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Your best easy salads for a Memorial Day BBQ

I have offered to bring 3 salad type dishes to my friend's BBQ Memorial Day weekend. I am seeking easy, 5 ingredients or less, no mayo dishes and amazing fantabulous..come on, gimme your best recipes...

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  1. How about cucumbers, thinly sliced, with rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, toasted sesame oil and sesame seeds. And if permitted a sixth ingredient...a little sugar.

    5 Replies
    1. re: LA Buckeye Fan

      I do cucumber, dill, rice wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

      1. re: Bellachefa

        I do the same thing but with fennel as well, and both sliced on a mandolin. Yum!

        1. re: Midlife

          looking fowrard to trying the fennel cuke combo with my garden dill!

      2. re: LA Buckeye Fan

        Here's my favorite: Asian Cucumber Salad: (I try to get the Japanese cukes, 2nd choice: Persian.
        3rd would be hot house, would probably remove the seeds of this one.)

        1/4 cup rice vinegar (not seasoned) or distilled white vinegar
        1 Tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice
        3 Tablespoons water
        3 Tablespoons sugar
        1/2 teaspoon salt (I use sea salt)
        6 pickling cucumbers. halved lengthwise and thinly sliced (about 2 1/2 cups) I peel some of the outside, not all.
        2 shallots, thinly sliced
        1/2 Serrano chile (or more) minced
        6 sprigs of cilantro, chopped (I prefer to omit the cilantro.)

        Combine vinegar, lime juice, water, sugar and salt in a mixing bowl. Stir well and add the cukes, shallots, chile and cilantro.

        I think it's even better after being in fridge a few hours. I usually double the recipe because it lasts in fridge a few days and is great to snack on.

        1. re: walker

          Ahh, very nice. Our family's version is similar, but with 1-2 cloves of finely minced garlic added.

      3. This has more than 5 ingredients, but I don't count the olive oil and salt & pepper. It serves 2 of us for lunch with no other dishes, but expands very easily.

        Pasta Blue Cheese Salad

        ¼ lb penne rigate
        1 clove garlic, very finely minced
        3 Tbsp olive oil
        Juice of ½ lemon
        ¼ C. coarsely chopped walnuts
        4 oz crumbled bleu cheese
        1 C. baby spinach or salad greens
        Salt & pepper

        Place all ingredients except pasta in a large serving bowl. Cook pasta al dente. Drain and immediately toss with ingredients in the bowl. Add more S&P and olive oil if desired.

        1. watermelon, feta, mint, lime, a little olive oil if you like, (or not,) pepper.

          shaved asparagus, lemon juice, toasted pine nuts, olive oil, s&P

          3 Replies
          1. re: magiesmom

            ok add more ingredients..keep em coming...

            1. re: phelana

              shredded carrots, cumin, olive oil, lemon juice maybe raisins
              Have you seen mark Bittman's 101 salads article?
              http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/22/din...

              1. re: magiesmom

                Thanks for the link, magiesmom! It added some inspiration to my grocery shopping this afternoon!

          2. Nothing like a strictly fruit fruit salad - no sugar, just fruit garnished with a bit of mint.

            Also love a tomato balsamic basil and fresh mozzarella salad - maybe with some sliced sweet onion or not.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Bellachefa

              +1 Honeydew and galia melon balls do this particularly well, especially if you can stick it in the freezer til it's almost frosty.

            2. How about a raw kale salad? It holds up well even once it's dressed. Some combos I like: kale, chickpeas, avocado and red onion with a lemon-cumin vinaigrette; kale, julienne carrot and apple, tahini dressing.

              8 Replies
              1. re: piccola

                mmm...kale dressed with goodhealthgourmet's peanut butter dressing!

                1. re: mollyomormon

                  thanks for the shout out, chica! the dressing alone is over the OP's "5 ingredient" limit, but i'll link to it anyway just in case:
                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6918...

                  1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                    Meh, I counted the dressing as a separate five-ingredient recipe. It's a loophole. :)

                    1. re: piccola

                      ha! when i first saw "Meh" i thought you were about to say you don't like my recipe.

                      i can get on board with the loophole ;) and in that case i also second the earlier suggestion for Super Slaw.

                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                        Oh, I would never be that dismissive about someone's recipe. It's just plain rude!

                        1. re: piccola

                          that doesn't always stop people around here from expressing their opinions ;)

                          but yes, i would have been quite taken aback at something like that coming from you because you're usually a sweetheart.

                          anyway, back to kale salad for a minute...ever toss in some dried cherries or currants? it's a delicious twist, particularly with a white balsamic or champagne vinaigrette.

                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                            Aw, thanks. I'm a firm believer in the Golden Rule.

                            I haven't tried adding dried fruit, but now that you mention it, it seems like a genius idea. I mean, I combine currants with cooked bitter greens all the time, so why not in a salad?

                            1. re: piccola

                              it's a really great combination. you can use golden raisins or dried cranberries too - i just prefer cherries or currants.