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Friday, March 11, 2011

Four Salads

Do you get hungry for salad in the spring?  I do!  I think our bodies want the fresh green lettuce and veggies as part the clearing out process after winter.  That’s my theory, anyway.  But, I know that the fresh fruits and veggies taste extra good in the spring time, especially when you have homegrown lettuce! :-)
Here are four salads that I especially like.  Three are very simple.  If you sometimes forget or struggle to eat fresh fruit, three of these salads might be some help to you.
Blueberry-Melon Salad
This is a summer salad and probably my favorite.  I love the colors and the fresh berries!

As you can see, it only has three ingredients – leafy green lettuce, blueberries and cantaloupe.  I usually serve it with a sweet-sour dressing, honey-lemon is the best.  (I will try to share some dressing recipes later.)
Festive Banana Melon Salad

This salad is quite pretty.  It isn’t much different from the one above.  It has bananas instead of blueberries, and a maraschino cherry is put on top to decorate it.  This, of course, is optional.  (It’s hard to find maraschino cherries here that don’t have high fructose corn syrup in them.)  I serve this with similar dressings as I do the blueberry one.
Another variation of this is to leave out the bananas and add plain cooked chicken breast.  This then becomes a “main dish” salad.

This was an interesting one, but it was actually quite good.  As you can see I sprinkled some toasted sesame over the top of the sweet-sour dressing.  This would be so refreshing on a late winter day, I think! :-)
Chef Salad

This is one to two servings.
This salad is the not-so-easy one.  But, it is almost an entire meal.  All you need to add is some carbohydrate of some sort – bread, chips, biscuits, etc.  How about croutons?
When I make this I layer it.  Lettuce on the bottom.  Next some mixed veggies – cucumbers, carrots, etc.  Then the “julienned” ham slices and the grated cheese.  On that I sprinkled some black pepper.  The tomatoes (cherry or wedges of a larger one) and quartered boiled eggs look decorative around the edges.  Black olives rings would make a nice addition to the top as well.  If you don’t eat ham, try turkey or roast beef deli meat.  It’s good served with a savory dressing – Ranch, bleu cheese, Russian, Italian, Thousand Island, etc.
By the way, with attention to the ingredients these can all be made gluten free.  :-)  Just use a safe dressing and adjust some things in the Chef Salad.

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