Oh Gentle Readers, The Practical Cook would like to tell you she was immune to the pleasures of holiday overindulgence, but that would be a big fat lie. Emphasis, mine. Surrounded by mountains of chocolate and seas of baked goods, I’ve sampled, heartily. To assuage my guilt, and hopefully beat the cholesterol odds in an upcoming test, I’m indulging in another love, salads.
Yes, lean in, you see, I love salads. I love them because they are infinite in variety, and take forever to chew. I’ve found that one of my great pleasures in eating comes from chewing. I would not do well on a smoothie diet, or anything gelatinous in nature. Salads provide that necessary crunch, with optional squish, snap, cold, hot, spicy, etc. Just no French dressing please. Ever.
I thought I hated salads because of a childhood of the orange stuff. It was the 1970’s, and it was de rigueur. Good news, I just greatly prefer vinaigrette. Enough jawing, to the recipe.
Simple Seasonal Salad with a Moroccan Twist (Recipe)
bowlful of lettuce (I used Romaine because it was what I had, would be great with butter lettuce or mixed greens)
diced mango (orange segments would also be lovely)
toasted sliced almonds (put ’em on a plate, microwave them for a minute or two, voila)
2 Medjool dates, pitted and chopped (I get mine at Trader Joe’s, of course, and they are divine)
cooked chicken (optional, would be good, but I didn’t have any)
Compose the above ingredients, and dress lightly with the dressing below. This is a single person order of salad, but the dressing will cover at least two, so feel free to double and share with a friend.
White Balsamic Vinaigrette Recipe
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 tablespoon white Balsamic vinegar
pinch of salt
2 Tablespoons good olive oil
orange zest (if you can, it is delish)
Combine OJ and vinegar with salt, stir until salt dissolves. Whisk or stir in olive oil until it emulsifies slightly. Add zest and stir. Dress your salad, it’s waiting for you.
This salad is different, light, and full of various flavors. Enjoy!
What’s in your salad bowl these days? How do you feel about French dressing? Post a comment below, or Tweet my way!
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Up next, One Ingredient, Three Ways: Parmesan Rinds.