What's your "go-to" salad?
March 31, 2013 6:04 AM   Subscribe

Inspired by this post, I'm working on my own "go-to" salad that I'll always be able to make. The criteria are: "fresh ingredients you can get in most stores, which you will never tire of, and can eat twice a week for the rest of your life." Do you have a "go-to" salad or something similar? - I'm looking for inspiration here so the more unusual/personal the better!
posted by Another Fine Product From The Nonsense Factory to Food & Drink (72 answers total) 328 users marked this as a favorite
Mixed greens, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, scallions, avocado, black olives, and craisens.
posted by carmicha at 6:07 AM on March 31, 2013

I like strawberries, mixed greens, cucumbers and carrots as a base, and switch it up for a little diversity depending on what's on sale. Steamed asparagus, cherry tomatoes, wilted kale, whatever.
posted by Blisterlips at 6:11 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Spinach, mushrooms, boiled egg, strawberries, grapes, walnuts, craisins, with poppy-seed dressing.
posted by frobozz at 6:15 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Arugula, shaved fennel, and fresh parmesan (well, the kind in the tub or bag), dressed in lemon juice, olive oil, and salt/pepper.
posted by unknowncommand at 6:16 AM on March 31, 2013 [7 favorites]

Mixed greens, roasted diced beets, avocado, a bit of spring/green onion, steamed (cooled) rice, corn and fresh, soft goat cheese. Serve with homemade balsamic vinaigrette: good olive oil, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard and a bit o' honey. Yum.
posted by hapax_legomenon at 6:18 AM on March 31, 2013 [2 favorites]

"Spring greens" lettuce mix (sometimes romaine if I'm eating with my parents), carrots, red bell pepper, Parmesan, balsamic dressing (home made is best.)
I do eat this is some form at least twice a week. It's not exciting but it complements most dishes I eat nicely.
posted by missriss89 at 6:18 AM on March 31, 2013

I make this salad more than any other. http://orangette.blogspot.com/2006/06/salad-days.html

It is delicious and always gets lots of compliments when I make it for get-togethers. Most of the time I substitute spring mix for the romaine because I love spring mix.
posted by Fairchild at 6:25 AM on March 31, 2013 [10 favorites]

For me, a salad is a winner if it combines greens with three components: juicy, crunchy, and creamy.

Spinach+tomatoes+sunflower seeds+feta.
Mixed greens+mandarins+almonds+tzatziki.
Kale+grapes+pine nuts+parm
Romaine+seeded cukes+mango/black bean salsa (this one is great as a chopped salad, the beans add the creamy element)

All benefit from additions of whatever you have on hand (especially red onions), but any combo of those elements always feels complete to me.
posted by headnsouth at 6:29 AM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

Mine are seasonal, so there is more than one, summer is the family favorite: lettuce, green peas, blueberries, dressed with cream, lemon, salt, pepper.
Right now we have tomatoes, cucumber, mint, all finely chopped, dressed with olive oil, lemon, salt, pepper.
Late summer/ autumn: lightly braised cabbage, chunks of tomatoes, onion (sometimes raw, sometimes braised with the cabbage), dressing either with garlic, cumin, olive Oil and lemon, or a mustard vinaigrette.
Winter: endivie and oranges (or grapefruit), dressed with vinaigrette. Very conservative all of them, I know. I'm picky
posted by mumimor at 6:34 AM on March 31, 2013 [4 favorites]

Leaves (or just lettuce) dressed with pesto thinned down with extra olive oil, plus Parmesan shavings and roasted pine nuts (if you can't get roasted, just heat them in dry pan till they brown slightly).

Yes, it's very simple, but I never tire of it.
posted by Segundus at 6:38 AM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

Greens, crushed walnuts, dried cranberries, crumbled goat cheese, and a splash of citrus champagne vinegar.
posted by carsonb at 6:43 AM on March 31, 2013 [4 favorites]

Mixed greens, red or yellow bell pepper, cucumber, corn (small amount), sliced heart of palm, and either diced ham or imitation crab bits. Toss with homemade vinaigrette (red wine vinegar and olive oil in a 1:2 ratio, a dash of salt and pepper, and a spoonful of whole grain mustard).

