chopped salad

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Last month, I was looking at pictures with my 2-year-old nephew, and when we came to a picture of my sister when she was six months pregnant, he pointed to her and said, “That’s Aunt Bridget!” Wow, thanks buddy. I know my pants fit kind of tight lately, but at least they’re size-six pants!

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So I’m thinking I should eat more salads. Okay, that isn’t the reason – mostly, I just like salads. I like salads served either as the main dish or before the rest of the meal. Too often salads are an afterthought pieced together from iceberg lettuce, out-of-season tomatoes, and bottled dressing, and they’re served alongside a meal that they don’t compliment.

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I know chopped salad hardly needs a recipe – just take your favorite vegetables and serve them over lettuce. I’m just excited about this particular combination – in about a week, I had it for dinner twice and lunch once.

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My salad includes romaine lettuce, along with carrots, cucumbers, celery, red pepper and red onion. I added hard-boiled eggs for protein and avocado to mellow the tartness of the vinaigrette. I chopped everything except the lettuce into about ¼-inch cubes, which made them easy to scoop up with a fork. There’s just enough lettuce to get maybe one small piece with each forkful of chopped vegetables.

Nothing makes me feel healthier than eating a big bowl of salad for dinner. And that makes me look forward to dessert that much more.

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Chopped Salad (adapted slightly from Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything Vegetarian)

Serves 4

Vinaigrette:
2 tablespoons vinegar – good choices include balsamic, sherry, red wine, white wine
¼ teaspoon salt
pinch black pepper
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 medium carrots, peeled
4 stalks celery stalks, preferably from the heart, washed
1 medium red onion
1 medium red bell pepper, washed
1 regular-sized cucumber or 2 english cucumbers, washed
1 avocado, halved, seed removed, flesh scooped from skin
2 hardboiled eggs, peeled
2 romaine hearts, washed and dried

1. For the vinaigrette: Combine all ingredients in a jar with a tightfitting lid and shake until combined.

2. For the salad: Chop all ingredients except romaine into ⅛- to ¼-inch cubes and place in large bowl. Cut romaine into approximately 1-inch pieces and add to bowl.

3. Add vinaigrette to salad ingredients and mix thoroughly. Serve.

Comments

  1. Mary Ellen says:

    These pictures are so beautiful that I want to reach through my screen and eat that salad!

  2. VeggieGirl says:

    HAHA!! Kids say the darndest things ;-)

    Wonderful-looking salad!!

  3. Joelen says:

    You make salads looks so refreshing and delicious! Chopped salad by far is my favorite – especially with a bit of bacon and blue cheese. Yum!

  4. bensbaby116 says:

    I agree…salads are definitely underrated. Your vinaigrette looks delicious!

  5. Dave says:

    Since I love veggies I definitely like salads. But I agree with Bridget that most salads that are served in restaurants are nasty. No wonder people think that they don’t like salads. This salad was excellent.

  6. pinkstripes says:

    I love your pictures! I love making salads. YUM!

  7. bunnies4buddha says:

    mmmmmmm……leaves – I love salad :)

  8. Kristen says:

    Kids say the darndest things, don’t they?
    I love, love, love chopped salads. This looks fantastic!

  9. Looks delicious! Lovely pictures!

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