In my younger days salads were a despicable nutrition source (if they could be called that). They usually composed of the basic food items I most loathed-- vegetables. Or even more usual, they were made in the same boring combination day in, day out: iceberg lettuce, tomatoes and cucumber. Can people have less imagination? And how can a restaurant dare push this off as a "house salad" making people believe there is actually nutrition value in this salad (iceberg lettuce and cucumber are essentially water-logged with few vitamins) and people are receiving their daily vegetable intake? I fail to remember, did people actually feel better about themselves after eating one of these poor excuses for a salad.
I am now older, and I like to think wiser. I have come to understand a few of the essential vitamins my body needs, and I have come to understand combinations that taste good-- who knew fruits, vegetables and nuts are delicious? And how many combinations can there be...??
This Thanksgiving, when I asked my brother to aid in the food production (did I mention I made everything this year?), I almost fell to the floor in convulsions when he turned to the iceberg lettuce, began reaching for tomatoes, and announcing he could not find the cucumbers. No, no, no! (No worries, I set him on the right path.)
Saturday I put myself in charge of the luncheon salad. It was delicious, crisp, crunchy, sweet, salty, with each item perfectly indecipherable from the next. I make these salads in various fruit-cheese-nut-greens combinations depending on my fridge's availability and you can do the same. This was today's:
EASY GOURMET SALAD
Serves 4. Prep time= 10min
2 heaping handfuls of mixed greens
1 ripe avacado, sliced
1 ripe pear, sliced
8 dried apricot pieces, chopped
small handful of pecans, whole or chopped, candied or not
top with crumbled feta (or goat or parmesan)
3 sprigs fresh thyme (optional) sprinkle on salad
I covered this with a simple dressing to enhance the flavors:
1/2 orange, juiced (or lemon)
4-5 dashes of hazelnut oil (or olive oil if not available)
fresh pepper to taste
Either juice/ throw all over top or mix separately and put over salad when ready to eat.