I've been making this for lunch for the past several months and have not tired of it one bit.
posted by redfishbluefish at 6:48 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Sliced cucumber and onion, chopped tomato, crumbled feta cheese.

It works best if you slice the cucumber and onion maybe fifteen minutes ahead of time, toss them with a bit of salt, and let them sit in a colander to drain.

It really doesn't need dressing, especially if you do the salt-and-drain thing. But a splash of vinegar wouldn't be out of line if you're into that.
posted by Now there are two. There are two _______. at 7:00 AM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

Mine is a simpler variant of what frobozz listed above: red leaf lettuce, chopped hard boiled egg, pecans or almonds, dried cranberries or cherries, homemade balsamic vinaigrette with herbs of your choice. It's also good if you cook the egg such that the yolk stays slightly runny; think of the yolk there as part of your dressing.

I had somebody interrupt my lunch in the school cafeteria to ask me about this salad because it looked so good.
posted by ActionPopulated at 7:06 AM on March 31, 2013 [2 favorites]

Greens (whatever's freshest in the store, but if there is time to prep and wash, a head of lettuce is usually in better shape than the more convenient plastic box lettuce) with very thinly sliced raw beet, carrot ribbons, cucumber, walnuts, thinly sliced red onion, feta or goat.
Dressing: Sesame oil, fresh orange juice, white balsamic.
This is so, so good.
posted by third rail at 7:15 AM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

1/2 head Butter lettuce
1 small avocado, peeled and chopped
1 small tomato, chopped
2 Tbs. toasted pine nuts
2 Tbs. alfalfa sprouts
1/4 cup minced red onion
1 Tbs. minced cilantro

1 Tbs. white wine vinegar
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tsp. honey
1 clove garlic, crushed
3 Tbs. olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

(Got it from the Intercourses cookbook, which also includes a 2 Tbs of shredded mozzarella in it)
posted by jaguar at 7:30 AM on March 31, 2013

Red lettuce - or mixed spring greens - with chopped diced tomato (seeds removed), chopped orange bell pepper, green onions, goat cheese.

Before I assemble the salad I marinate a drained can of large butter beans in dressing made with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, a squirt of lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Put the beans in a bowl and fill with dressing to just cover them.

When the salad is ready, top with the marinated beans and dressing.
posted by k8lin at 7:31 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Any salad that incorporates crisp (lettuces, carrots, radishes, celery), sharp (radishes), crunchy (walnuts, pecans, croutons), chewy (dried fruits), soft (cheeses) and sweet (fruits) works for me.
posted by xingcat at 7:32 AM on March 31, 2013

This broccoli salad from Smitten Kitchen is hands-down incredible - the buttermilk dressing works so well against the sweetness of the dried cranberries.
posted by ukdanae at 7:33 AM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

Thai salad:

Sliced cucumber, red onion (can add cabbage slaw and/or sliced carrots);
chopped cilantro, thai chili (remove seeds and veins); top with chopped roasted peanuts.
Dressing is equal parts of water, white vinegar, sugar; with sufficient salt.
Should be spicy enough to make your head sweat.
posted by the Real Dan at 7:34 AM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

Lettuce + hot chicken or fish + olives + capers + this tahini dressing from the Moosewood Cookbook. Hardboiled eggs if I have them.
posted by punchtothehead at 7:34 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Israeli salad is super easy and yummy:

Diced cucumbers
Diced tomatoes (or halved grape tomatoes)
add chopped red onion and / or fresh dill and/or chopped yellow peppers (optional)

dressing: lemon juice, vinegar (we like rice vinegar) and a drop of olive oil, plus salt and pepper
posted by Mchelly at 7:49 AM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

Romaine, sliced hard-boiled eggs, red onion, plentiful pickled jalepenos, cucumber, maybe shredded cheese or beets, bac-os. Red wine vinegar, balasamic vinegar, a quick lashing of olive oil. This is my go-to salad bar salad--it somehow has enough variety to eat many days a week.
posted by c'mon sea legs at 8:20 AM on March 31, 2013

My standard ingredients are greens (usually romaine), kalamata olives, roasted red peppers, feta cheese, and olive oil as dressing. I eat variations of this about 4x a week.

