Improve Your Usual Salad

Almost all people eat salad at some point in the day, especially those who have a healthy diet. The best thing about this dish is that it is very versatile and compliments almost any recipe. From the garnish of a hamburger, as the accompaniment to a steak. It can even be the first course of the meal or the main diet for breakfast. These last two options are usually more elaborate. Even so, in the long run, they end up becoming a monotonous and boring dish, which requires an effort to consume.

So that this does not happen and each day is a different dish, you have to reinvent the salad itself. Put aside the speed of preparing the dish and dedicate effort so that each bite is an explosion of flavor on the palate, refreshing, crisp, light, and healthy. Without forgetting that it has to provide the feeling of being full and satisfied with the portion eaten.

To get different textures and flavors every day, you can mix salty with sweet, or spicy. Also, crunchy foods with other creamier ones. As many combinations as you can imagine, the result will be a healthy, tasty, and delicious dish for the palate. From the typical salad with lettuce, tomato, and carrot, to a dish worthy of a chef.

Balance of flavors

At Ngam restaurant in New York, chef Hong Thaimee prepares a classic papaya salad. He says, he provides in every bite the freshness of tomato, the tartness of tamarind and lemon, and the sweetness of hemp. To recreate this union, the chef reminds us that every salad should have something acid, sweet, and a bit of will.

Variety of textures

“I love the puree in the salad,” says chef Zach Pollack of Alimento restaurant in Los Angeles. He makes a chopped chickpea salad that offers two new textures: Crunchy (when fried) and Creamy (when mashed). The puree gives body to the salad and also acts as a condiment. The best ingredients to make the puree are all those that contain starch, such as sweet potatoes or carrots.

Beyond the green

In Portland, Oregon, there is a restaurant called Departure Restaurant + Lounge. In which they go a step beyond the traditional salad. Chef Gregory Gourdent has eliminated all vegetable products from his dishes and has replaced them with boiled, marinated, preserved sautéed, or roasted vegetables. Depending on the texture and flavor you need to balance the dish.

Go big

Chef Cortney Burns of Bar Tartine, San Francisco. He removes the fear to make a great salad and that customers are satiated by eating a plate of salad. To achieve this, he encourages adding rice, protein, seeds, nuts, stews, and even sprouted lentils to all his salad dishes, as he adds variety and breaks up the monotony for the palate.

Perfect pairings of ingredients

Zaytinya restaurant in DC is chef Michael Costa. He is known for his rule of his when combining ingredients: “If they grow together, they go together”. The guideline is based on the seasons of the year, which leads to pairing peas, artichokes, and radishes in spring; tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers in summer; and apples and pumpkin in the fall.

Vegetables to power

“I love broccoli stems even more than crowns,” says owner Jeanne Cheng of Kye’s Santa Monica restaurant. Broccoli is very nutritious and has a great texture and flavor, but it is often neglected and forgotten, for this reason, it is used as a salad in her restaurant. To give it more flavor, it adds bacon and goji berries, also improving the nutritional value. So follow their lead and include some vegetable parts like beet greens, celery, or carrots.

Let your salad breathe

Pollack, chef at Alimento restaurant in Los Angeles says: Never “handle” lettuce. Lettuce needs to breathe and can change its flavor and even its appearance if not prepared properly. It has to be served in a large bowl and drop it into it. Since there is nothing worse than having too much green in a small bowl.

Experiment with dressings

Olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper are the most common dressings, either separately or mixed; you can make a good dressing. But don’t be afraid to be more creative. Chef Gregory Gourdent was inspired by peanut butter to create the coconut dressing, it is a combination of rice vinegar, roasted peanuts, cashews, ginger, and lime. And he serves them with a lettuce leaf as a vinaigrette. Delicious!

Make the most of leftovers

Chef Costa offers a different touch to the salad, proposing to add cold-cooked vegetables since they are a great ingredient in it. Imagine, having fun, enjoying, and inventing how to use the leftovers. Like, as example, roasting brussels sprouts or making caramelized onions. Don’t be afraid to use everyday foods in your salad differently.

1 thought on “Improve Your Usual Salad”

  1. Everything is very open with a really clear explanation of the issues. It was really informative. Your website is very useful. Many thanks for sharing!


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