Can you give me step-by-step instructions on how to pick out salad ingredients after arriving at a supermarket or farmer's market?
I would love to come up with a creative salad plan upon inspecting the available produce at my grocery store and considering all the ingredients for best freshness or low cost. Fully examining the whole produce section before beginning, and then creating a plan for optimum results, seems a bit overwhelming. It is probably an NP-complete
problem. It's worse at a farmer's market where I have to contend with multiple stands selling the same ingredients. It would take forever to exhaustively consider all the ingredients available from every vendor before beginning to shop. As far as trying to consider which vegetables are "the freshest," it's easy to compare one vegetable against others of its own kind, but comparing carrots to peppers is like comparing apples to oranges (so to speak).
So what do I do? What sorts of things work for you?
I'd like to maybe branch out but here are the sorts of things I've liked on salad before: lettuce (romaine, green leaf), spinach, carrots, celery, bell peppers (green, red, yellow), cucumbers (English, traditional), tomatoes, avocado, parsley, onions (red, green), snap peas, green beans, cheese (goat, Parmesan, blue, feta), walnuts, olives. I usually make my own dressing.
Not interested in a mystery box community-supported agriculture plan. I asked a version of this question on Seasoned Advice earlier
where I perhaps did not explain well enough that I really want a step-by-step algorithm rather than generalities.