Cucumbers, sliced tomatoes, a bit of raw red onion are nice extras while still keeping it light.

Sliced boiled eggs on top, or leftover meat of whatever sort, makes it a meal.
posted by mattu at 8:23 AM on March 31, 2013 [2 favorites]

Diced multi-colour bell peppers, sliced red onion, halved cherry tomatoes, halved green olives that have been marinated with garlic, chopped feta, balsamic vinegar, good olive oil. Could definitely eat that twice a day forever.
posted by neushoorn at 8:24 AM on March 31, 2013

I do a very basic variation on greek salad -- cherry tomatoes, cucumber, diced feta with a splash of olive oil and a larger splash of white wine vinegar, along with a touch of sugar, and some oregano, salt and pepper (or dried italian seasoning, if I don't have oregano).

This is not particularly unusual, but it is a salad I eat multiple times per week.
posted by jacquilynne at 8:37 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Lettuce greens, a tomato, a hardboiled egg, an avocado, defrosted Nordic shrimp (teensy), some random seeds, Saarionen Caesar dressing, some shaved Valio Mustaleima

On an expansive day, a tiny can of corn kernels, one of garbanzo beans
posted by infini at 8:38 AM on March 31, 2013

Chopped carrots/bell peppers/celery/cucumber + crumbled feta cheese + some sort of chopped nut or seed(go-to is sunflower) + olive oil/lemon juice dressing, occasionally with chopped herbs

If I have them, olives and/or garbanzos or cannelini beans
posted by fromageball at 8:52 AM on March 31, 2013

Romaine, cucumber, grape tomatoes, chopped carrots, some tuna or chic peas and balsamic vinegrette. And croutons! I can eat this every day.
posted by MeatheadBrokeMyChair at 9:30 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Baby spinach, strawberries, feta, candied pecans, balsamic vinegar, olive oil.
posted by ootandaboot at 9:47 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Raw kale salad

1 bunch of kale
4 Tbsp lemon or lime juice
3 Tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, pressed
pinch red pepper flakes
pinch + handful really good parmesan
salt and pepper

Rip or cut kale into little pieces. Whisk everything but the handful of parmesan together and pour over the kale. You'll have to really toss it for a while to get the dressing to coat all the leaves evenly, but it will. Toss the handful of parmesan in.

I will happily eat this salad every day. And it keeps in the fridge without getting slimy because kale is sturdy. In fact, it's better after sitting for a while.
posted by (Over) Thinking at 9:49 AM on March 31, 2013 [11 favorites]

Spring mix greens + cubes of whatever cheese I have available (usually Havarti) + either cucumber, chopped sweet pea pods, or avocado + grilled chicken + almond slices + light ranch dressing. Add a boiled egg occasionally.

I eat a variation of this for dinner about two times a week and I've yet to get tired of it.
posted by gemmy at 9:53 AM on March 31, 2013

Mixed greens, fresh mozzerella, toasted pumpkin seeds with minced garlic, a few slices of smoked salmon and a hardboiled egg + homemade balsamic dressing.

I know, there is too much here.
posted by msamye at 10:37 AM on March 31, 2013

This is the salad that does not sound amazing but for whatever reason it is really amazing and stupidly simple.

4 carrots (or double seems to work fine too)
1/3 C. salted peanuts
2 T red wine vinegar
2 T peanut oil
few drops of sesame oil

Cut, mix, pow.

When I'm just making a leafy something, I usually go with baby spinach, dried cranberries, sunflower hearts, crumbled gorgonzola cheese, snow peas and home made croutons. Simple oil & vinegar dressing with some mustard/maple. Optional: carrots, green peppers, chicken breast, candied walnuts, roast beets, roasted butternut.
posted by jessamyn at 10:43 AM on March 31, 2013 [7 favorites]

My husband's go-to salad: Spring mix with shredded carrot, thin-sliced Italian salami, sliced red bell peppers, croutons, and Trader Joe's Tuscan Italian dressing.

