Monday, March 11

Good Eating Monday: Making an Interesting Salad

Welcome to another new week of March---Sunday is St. Patrick's Day!
I'll have to make some Watergate Salad for my Sunday crowd. That's a mix of instant pistachio pudding, crushed pineapple, cool whip & mini-marshmallows. My family calls it, "Green Fluff."
We finally got the last piece of large furniture back into the house this morning--the desk. Everyone on Sunday was wowed by the new floor.
It's raining now, but it still sunny when we got home from the YMCA this morning and I had time to do a couple yard things, most importantly spread some Weed & Feed for the rain to water in.
Today's Good Eating topic is "Making an Interesting Salad."
I know some of the Air Force kids who come over on Sunday don't like such things as cucumbers, raw mushrooms, chickpeas, red onions or sunflower seeds, so I'm always challenged to create a healthy and colorful salad sans some of the common ingredients.

First I chop up a head of Romaine.

It has a longer shelf life in the frig then many types of lettuce, is versatile and has a high nutrition value.
(By versatile I mean you can grill it, throw it in soup, use it's leaves as scoops or for a wrap instead of bread.)

Romaine stores really well, too.

To process it, you want to rinse it under water, spreading the inner leaves under the running faucet with your fingers, so it gets wet to center. Shake off, then cut off bottom, throw away the first row of outside leaves, separate and layer the rest into a suitable sized rectangular zip-lock plastic container.
 Cover, put in frig and use as needed.
(If the leaves are big, I just cut them in half to fit them in and the core usually fits right into the container. Sometimes, if it's a big romaine, it will take 2 zip-lock containers.)

The Romaine I buy comes sealed in plastic, so I don't have to rush to process it and it will keep in the frig till I'm ready.
However, if your Romaine is not in a sealed bag, but naked, process it right away.

Fixin's I added to a chopped bowl of Romaine last night that everyone loved and gobbled up:
1 cup carrot matchsticks
1/2- 3/4 cup low-fat feta cheese
1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, sliced in half lengthwise (or sliced strawberries or drained mandarin oranges work, too.)
1 cup grapes, sliced in half
1 can mandarin oranges, drained
1/4 cup sliced almonds (or any nut you prefer)
Generous shake of dried oregano.

I've also made salads with nothing but halved grape tomatoes,
mandarin oranges, strawberries & grapes with just a sprinkling of nuts on top.
Since tomatoes are technically a "fruit," it was a lettace fruit salad and was a big hit.
Eat up, me hearties, yo-ho!

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