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Post your smash-hit salad recipes

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 

We all have a couple up our sleeve -- our go-to salads that we bring to parties because we know everyone will LOVE them. Let's share our very very favorites! 

 

I have two: a spinach salad and a southwest salad

 

Spinach Salad

 

1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

1 clove garlic, minced

2 Tbsp brown sugar

1 Tbsp curry powder (no one has ever said, "Oh, there's curry in here!" It's subtle)

1 Tbsp soy sauce

1 pkg baby spinach

1 gala apple, thinly sliced

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

1/2 cup pecans, toasted (sometimes I candy them instead -- toast them in a pan, then add a little butter, salt, and sugar)

 

Whisk together olive oil, vinegar, garlic, sugar, curry powder, and soy sauce. In a large bowl, toss the spinach, onion, and apple together, then top with dressing (you may not use all the dressing -- start with half and add more to your taste). Top with pecans just before serving. 

 

***********************************************

 

Southwest Salad (may be used as a side dish or as a dip scooped up with chips)

note: I love a good southwest salad, but most have too much raw onion taste for my liking, so I use mostly cooked onions to give an overall sweetness, adding just a bit of raw onion for a subtle sharpness

 

2 Tbsp olive oil

1/2 yellow onion, minced

1 red bell pepper, diced

1 cup frozen (or fresh) corn

salt/pepper to taste

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

2 roma tomatoes, diced

1/4 red onion, minced

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

Juice of 1 lime

1/2 cup cotija cheese, crumbled

1 avocado, diced

 

Saute yellow onion in olive oil until translucent, add bell pepper, corn, and salt/pepper, saute until bell pepper is tender-crisp. Remove from heat, stir in beans, set aside to cool. Once cool, add tomatoes, red onion, cilantro, cotija cheese, and lime juice, mix well. Gently fold in avocado just before serving. (I sometimes add maybe half of a seeded jalepeno too for some heat.)

post #2 of 41

oh!  oh!  i have one.  yours look fantastic too!

this is on the sassy radish but i think it was a NYTimes blog recipe first...

it's a roasted sweet potato salad with black beans and chili dressing (which is jalie and lime)

SO good.  here's the link.

 

p.s. it's veg*n

p.p.s. it's relatively inexpensive to make in large quantities.

post #3 of 41

 

I almost always bring a salad to potlucks.  The easiest, by far, is my lentil salad:

- 1 lb. dry lentils

- 1 cube veggie boullion

- 1/2 tsp cinnamon

- 1/2 tsp ground cumin

- 4 tbsp. olive oil

- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped

- 1 sweet onion, peeled and chopped

- 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed

- 2 stalks chopped celery

- half a bunch of fresh parsley, minced, or maybe cilantro if I have it

- 1/2 a red and/or green bell pepper, chopped

- 1/2 cup cooked, shelled edamame

- 1  cup chopped cucumber 

- juice of one lime or lemon, whatever I have on hand

- dash of smoked paprika (optional) -- you could also substitute ground chipotle pepper if you want to add a bit of heat  

 

I cook the lentils, boullion and spices 30 minutes or so, drain, and cool, then add the rest of the ingredients (whatever I have in the fridge -- I rarely have all of these things at once). 

 

***************************************

 

I also have a fail-safe curried grain salad that is really excellent.  The recipe calls for orzo pasta, but it also works well with cous cous (especially Palestinian cous cous or other larger-grain cous cous) or sturdy cooked grains such as brown rice, wheatberries, kamut or spelt. 

 

2 12 oz. boxes orzo, cooked according to package directions and rinsed in cold water
2 stalks celery, diced
1 carrot, peeled and sliced thinly (or grated)
1 cup dried cranberries
3/4 cup sliced raw almonds
1 red pepper, minced
1 green pepper, minced
2 green onions, sliced thinly
1/2 red onion, minced
1/2 bunch cilantro, washed & chopped finely
1/4 cup olive oil
3 Tbsp. vinegar (any kind)
juice of one lime (optional)
1 tbsp. garlic powder or garlic salt
1 tsp. powdered turmeric
2 tbsp. curry powder
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. powdered chipotle pepper or cayenne (optional)
salt and black pepper to taste
 
Mix all ingredients in a large bowl.  Cover and chill 1 hour before serving.


A fun thing for fall: serve the salad in a pumpkin shell bowl. 

To make the pumpkin shell:
1) Cut the top off a medium (2-3 lb) pie pumpkin. Slice away extra flesh from top.  Set aside.
2) Use a spoon to remove seeds and stringy parts of pumpkin.  Reserve seeds.
3) Using your hands, cover inside and outside of pumpkin (and top) with a layer of olive oil. 
4) Replace top, set the pumpkin in a shallow dish filled with 1-2 inches of water. 
5) Bake 1-1 1/2 hours at 350 degrees or until the flesh is very soft and rind is hard and color has darkened considerably. (You can also toast the pumpkin seeds at the same time; just rinse in cold water, mix with 2 tbsp. olive oil, sprinkle with salt and a little chili powder, and spread on a cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes, stirring frequently, until seeds are a nice even brown.)
6) Remove flesh with a spoon, scraping the sides with a spatula.  (You can puree this in a blender and use in any recipe that calls for canned pumpkin.  Much tastier!  You can also freeze it until you are ready to use it.)
7) Wash rind well with dish soap and warm water.  (Be careful when you do this, as the orange color of the outer rind will rub off on everything it touches). 
8) Allow to dry overnight or longer before using as a serving dish. 
 

post #4 of 41

sushi salad is a favorite here and i love to see the kids eat it up.