My go-to lunch salad: Spring mix and spinach with shredded carrot, chopped oven-baked ham, slices of hard-boiled egg, green olives, dried cranberries, and honey-mustard dressing.
posted by limeonaire at 10:48 AM on March 31, 2013

This is called "Favorite Salad" in my house - mixed field greens, slivers of red onions, mandarin orange wedges (jarred or from a tub), walnuts, blue cheese, and raspberry vinaigrette.
posted by ersatzkat at 10:54 AM on March 31, 2013

I don't have one particular salad to recommend, but this list has provided lots of inspiration over the past few years:

"101 Simple Salads for the Season" from the NYT Minimalist blog.
posted by banwa at 11:24 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Cook's Illustrated's chopped salads, with a backbone of romaine hearts and cucumber (there were 3 or 4 slight variations--apple for pear, fennel for bell pepper, tarragon sometimes, pepitas sometimes, etc.--as seasons go), are delicious. So's their cucumber salad, which involves a vinegar dressing you cook down and concentrate on the stove first and steps to prevent the cucumber from getting soggy. It's best in summer but my mom's Asian cucumber salad is easy peasy and I never get sick of the taste of it personally. Also in general terms, really can't argue with above shoutouts to Orangette; she was my seasonal salad gateway (that Red Seasonal Salad with cooked chicken on her site, from Nigella, is delicious in fall/winter BTW).
posted by ifjuly at 11:35 AM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

Mixed greens. cherry tomatoes, avocado, soft goats cheese, walnuts, mixed seeds. Grated carrot optional. Dressing is just olive oil and balsamic mixed with a tiny drop of maple syrup (that's when the magic happens).
posted by hazyjane at 11:52 AM on March 31, 2013

Greek salads, usually: really good feta cheese (like, the kind you get from a Greek/Mediterranean market; obviously it depends on what's near you but it usually costs about the same as the packaged stuff and is 100x better), chicken seared with garlic and sumac, olives, maybe sun-dried tomatoes, romaine, lemon juice and olive oil, a bit more sumac sprinkled on top.

Summer specifically: pan-seared shrimp, walnuts, chopped pears, blue cheese, butter lettuce, vinaigrette.

This Salon article is also really good for ideas.
posted by dekathelon at 12:41 PM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

I never get sick of: some type of lettuce (usually romaine), carrot, red onions, feta cheese, craisins, and croutons/pita chips/sunflower seeds. If I'm trying to use up something in my fridge, I might throw in cucumber, bell peppers, and/or cherry tomatoes, but the base is always the same and always soooooo good, usually with some kind of vinaigrette.
posted by weelittlemaggie at 1:39 PM on March 31, 2013

Cucumbers, tomatoes, onion, and canned chickpeas, mixed with Newman's Own vinaigrette. Add crumbled feta and/or brown rice according to ambition level.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 1:43 PM on March 31, 2013

Response by poster: wow, i'm kind of intimidated about how many favourites this post has got, I guess this is something alot of people would like to do! - some of these sound amazing (i'll maybe give best answers out when i've made a few of them) - if I am to take a single lesson from them I think its that a good dressing is key! thanks all and keep them coming!
posted by Another Fine Product From The Nonsense Factory at 2:11 PM on March 31, 2013

This is such a inspirational thread because there are so many great ideas. I can't wait to try them out. Thanks for your question.
Since I was focused on the salads we eat several times a week, I forgot our all time favorite salad. We eat it all year round and it has to be on the table if we have guests, or there will be complaints. But I've put a limit on it, because it needs careful (not weekday) preparation.

