21 May 2011

Plate O’Salad....

When the weather gets warmer I always dream of salads. I love to have them at least twice a week if possible. They allow you to have more than your five a day that you are supposed to have and they really are so cooling, especially on those really hot, summer days. Not that we have them often mind you here in England but one can remember! Last week it was one of those days where I had croutons to use up, sour cream that also needed to be used. So those ingredients immediately made me think of salad and blue cheese dressing.

I never was much of a dressing person. I used to only have the basic Italian at home in the US and even then I used it sparingly. But a friend of mine sent me this small cookbook which had a number of salad dressings in there. They didn’t contain any dreaded mustard (cannot stand that!) so this peaked my curiosity. J loves just about any dressing but English dressings are really strange. Very mayonnaise like and most we tried were bland or frighteningly too much vinegar. I think for the first few years here I ate my salad plain without dressing. I know what sadness!

So we tried a few of the recipes and as you could guess they have now become part of my staple of dressings that I keep handy for these quick warm days that we get. They are really so easy to make and they do keep. I think all but the blue cheese one will keep for at least 3-4 weeks in the fridge. I especially have kept the Soy Maple dressing for longer without any noticeable difference in taste from freshly made.

For me salad isn’t limited to the usual ingredients – I use whatever I have in the fridge. It all goes in and the more varied the better. I’ve grilled all manner of vegetables, steamed or stir-fried if that was what I felt like. I put in the usual items lettuce, tomato, cucumber, olives, small pasta, egg, apple, pear, grapes, etc. It’s anything you want and nothing you don’t want.

So go on – try making a dressing for yourself or your family – you might find something that really appeals to you and once you start.... Enjoy!


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