Now that it appears it might actually be getting warm again, I’m not so anxious to turn on the oven for dinner. I stocked up on fresh veggies this weekend at the store so I decided chopped salad would be a good dinner at least two nights this week.
There really is no true recipe for chopped salad as you are free to add whatever you want to the bowl. I’ll give you some of my tips that might make it present and even taste just a bit better.
- Chop onions and hard veggies (mushrooms, peppers etc.) first and throw in bowl
- Chop tomatoes next and add to other veggies
- Chop lettuce leaves even if it’s “baby”. You want it all to be bite sized. I add in fun leaves like baby romaine, sprouts, spinach and fresh basil or cilantro
- Add hard cheeses to lettuce mix. I love chunks of cheese over shredded. You actually get more flavor that way.
- Toss and dress salad after you’ve added in cheese but before finishing touches
- Plate each serving of this mix and then add protein (chicken/fish) and soft veggies like avocado on top of each plate. This keeps protein from being overly dressed and avocado from getting too soft and gross.
- Place some extra dressing on the table for those like my husband who, ahem, overdress their salads.
- Get creative with ingredients. I love hearts of palm or artichokes in salad. They always make it seem like more than an appetizer. Also, canned tuna works when you just want quick and easy but you could also grill a chicken or fish filet and chop that too. I do this a lot with that one leftover chicken breast I always seem to have. You’d be surprised how far one piece of protein can go in a chopped salad.
For this night’s salad I made my own dressing. The recipe is as follows:
In jar or dressing bottle mix
- 2T red wine vinegar
- pinch of oregano
- 1/8 t garlic salt or 1/4t fresh garlic
- 1t lemon juice
- Shake Well then add 4 T Olive Oil
- Shake again and dress salad.
You may need to make another batch for the table. I did, but this first jar was enough to lightly dress the salad. If you don’t have a jar with a lid you can always use a blender or food processor to mix the dressing. I just saved an old jar with a lid and it has become my dressing jar.
The point is salads don’t have to be boring and they can be large enough to satisfy even hungry men who forget their lunch most days. My husband didn’t even make a sandwich after dinner so I must have done something right!
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