A head of cauliflower carefully taken into tiny separate flowers
One or two shallots, cut into 2 mm squares
(maybe a little garlic, pressed or shredded)
1/2 cup of creme fraiche or Greek/Turkish yogurt
1/2 cup of mayonnaise
a topped teaspoon of mustard
salt and pepper to taste

All of the above is mixed in a bowl and set to cool for minimum 1 hour. Cover with a plate or film.

Then shortly before serving, it is removed to a nicer bowl, and decorated with halved small tomatoes, lumpfish "caviar", and maybe halved runny eggs.

This is the basic recipe. I variate it a lot depending on what is available, but no one seems to mind. As long as it is on the table. However, the time-consuming fine-cutting of both cauliflower and shallots is essential, and though one can greatly vary the ratios of mayo to dairy, both have to be present.
posted by mumimor at 3:08 PM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

Nicoise. Boiled new potatoes, blanched green beans, home made vinaigrette, lots of parsley, chervil, chives, and tarragon, olives, cherry tomatoes, red onion, and really whatever.

I think for the most part greens as the main thing in a salad is bullshit. Especially lettuce.
posted by cmoj at 3:34 PM on March 31, 2013 [3 favorites]

This isn't precisely what you're asking for (it's intensely tasty and rich enough I wouldn't make it every week by any means...it's more unusual and special than that), but it is to die for good (despite seeming weird I know!...think of it as a weeknight cheater's riff on mole) and at least where I am relies on only pantry staples (the canned chipotles in adobo, almonds, and intense chocolate) and produce that's easy enough to procure most of the time (lettuce leaves, grape tomatoes, avocado, lime), along with cooked seafood which isn't hard to phone in via cooked shrimp or whatnot (the dressing's so good it doesn't matter).

Avocado Seafood Salad with Bittersweet Chipotle Dressing
From The Splendid Table.

Bittersweet Chipotle Dressing:
1 oz bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 whole canned chipotle chile in adobo and about 2 teaspoons of its sauce
1/2 cup sweet-tasting grape tomatoes
2 heaping Tablespoons whole salted almonds
2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons water, or as needed

2 ripe Hass avocados, cut into 1-inch chunks
8 to 9 oz cooked seafood (shrimp, scallops, crab, salmon, tilapia, or any firm fish), cut into 1-inch chunks
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 small leaves Bibb lettuce
1 large lime, cut in half, for garnish

To make the dressing, have the food processor running as you drop in the chocolate to chop it finely. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add chipotle, its sauce, and the tomatoes, almonds, and vinegar, processing nearly to a puree. Blend in mayonnaise and enough water to make dressing thick as heavy cream. Use dressing right away or let mellow in refrigerator for up to 4 days.

To finish the salad, in a medium bowl gently combine avocado and seafood with half the dressing. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place a lettuce leaf in each of four wine or cocktail glasses or a shallow salad bowl and pile in salad. Top with spoonfuls of extra dressing and squeeze fresh lime juice over each cocktail just before serving.
posted by ifjuly at 4:35 PM on March 31, 2013

Cucumber, tomato, black beans or chickpeas, sometimes arugula or spring greens or lettuce, avocado and mango if you can find ripe ones, some nuts, a can of tuna if you feel like it. Dressing is usually olive oil with balsamic vinegar or yuzu juice or a lime or lemon squeezed in. Sometimes I just go for bottled dressing to be lazy - usually yogurt bleu cheese dressing. Kosher salt because the coarseness gives it some pop. And don't forget the freshly ground black pepper.
posted by fullerenedream at 5:05 PM on March 31, 2013

Mixed greens, toasted pine nuts, Boursin cheese, and homemade balsamic vinaigrette. Delicious as is, or you can add just about anything.
posted by arcticwoman at 5:05 PM on March 31, 2013

Oh! Also a red onion or some green onions are great in my salad.
posted by fullerenedream at 5:07 PM on March 31, 2013

Spinach, mizuna (a Japanese leafy green, sort of mustardy), cucumbers, red bell peppers, thinly sliced radishes, and topped with some sort of protein, usually baked chicken breasts, though sometimes chopped bits of bacon or smoked salmon.
posted by Ghidorah at 6:07 PM on March 31, 2013

Fattoush, which we might eat two or three times a week in the summer, especially when tomatoes are good:

1 green bell pepper
2 tomatoes
a cucumber
a handful of parsley
half an onion (or more if you like)

Chop all that up to whatever size makes you happy, and mix it together.


