Salads and Dressings Review – 350 Ways to Delicious, Healthy Meals Every Day (Recipes)

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Salads and Dressings, from Robert Rose presents 350 recipes of salads from the simple to the sublime, using traditional veggies to experimenting with non-traditional combinations along with seasonings, dressings, and an easy to read introduction.

Author George Geary, who is also a guest intructor at more than 200 culinary schools and institutions, begins this ode to delicious and healthy eating with an introduction explaining a few of the nuances of scrumptious and splendid seasonal creations that with the right knowledge can become the staple of a nutritious lifestyle.

Beginning with tools and equipment, most of which are found in all households, after which he begins the break-down of types and nutritional value for oils, capers, sauces, tomatoes and sugars. He does the same with Dairy products, from cheeses to buttermilks, sour creams, eggs and heavy creams.


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The introduction into produce that may marry well with any salad continues with fruits, vegetables, spices and ground herbs, chilies, seasonings, spices and extracts and salt and pepper, nuts and seeds, wines and liqueurs round out the harmonizing ingredients.

Finally we reach the types and varieties of lettuce. Geary adds a brief description of each of the greens as Lettuce is divided into four groups by farmers and growers. Varieties and packaged salads, American, European, Italian blend, Mediterranean blend, Field Greens, Spring mix and baby greens, and which the blends that compose these.

Geary would explain the best salads need a dressing, the final accessory to complete the ensemble. He provides sixty pages of recipes dividing them into Vinaigrettes, International Dressings, creamy Dressings and Low-Fat dressings.

Each of the recipes are easy to read, simple to create, add zing and zest and taste delicious. Full color photos highlight selections such as Lemon Dijon Vinaigrette, Pomegranate Vinaigrette and Orange Cinnamon Vinaigrette Dressings.


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Salad selections are also highlighted with vibrant full page photos including Grapefruit Radicchio Salad, Spinach and Avocado Salad, Fresh Vegetable Pasta Salad, Sesame Noodle Salad, Tabbouleh with Tomatoes and Dried Fruit Salad, and Pepper and Bean Salad.

Classic selections of Endive and Blue Cheese Salad, Sun Dried Tomato and Pepper Salad, Vietnamese Beef Salad, Asian Chicken Salad, Shrimp and Melon Salad, Watermelon and Feta Salad and Grape and Gorgonzola Salad.

Moving into the salads Geary separates into chapters those mixtures beginning with the Classic, Pasta, Whole Grain and Bean Salad, Green and Vegetable Salads, Meat and Poultry Salads, Fish and Seafood Salads, Fruit based salads and ends with a few simple recipes for accompaniments like croutons, honey glazed walnuts, roasted capers and the like.


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As winter settles in thoughts of escapes, getaways where blue skies, ocean breezes, and beaches reign, and those heavy winter coats and layers shielding from the bone chilling cold are a distant memory what better way to prepare then beginning with nutritious healthy eating.

Below are two favorite Salads: Crab and Arugula Salad and the French Salad Nicoise both are complete meals. Bon Appetit! 

Roasted Honey Garlic Dressing -- This dressing is perfect for garlic lovers.

Makes 3⁄4 cup (175 mL)

•             Food processor

4 oz        cream cheese, softened125 g

1⁄4 cupsour cream         60 mL

1⁄4 cupbuttermilk           60 mL

8 cloves roasted garlic (see Tip, above)   8

2 tsp      liquid honey 10 mL

1 tsp      dried onion flakes 5 mL

1⁄2 tsp  sea salt2 mL

1⁄4 tsp  hot pepper flakes 1 mL

In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, process cream cheese, sour cream, buttermilk, garlic, honey, onion flakes, salt and hot pepper flakes until smooth, about 2 minutes.


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Salad Niçoise

This simple salad is served in bistros throughout France. Serves 6

1              large head Boston lettuce             1

1 lb         green beans, cooked and cooled               500 g

11⁄2 tbsp             minced shallots22 mL

1⁄2 cup Italian Herb Vinaigrette, homemade or store-bought 125 mL       

1⁄4 tsp  sea salt1 mL

1⁄4 tsp  freshly ground black pepper        1 mL

4              Roma (plum) tomatoes, 4 cut into wedges

4              small fingerling potatoes, cooked and sliced 4     

1              can (6 oz/170 g) solid white tuna, drained 1         

6              hard-boiled eggs, halved 6           

1⁄3 cupsmall black niçoise olives              75 mL

3 tbsp   minced Italian flat-leaf parsley   45 mL

2 tbsp   drained capers  30 mL

1. Arrange lettuce leaves on a serving platter. In a large bowl, toss together beans, shallots, 2 or 3 large spoonful’s of vinaigrette, salt and pepper.

2. Baste tomatoes with a spoonful of vinaigrette. Place potatoes in the center of the platter and arrange a mound of beans at either end, with tomatoes and small mounds of tuna at strategic intervals. Ring platter with halves of hard-boiled eggs, sunny-side up. Spoon more vinaigrette over all. Scatter with olives, parsley and capers.

Crab and Arugula Salad

Creamy avocado, buttery lettuce and crab come together in a rich salad that you can serve as a complete lunch. Serves 4

1 can (10 to 12 oz/300 to 375 g) crabmeat, drained          1        

1⁄2 cupfinely chopped red bell pepper  125 mL

1⁄2 cupchopped red onion          125 mL

1⁄4 cup mayonnaise, store bought          60 mL              

2 tbsp   drained capers  30 mL

2 tbsp   chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley30 mL

1 tbsp   grated lemon zest            15 mL

2 tbsp   freshly squeezed lemon juice     30 mL

3              drops hot pepper sauce3

                Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 cups   arugula500 mL

In a large bowl, combine crabmeat, bell pepper, red onion, mayonnaise, capers, parsley, lemon zest and juice and hot pepper sauce. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Arrange arugula on a serving platter. Top with crab mixture.

 

Recipe credit: Courtesy of 350 Best Salads and Dressings by George Geary © 2010 www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with publisher permission. Available where books are sold. Image credit: Colin Erricson

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