Need a new salad!
I am tasked with the salad course on Thanksgiving (Canadian) this weekend. I tend to bring the same kinds, candied nuts, fruit and greens. Looking for a change up.
Here is my husband's laundry list of dislikes:
I made this last weekend and it is marvelous. My salad had romaine, bacon bits, green onions, and shredded hard boiled egg
FRESH TOMATO SALAD DRESSING
• 3 tomatoes, peeled seeded and finely chopped
• 1/3 cup tomato juice
• 1 garlic clove, crushed
• 2 scallions, finely chopped
• 3 tablespoons parsley, chopped
• 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
• 1 tablespoon lemon juice
• 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• 1/4 teaspoon sugar
• 1/2 cup olive oil
• salt and pepper
1. combine all ingredients in medium bowl.
2. chill for 1 hour.
3. Serve over a garden fresh salad
Mixed greens, thinly sliced red and green apples, red and green grapes (halved the long way), celery, red onion, with a tangy walnut/orange dressing (made in a mini-food processor so that the walnuts get pulverized to make a "creamy" dressing. Okay, so it still has the fruit and greens you were trying to avoid, but it's absolutely delicious, and very light, which counters a heavy Thanksgiving dinner.
Or, a purple cabbage slaw with slivered almonds, shredded carrot, some mandarin orange, scallions, maybe some sunflower nuts, all in a tangy dressing.
I've never made this, but I've seen similar combos in cookbooks: slices of grapefruit and/or orange mixed with slices of avocado, drizzled with a spicy dressing (I've seen chili oil as an ingredient in the dressing, but I can't remember what else was in the dressing recipe - some of the juice squeezed out of the citrus membranes, maybe?). I've always been intrigued by it, but not willing to buy a bottle of chili oil for one recipe.
"Israeli salad": diced tomatoes, diced cucumbers, diced green peppers, finely chopped parsley tossed in a light lemon vinaigrette (or even just in a little bit of lemon juice, no other ingredients). For more bulk, add in a little bit of bulgur if desired, or make a veggie-heavy tabbouleh.
.....and avocado and grapefruit. I knew the list of his seemed short!
I like the sound of the first salad with walnut dressing, might be different enough. Not in the mood for a cabbage slaw, feels like we have had a lot because of all the bbqs.
watermelon salad is yummy! but is it too summery? something I could do to make it more fall? Unfortunately the caviar salad has beans in it.
Perhaps this is why I end up with the same salads all the time!! I appreciate the effort here.
I made a green salad that included Persimmons one year and it was a big hit and very pretty. (Since you live in BC, I would not recommend tomatoes for your salad since they're not likely to have much flavor at that time of year.)
My favorite fall salad -- which would work really well for Thanksgiving -- is an arugula and spinach blend, topped with warm french lentils, oven-roasted pieces of squash or pumpkin (seasoned with either paprika and cinnamon or ras al hanout), and crumbled mild goat cheese. You can also add toasted nuts. Topped with a vinegrette. I think this was an old Bon Appetit recipe...
anakalia- Your favorite fall salad sounds really good to me. Is it this one?
For cleo999 - it also reminded me about this tasty salad from Ina Garten,
While it does have dried cranberries in it, I'm pretty sure I have used dried Montmorency cherries in this too. I also sometimes add or sub spinach for the arugula to change it up.
This is one of my most requested recipes. I actually quadruple the batch of pecans and store them in the freezer. The dressing is so delicious as well. The salad recipe has a "strong cheese" but you can easily serve it on the side. I've added roasted apples or pears to this salad as well. http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...
I bet you're tasked with it because your salads are always yummy and you make it with such care. So even if you're ready to change it up, I'd consider just modifying it with an addition or two, like diced salami, and maybe some (dare I even suggest a processed food) diced American cheese.
How about a broccoli-cauliflower salad? Chop 1 head of each, mix with a couple of ribs of celery sliced, a can of chopped waterchestnuts, a handful of peas, 1/2 pound of fried chopped bacon (omit for vegetarian option), sunflower seeds. For the dressing, mix a cup of mayo, a few dashes of vinegar, 1/4 cup of shredded parmesan. MIx all together and chill for a few hours.
I make a fabulous side dish for Thanksgiving that involves roasted butternut squash cubes, chestnuts and sauteed kale in a black olive vinaigrette. I serve it warm, but I have eaten it cold as well and I think it's delicious either way. Would something like that qualify as a salad for your purposes?
