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Recipe of the week April 10: Salad

Posted by on Apr. 10, 2011 at 6:27 PM
  • 19 Replies

 

In the last few decades the salad has become a full participant in our meal-time activities, but it spent a long, hard time reaching that acceptance. Today one can walk into almost any restaurant and expect to find at least a small choice of salads big and hearty enough to make a meal of, but it wasn't always so. Once relegated to either anappetizer or a side dish, it was a meal only for people who where either watching their figure or recovering from a medical problem. The salad was considered effete at best and a dietary chore at worst.

Salad prejudice dates back several hundred years ago, when eating raw food was considered the next best thing to suicide. Food handling and storage was unhygienic. The causes of disease were little understood. It was, if you will, the Dark Age of Vegetables. People of that time figured the best way to avoid getting sick from their food was to cool the disease (and the flavor, and the nutrients) right out of it.

It took a cooking revolution that lasted from the early 1800's to the late 1980's to get salad into its rightful place on our menus. Salad pioneers at New York's Delmonico's Restaurant began creating tasty salad dishes for their wealthy clientele in the mid-1800's, putting the salad on the american culinary map. For a long time salads remained a dish of the elite, saddling salads with a hoity-toity reputation in most of the country. California was more accepting, however, even in the gold-rush days, paving the way for great american/californian salads, like the Caesar and Crab Louis.

Today both health and flavor conscious americans make salad a regular part of their diet. While nutritional education and evolving attitudes have contributed to the vindication of the salad, it was the persistence of salad makers and lovers that really made the salad what it is today. So when you enjoy your next salad, you can feel good that you're no only eating haalthy, you're participating in one of the great culinary success stories.

How often do you have salad? What do you like in your salad, and on it?

by on Apr. 10, 2011 at 6:27 PM
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Replies (1-10):
epoh
by on Apr. 10, 2011 at 8:05 PM
I like any and all kinds of salads. Now that it's going to get warmer we'll be eating them at least once a week. I have two salads on my menu tonight :)
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Kimberly954
by Kim on Apr. 10, 2011 at 8:06 PM

Not often but I do really like the chinese chicken salad and the spinach and shrimp salad at applebees and at cheesecake factory the ONLY thing I ever get there is the BBQ ranch chicken salad because it is soooooooo good. Ok, now I want one and the closest cheesecake is kind of far.

StefInIdaho
by on Apr. 10, 2011 at 9:13 PM

We have a salad usually 3-4 times per week as a side with dinner and a few times a month as a main course. Tonight we just had green leaf lettuce w/ carrots, radishes, purple cabbage, cherry tomatoes, red onion, and celery in Brianna's New American Dressing.

I love love love Brianna's (organic) Salad Dressings... and if I am using pre-made, that is all we use... the blush wine, asian style, and french vinaigrette are also favorites.

I also like to make my own vinaigrettes to monitor sodium content... even simple ones like lemon vinagrette (1 part lemon juice to 2 parts salad oil and a dash black pepper) or asian style using rice wine vinegar...

We use a variety of lettuces... from iceberg to spinach ro mixed greens to mesculin or baby romaine....

librosamante
by on Apr. 10, 2011 at 10:09 PM

I am having two women from church over on Tuesday night to do some planning for the youth group... plan to prepare a big salad with baby lettuce, spinach, avocado, tomato, celery, and carrots.  I will add some chicken I grilled tonight for the side...    I am thinking...salad, bread, and tea..  easy dinner...

lastlaffarizona
by on Apr. 10, 2011 at 10:48 PM

I love any kind of salad.  Spinach is my favourite and I have a lot of different ways to make it.  It is good in a pita or wrap if you want a bit more substanial meal.  The recipe I like the best is with orange segments, dried cranberries, almonds and pumpkin seeds.  I add chicken or shrimp if I want a bit of a change.  The dressing is oil, flavoured wine vinegar of your choice, sugar and cinnamon.  It is truly yummy!  Now I want some!

Serenity75
by on Apr. 11, 2011 at 11:34 PM

 I try to include a salad with every dinner and I usually just have a garden salad by itself for lunch.  I can't get enough.

SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 12, 2011 at 9:18 AM

Sounds easy and delicious! Wish I was coming over. 

Quoting librosamante:

I am having two women from church over on Tuesday night to do some planning for the youth group... plan to prepare a big salad with baby lettuce, spinach, avocado, tomato, celery, and carrots.  I will add some chicken I grilled tonight for the side...    I am thinking...salad, bread, and tea..  easy dinner...

 

SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 12, 2011 at 9:26 AM

 I like Brianna's dressings, too.

Quoting StefInIdaho:

We have a salad usually 3-4 times per week as a side with dinner and a few times a month as a main course. Tonight we just had green leaf lettuce w/ carrots, radishes, purple cabbage, cherry tomatoes, red onion, and celery in Brianna's New American Dressing.

I love love love Brianna's (organic) Salad Dressings... and if I am using pre-made, that is all we use... the blush wine, asian style, and french vinaigrette are also favorites.

I also like to make my own vinaigrettes to monitor sodium content... even simple ones like lemon vinagrette (1 part lemon juice to 2 parts salad oil and a dash black pepper) or asian style using rice wine vinegar...

We use a variety of lettuces... from iceberg to spinach ro mixed greens to mesculin or baby romaine....

 

KamsOne
by Jen on Apr. 12, 2011 at 9:37 AM

 We eat a ton of salad in the summer, not so much in the winter.  We are pretty simple though, just iceberg lettuce (I don't like the leafy stuff), cucumber, carrots, maybe celery if I happen to have any, black olives and sometimes I'll cube up some sharp cheddar and put it in there.  Radishes occasionally because DH likes them but I'm not a fan. 

SweetLuci
by Luci on Apr. 13, 2011 at 5:47 PM

 Basic salad is whatever looks good at the farmer's market-lettuce-Romaine, spinach, butter lettuce or field greens-DH doesn't like "white lettuce"-his name for Iceberg. Tomatoes, cucumbers, carrots, celery, green onions, just about any raw veggie I have on hand. Then I add homemade croutons, olives, artichoke hearts, cheese. Not all those at once, just whatever I have available. I love creamy dressings, but try to make more vinegarettes in Spring and Summer, they just seem lighter.  Does anyone make their own dressings?  

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