Make a Dinner Salad Without a Recipe

Warm Mizuna, Arugula,& Spinach with Bacon

It’s easy to let salad become an afterthought at dinner. Lettuce, cucumber, maybe tomato or onion and make everyone eat a bite or two, right? Wrong! Salads can be the main event at dinner and it’s easy to make salads so good and filling that everyone will be scraping the plate for more. Dinner salads are also great to prepare if you have a gluten free or paleo guest, hold the cheese or leave it on the side. Start with a bed of fresh lettuce, on our farm we grow green leaf, red leaf, delicate boston, and romaine. You can also branch out and try spinach, arugula, mizuna, bok choy, or a combination of greens. They are all the perfect foil for salad. Wash and dry the greens in a salad spinner. Once your lettuce is ready, check out your CSA share box for ideas. Lots of our vegetables are great raw, or roasted vegetables on top of a salad are also a great touch. Try grilling vegetables in the summer.

Raw Vegetables

  • Grated Carrots or Beets
  • Tomatoes, sliced or diced
  • Cucumbers, sliced or diced
  • Onions or Scallions
  • Broccoli, chopped into small pieces
  • Bell Peppers
  • Chop into matchsticks or grate: Kohlrabi, Turnips, Radishes, Watermelon Radishes, Daikon Radishes

Grilled Vegetables

  • Eggplant
  • Summer Squash
  • Hakurei Turnips
  • Bell Peppers

Roasted Vegetables

  • Parsnip
  • Carrot
  • Beet
  • Turnip
  • Winter Squash
  • Celeriac
  • Potatoes


 

Once you have your vegetables picked out, there are tons of additions you can make. I love cheese, nuts, and dried fruit. You can also try fresh fruits, avocado, and chopped fresh herbs.  Lightly toast nuts or seeds on the stove, it brings out their flavor and compliments cheeses nicely. Make your salad even more filling with proteins.

Kale Pesto by Early Morning Farm CSA

Cheeses

  • Crumbled goat, feta, or blue
  • Diced sharp cheddar or swiss
  • Grated parmesan, gruyere, or pecorino

Nuts and Seeds

(Lightly toasted or raw)

  • Seeds: pumpkin, sunflower
  • Nuts: walnut, pecan, almonds, pine, pistachio, macadamia

Proteins

  • Grilled: chicken, shrimp, salmon, tofu, tempeh
  • Thinly sliced steak
  • Smoked Turkey
  • Avocado
  • Cooked or Canned Beans: Black Beans, Chickpeas, White beans, Lima Beans
  • Thawed and Shelled Edamame
  • Hardboiled Eggs

Herbs

  • From your CSA Share: Parsley, Basil, Cilantro, Dill
  • Other Ideas: Rosemary, Thyme, Sage


 

Balsamic Dressing

When it comes to the dressing, take a few minutes to whip up your own. A very simple dressing can come together with one quarter cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons vinegar, 1 teaspoon of dijon mustard, and a dash of salt and pepper. Check out our tutorial for more ideas. Make salad the main dish at your next party or try lettuce wraps!


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