Friday, July 17, 2015

“California Chicken Salad with Craisins®” & A Cocktail Called “Wrapped In Rubies”

July is, on average, the warmest month in most of the Northern hemisphere, where it is the second month of summer. It is the seventh month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian Calendars and one of seven months with the length of 31 days. It was named by the Roman Senate in honor of the Roman general, Julius Caesar it being the month of his birth. Prior to that, it was called Quintilis.

The color for July is "RED" so it's not uncommon for red theme parties to take place in the month of July. Red party foods could be apples, red Jell-O, tomato dishes (tomato sauce), tomato soup, lasagna, strawberries, cherries, pomegranates, blood red oranges, ruby red grapefruit, watermelon, pizza topped with red bell peppers, red velvet cake, red beans, chili, beet salad & we can't leave out salsa! 

The "Ruby" is the birthstone for the month of July.  A birthstone is a precious material that symbolizes the month of birth (in the Gregorian Calendar). There have been many different sets of birthstones used throughout history and in different cultures. In 1912, efforts to standardize them started. The birthstone seems to originate from Biblical times. Rubies are considered the king of gems and represent love, health, and wisdom. It was believed wearing a fine red Ruby bestowed good fortune on its owner. The blood-red stone is said to symbolize strength, vitality, confidence, leadership, and courage. The red ruby is also associated with passion and love. A Ruby is one of the most valuable gemstones and its value increases based on its color and quality. The July Birthstone, the Ruby is considered one of the four precious stones, along with Emerald, Diamond and Sapphire. 

The Ruby is believed to have many healing properties. The stone is associated with the Sun, and was believed by the ancients to preserve physical and mental health of an individual. In the Middle Ages, the stone was thought to have prophetic powers, darkening when danger was imminent. Ivan the Terrible, a Russian tyrant, believed that the ruby was good for the heart, brain, and memory. Sources reveal a thirteenth century prescription to cure liver problems with powered rubies. Rubies were believed to purge the body of toxins, restore youth, and vitality when rubbed on the skin. Physically, rubies are believed to energize and bring balance to the body, stimulate the heart Chakra and spur a passion for life. Emotionally, the stone is believed to motivate the wearer to achieve goals, acquire leadership skills, and accrue wealth.

Birthstones are also assigned to the days of the week according to the recipient's birth. They are as follows: Monday: Pearl, Tuesday: Garnet, Wednesday: Cat's Eye, Thursday: Emerald, Friday: Topaz, Saturday: Sapphire, Sunday: Ruby.

July’s flowers are called Larkspur, or the Water Lily. Water Lilies are plants that live in freshwater areas in temperate and tropical climates around the world. There are about 70 species of water lilies around the world. With its simple form, feelings of open heart and devoted attachment are attributed to these flowers.

I have two recipes for this week, one is called “California Chicken Salad with Craisins®” A light and easy chicken salad made with the ruby red cranberries. A perfect sandwich for a hot and lazy afternoon lunch or evening meal. The second one is a cocktail that will make your mouth water with a refreshing drink called “Wrapped In Rubies” using flavored vodka. Delicious and red for the month of July…

“California Chicken Salad with Craisins®

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4 sandwiches


3 cups shredded cooked chicken
1/2 cup Ocean Spray® Craisins® Original Dried Cranberries
1/4 cup chopped red, yellow, or orange bell peppers
1/4 cup sliced green onions
2 tablespoons sliced black olives
1/2 cup Ranch dressing (regular or light)

8 slices whole grain bread
4 large Romaine lettuce leaves
1 large avocado, peeled, cut into thin slices

In a large bowl, stir together all chicken salad ingredients; set aside. To assemble sandwiches: Place 1 large lettuce leaf on top of 1 slice bread. Top with about 1/ 4 of the avocado slices. Place about 1 cup salad on sandwich; top with 1 piece of bread. Secure sandwich with wooden picks. Refrigerate leftovers.

(Recipe taken from:


“Wrapped In Rubies”

Smirnoff® Ruby Red Grapefruit Vodka is intensely citrus and fresh – rich ruby red grapefruit flavor with a slight hint of sweetness.

(Serves: 4)
6 oz. Smirnoff® Ruby Red Grapefruit Vodka
6 oz. ruby red cranberry juice

Build in a glass over ice. Garnish with a half-wheel of orange or grapefruit.

(Please Drink Responsibly!)

Till Next Time……………………………….............................

Copyright © 2015 “Family Plus Food Equals Love” All Rights Reserved 


  1. There is so much red fruit and vegetables at this time of year and I can see why red is the colour of July, it is the color of summer!
    A relative of mine always carries different types of stones in her pockets. When I asked her why she did that, she replied that each of them has different properties. It is interesting.
    Your salad and sandwich look yummy so does your cocktail. Perfect for summer. I hope you are well Dottie and recovering well from your illness. Have a nice and relaxing weekend xx

    1. Dear Alida,
      Grazie, for your comment...Yes, you are correct, there are so many fruits and veggies that are RED, and that is good for you as well. I also have crystals that I carry which contain healing properties such as Turquoise. There are so many that help....If you are interested just go google crystals with properties. It really is very interesting and it works. I am so glad that you liked this post and recipes. As you said perfect for a summer day. I am doing much better thanks for asking...soon I will be back to normal again. You also enjoy your weekend too dear friend.
      Ciao..for now Dottie :)

  2. Good afternoon dear Dottie ,
    Love the post and as usual , you made a great come back .
    The different red vegetables ar just gorgeous , love them all.

    The chicken salad looks delicious , never would have thought to use Ocean Spray Craisins dried cranberries in it , so healthy my kids will love this sandwich .
    I have heard of Ruby Red Grapefruit Vodka ,Now I can try it out on guests.
    Wonderful post my friend , remember take it slow and easy .
    See you in September thanks for sharing And may the days bring healing . Nee :)

    1. Dear Nee,
      Thanks for your comment....Yes, I think I am almost back to myself again. Glad that you enjoyed this post and the recipes are so easy and perfect for a hot summer day. I promise that I will go slow...and rest this weekend. Enjoy your trip...see you in September...(wasn't there a song called "See you in September," years ago?) Have fun...Blessings dear friend...
      Dottie :) x

  3. Dear Dottie, July was always a big birthday month growing up. My dad and grandma and other family members were in July. We always had a big birthday bbq and the memories are wonderful.
    I love the color red as did my mom and so does Michael. If I am correct my mom used to say it was good luck.
    Foods that are red are supposed to be filled with vitamins and all things healthy.
    The recipes are delicious!! A cool chicken salad sounds wonderful with this heat.
    Please stay cool and keep getting better each day. xoxo Catherine

    1. Dear Catherine,
      Thank you for your comment...I had problems with my PC and was not able to go online for over a week. Just got back my tower and my computer man fixed everything...So glad that you enjoyed this post....I will be posting another recipe soon. Now off to your blog to see what I have missed again...Have a blessed week...It's going to be HOT this week..
      Dottie :)

  4. Love chicken salad! Either all by itself, or stuffed into a sandwich. This looks wonderful! Looks like a fun drink, too -- thanks.

    1. Hi John,
      Thanks for your comment. I am so glad that you enjoyed this post and recipe. Yes, chicken salad is one of my favorites too! I had problems with my PC and was not able to go online for over a week. Just got back my tower and my computer man fixed everything..Now off to see what I missed on your blog last week...have a great week!
      Dottie :)