When temperatures start to soar, cooking and eating a hot meal seems heavy and unappetizing. Raw is the way to go, not only for comfort, but ease of prep. Who wants to be slaving over a hot stove when it’s 90 degrees out? Not me!
Salads make a quick, easy meal in any kind of weather, but they really take center stage in the dog days of summer. Light, cool, refreshing; what’s not to love?
Most people think of lettuce, celery and tomatoes as the base of every salad. Not true! (So boring.) Now is the time to expand your repertoire with the awesome abundance of leafy greens. Ditch your plain old lettuce for a base (or mix) of spinach, kale, cabbage, arugula, radicchio, cilantro or even finely chopped raw Brussel sprouts.
Mixing greens and fruit makes a sweet and interesting twist; think strawberries, blueberries, apples, peaches, mangoes, etc.
And don’t forget to add radishes, spring onions, red peppers, corn and beets; all in season and all delicious.
When it comes to dressings, stick to the vinaigrettes for a lighter taste and less calories. For something different, substitute vinegar for fresh lemon, and taste how the flavors pop!
Salads can be made in advance, used as a side with a great piece of fish, or as a filling meal by adding protein such as chicken, shrimp, tuna, beef, etc.
So the next time you are hot, tired, and looking for something quick and healthy to eat, reach for the mixed greens. This is definitely an old stand-by that deserves another toss.
Tell me about your favorite summer salad recipe below— so I can try it!