields: one cup, approx.)


1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black or white pepper, ground
1 teaspoon fresh or dried basil


Mix the vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper and basil in a blender.  Slowly add the olive oil so the mixture emulsifies.    [If you're not going to use the dressing right away or use all of it, cover and refrigerate. Shake well before using.]


* * *

If you don't figure it out yet, I, Avery Aames, am also

Daryl is what my husband actually calls me.

Here's how to learn more about Avery Aames or Daryl Wood Gerber.

Click this link to get to "our" website.

Chat with Avery on Facebook and Twitter.

Daryl will have a new series out in 2013:
featuring a cookbook store owner
who is an avid reader and admitted foodie!

"Like" Daryl's page on Facebook and "follow" Daryl on Twitter.
She doesn't say all the same things "Avery" does. Promise.

And if you haven't done so, sign up for the mailing list
 so you can learn about upcoming events, releases, and contests!

Say cheese!



  1. Avery/Daryl - Huge Congrats to you and Lucy (aka Roberta) for your Anthony nominations. This is such wonderful news. I hope you both are popping champagne! You deserve it!

    Lovely recipe today. Feta is one of my favorite cheeses, and I could dive right into that salad, too. Cheers and best wishes also on your nephew's (soon to be) new arrival!

    ~ Cleo

    1. Thanks, Cleo! I appreciate all the good vibes.

      ~Daryl / Avery

  2. Congratulations on your nominations, Daryl and Roberta! I'm so excited for you!

    Oddly enough, even though I love most foods, feta isn't among them. But I love balsamic vinaigrette! Bring on the salad, but hold the feta! ; )

    ~ Krista

    1. You know, Krista, I didn't use to like feta either, but then I started trying different kinds and found one I like plus it goes great with the balsamic dressing and olives and onions. The bite works. Not all feta is the same. ;) I'm not at home or I would tell you the maker.
      Avery ska Daryl

  3. And add a tbs of stone ground mustard (or some of that spicy horseradish mustard if you dare) for mustard vinaigrette (my current passion (but I will grow out of that soon).

    And congrats on the nomination. Of course the honor is in the recognition just to be nominated (but the glory is reserved for the winner)... Good luck, off to read your story