 

post #5 of 41

Syrian Fattoush, I've never made this and not had someone ask me for the recipe. Ever. 

 

http://www.plantfoodfabulous.com/2010/09/tale-of-two-salads.html

post #6 of 41

Thanks, I'm definitely going to try these recipes.

post #7 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by jldumm View Post

sushi salad is a favorite here and i love to see the kids eat it up.

 



Do you have a recipe for this?  

post #8 of 41
Tabouleh made with quinoa - cook 1.5 cups of quinoa and chop and mix in a bunch of parsely, a handful of mint, a bunch of green onions, a seeded cucumber and several seeded tomatoes. Dress with 1/2 C EVOO, the juice of one lemon, pinches of cumin and cinnamon and salt to taste. It keeps for a few days and is great to have on hand - paired with pita and hummus for lunch or as a side with dinner.
For a party, I like to bring potato salad made with red potatoes, chopped red onion, dill and sour cream.
Edited by Megan73 - 9/30/11 at 8:34am
post #9 of 41

sushi salad/

we make sushi rice and add

chopped ginger

chopped nori

capers

cucumbers

grated carrots

sesame seeds

sometimes peppers

 ad then we serve with avo cado soy sauce and sirachi. 

someone mentioned we could add can tuna or salmon to it. 

we don't , but if it has been a low protein day we have and egg drop soup with it.

post #10 of 41
My husband loves this black bean /quinoa salad.

Black quinoa (chilled)
black beans
roasted green chilis
chopped tomatoes
corn
chopped cilantro
small amount of olive oil, oregano, salt & pepper
some raw minced garlic.

Mix it all together, and eat with tortillas.
post #11 of 41
post #12 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Megan73 View Post

Tabouleh made with quinoa - cook 1.5 cups of quinoa and chop and mix in a bunch of parsely, a handful of mint, a bunch of green onions, a seeded cucumber and several seeded tomatoes. Dress with 1/2 C EVOO, the juice of one lemon, pinches of cumin and cinnamon and salt to taste. It keeps for a few days and is great to have on hand - paired with pita and hummus for lunch or as a side with dinner.


My favorite ever!! My mouth is watering. Wish I had some. :(

post #13 of 41

Some unfamiliar ingredients...cotija cheese? and cilantro?  I am not sure what they are or if there is a substitute we have here.  Does anyone know any other names for these, or substitutes please?

 

My mouth is watering reading some of these....

 

 

post #14 of 41

I know I've eaten cotija cheese in Mexican restaurants, but also know there is nowhere to purchase it where we live. According to gourmetsleuth.com, freshly-grated parmesan is an acceptable substitute. I would argue there are flavor differences, but that doesn't mean it wouldn't work. If you have access to fresh Romano cheese (If you've ever eaten cacio e pepe with fresh romano, this is what I mean in terms of texture and flavor) I think that might come closer.

 

Cilantro is sometimes erroneously called coriander, as it's the the same plant that produces coriander seeds. (Cilantro being the leaves/stems, coriander being the seeds.) It's also sometimes called Chinese parsley - in fact, it looks a lot like flat-leaf parsley, except the leaves have a sort of serrated edge to them and IME the leaves are softer and the stems thinner. The flavor is quite distinct from parsley, however - you can't really substitute one for the other.

post #15 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caryliz View Post

 

Cilantro is sometimes erroneously called coriander, as it's the the same plant that produces coriander seeds. (Cilantro being the leaves/stems, coriander being the seeds.)

 

My understanding is that British-English-speaking folks generally call the plant AND its seeds coriander, while it's called cilantro in the Americas.  Took me a while to figure that out (i.e., "why are all my Indian cookbooks calling for this coriander stuff?  And where do I get it??")

post #16 of 41

Thanks Caryliz and Comtessa....yes you are right Comtessa we call the leaves and the seeds Coriander...so that would be what I would need to use.

 

Yes we have romano cheese here so I could try that.

post #17 of 41

One of my two pasta salads show up at nearly every food event I host or go to - picnic pasta salad and winter pasta salad. And we have them several times a month for lunch or dinner too. 

post #18 of 41

cotija cheese- you can also use queso fresco, or feta, I have found. They are all pungent, creamy cheeses

post #19 of 41


Quote:

Originally Posted by kitchensqueen View Post

One of my two pasta salads show up at nearly every food event I host or go to - picnic pasta salad and winter pasta salad. And we have them several times a month for lunch or dinner too. 

 

The picnic one sounds good!

 

I wasn't sure what Kale is in the second recipe, but I googled it and it is apparently available here but very rare...I would have to ask a specialty shop to get it in it seems.
 

 

post #20 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by clutterwarrior View Post

Quote:

 

The picnic one sounds good!

 

I wasn't sure what Kale is in the second recipe, but I googled it and it is apparently available here but very rare...I would have to ask a specialty shop to get it in it seems. 

 


Thanks, it's one of our favorites. You could really use any kind of heartier green - Swiss chard, collard greens, even frisee. 

 

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