BTW, does anyone other than me find salad to be an odd addition to the Thanksgiving table? I tend to like salad (of the cold, lettuce or greens-based variety) when the weather is warm or I'm trying to eat lightly. For Thanksgiving, I want warm, comforting foods, even if some of them are a bit lighter than others. If I served a salad at Thanksgiving I would probably be left with a bowl of wilting lettuce at the end of the night!
We like Thanksgiving to be a long, many course meal and it's always all adults at our house. So a salad is one of the courses before the main event, when there's a whole lot that goes on the table at once. I try to use autumnal flavors and colors often including a "traditional" vegetable (like squash) that might not be a part of the main meal that particular year.
A few ideas:
Roasted (chilled salad): shallots and/or red onions roasted, butternut squash cubed and roasted, spinach, sundried tomatoes, reduced balsamic and olive oil, lemon zest and crispy sage... with a shaving of mild jarlsberg and chopped roasted pumpkin seeds
New angle of stuffed endive leaves? goat cheese or ricotta mixed with diced onions, celery (i prefer these lightly cooked), lemon zest, crushed pistachios, almond flour, parsley and thyme with a lemon white wine vinaigrette
perhaps a salad with bulgur or barley or quinoa or couscous in it?
sliced hearts of palm, cooked mushrooms, sundried and /or regular tomatoes, roasted red peppers, oregano, basil, roasted garlic, lemon juice and red wine vinaigrette
my favorite simple salad is spinach leaves, very thinly sliced fennel, tomatoes of some incarnation, onions and green beans roasted, generally with blackened shrimp or seared ahi, with a reduced balsamic dressing and S & P of course...
How about a beet caprese salad on a bed of arugula? Roasted beets, thinly sliced, interspersed with sliced fresh mozzarella cheese and sprinkled with julienne basil leaves. Arrange this on a bed of arugula leaves and serve with a balsamic vinegar and good olive oil dressing. Sprinkle coarse salt and finely chopped red onion if you like.
Beets and Oranges with thinly sliced red onion and a light vinaigrette made with rice vinegar.
The very best salad is a Shuna Lydon recipe for Naked Salad:
4 Fuyu persimmons
1-1/2 cups pomegranate seeds
1) Cut top off persimmon. Slice bottom off, being careful not to take too much fruit
2) Peel persimmons, cut four pieces off core the way you might core an apple
3) Dice persimmons into a shape slightly larger than the pomegranate seed
4) Mix pomegranate seeds and diced persimmon gently with a spatula
- This salad will keep refrigerated for about three days but is best eaten fresh.
A light salad we often have is slices of tomato and avocado with a few extremely thin sliced pieces of sweet onion, a vinaigrette of peanut oil, white wine vinegar, and Dijon, and a sprinkling of grey salt...a nice palate cleanser for a big Thanksgiving Meal. Another very light favorite is Bibb lettuce with hazelnut oil and raspberry vinegar.
Even though I just gave you a recipe I'll give you another one. This is defnitely my fav salad ever (uses dried cranberries and strong cheese, but you can change those or use less...the gorgonzola is not very overpowering in this recipe)...
sliced red onions
spinach and mixed field greens
Dressing...here I am running into that measuring issue again...but basicaly to taste:
apple cider vinegar
greek yogurt (adds a nice creaminess to it)
small amount of brown sugar
salt and pepper to taste
You really dont get a "strong cheese" taste from this salad, but I guess that depends on how strong your husbands dislike is. I've had it without the dried cranberries when I've been out and it's still fine.
This is the first chance to say that for me, I'm not speaking for anyone else, that it would be great if the link to a recipe was proceeded by a short description of the dish. That way people can decide if they're interested in the general idea without having to go through the link first. So this one could have been "headlined" as Cheddar, Avocado, Pepper Salad with Maple-Chipotle Vinaigrette before the link. Just a thought.
How about some kind of panzanella salad - rustic bread chunks (toasted or not), tomatoes, cucumbers, red onion, vinagrette. Sorry to be vague, but I tend to use recipes as ideas. You could find lots of examples online or in your recipe books I'm sure, or I can try to be more specific. Also, chef Yotam Ottolenghi has great new salad ideas that are often light, though maybe too "adventurous" for your crowd?
How many people will there be at the dinner? I'm sure you cater to your husband's tastes frequently; maybe a big dinner is the time for you to cook what you want and your husband can just pass on the salad? My kids hate mushrooms so if it's just us I don't use them, even though I love them. When we have people over to eat I will often take the opportunity to make marinated mushrooms (or another side using them) and the kids just don't eat them. Just a thought.