The great greens debate: salad or garnish? Garnish or salad? Either way you really should eat it since it is your only green vegetable today. Salads can be complicated, with the various fruit, nut, seed, and cheese combos creating endless takes on the spring mix salad. Or salads can be on the simple side, like the purple kale they delicately place beside your burger at a fancy diner. Luckily, there are easy salads to make that fall between these two extremes.
My favourite salads are simple to make and eat (and yes, you can dress it up, but spring mix isn’t pretty to eat). You can make these salads on the fly, for impromptu barbecues and picnics, or to have a quick lunch.
Here are my top three simple summer salads:
- Grated carrot salad. Grate as many carrots as you can stand. For me, it may be 4-6 large carrots. Toss with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil, a squeeze of lemon, a touch of Dijon mustard and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. If you need more direction, google “French Carrot Salad” for more ideas. Optional add-ins: chopped parsley or go fancy-pants with nuts and raisins.
- Sliced tomato salad. This Italian classic is usually sliced tomatoes garnished with finely chopped basil, a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Optional add-ins: thinly sliced red onion, feta or bocconcini cheese.
- Cucumber yogurt salad. This might be my favourite. Toss chopped cucumbers with plain or greek yogurt mixed with a drizzle of vinegar, a handful of chopped dill and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Optional add-ins: chopped green onions, chives or chive blossoms.
Simple, right? Now you can make them in your sleep. But please don’t use a knife.