1/4 c. olive oil
1/4 c. lemon juice
1 tsp. sumac (you can use a bit of lemon zest if you don't have it, but it's worth it to get sumac from Penzey's--it's great on fried eggs, too)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. garlic

Put the dressing on the veggies and mix it all up. Let it sit together while you toast a pita or two, on which you have smeared a bit of olive oil and, if you have it, sprinkled some zaatar. When the pita is toasted, crumble it into the salad. Mix it all up and eat it.

Another favorite, though it's less healthy:

a few strips of bacon
a red onion
some pine nuts (or any other nuts that sound good with this)
olive oil
balsamic vinegar

Fry the bacon, drain it on a paper towel, add a little oil to the same pan, chop the onion up pretty coarsely and sweat it a little it in that pan (you just want it soft, not browned). Add the pine nuts, stir them around a bit, and then splash a little balsamic vinegar in the pan. Cut up the bacon into pieces and add it back to the pan, then pour that whole mess over the arugula. This is the very best way to eat arugula.

I have also eaten variations of this salad for days on end. The beets are key, for me; they make it interesting.

I love salads, and I think the key to eating them regularly is to keep a few specific things that really make the salad on hand, but to be flexible with all else.
posted by hought20 at 6:16 PM on March 31, 2013 [5 favorites]

Okay, not healthy but I would totally eat this once a week as long as I was balancing it out with other stuff: Cobb salad. Butter/Bibb/Boston lettuce, bacon (pre-cooked works fine), sliced hard boiled egg, blue cheese crumbles, avocado, golden or red beets if you have them left over from something else, and whatever your favorite tomatoes are. I just sprinkle a couple of tablespoons of apple cider vinegar over the whole thing.
posted by belau at 8:13 PM on March 31, 2013 [1 favorite]

som tam:

shredded cucumber (green papaya is traditional, but less available)
cherry tomatoes, halved or a diced tomato
fresh green beans cut into 1-inch pieces
fish sauce (i use soy and apple cider vinegar as my partner doesn't eat fish)
lime (or lemon juice)

dried shrimp
palm sugar

put papaya/cucumber/beans/tomato aside and give all the other ingredients a good smashing in a mortar and pestle. Add to the main ingredients and give it a brutal mixing.
give all the ingredient smash the ingredients up with a pestle
posted by compound eye at 12:05 AM on April 1, 2013 [6 favorites]

The one I make all the time for me to eat, but would be embarrassed to offer to guests is kind of a healthy/poor man's waldorf:

1 apple (I like granny smiths for this) for the sweet/tart taste
a few sticks of celery for the crunchy
a handful of nuts (or sunflower seeds, or pumpkin seeds) for the chewy
a scoop of cottage cheese mixed with an equal scoop of greek yoghurt for the creamy

Dice the apple and celery and mix in with everything else into a big creamy cheesy pile. It has a great combination of flavours (salty and tart and nutty and sweet) and textures (creamy and chewy and crunchy). And it's full of protein from the cottage cheese and yoghurt.

The one I make to take places is a lentil salad:

Some cooked lentils of any variety that stays firm (i.e. not red lentils)
One finely chopped chili
Finely grated carrots of an equal volume to the lentils
Grated apple if you will be serving it soon so it won't go brown.
Lots of coriander ("cilantro" to Americans)

Mix all that together and stir through the following dressing:
Lime juice. Lots of. Must be fresh, not that bottled crap.
Fish sauce (about 1 tsp per two limes used)
Sesame oil (about 1 tsp per lime used)
A pinch of sugar to taste (less if you use an apple in the salad)

This salad doesn't look very exciting but it tastes incredible. People always take one polite spoonful for the corner of their plate, taste it, and then come back to pile it on.
posted by lollusc at 1:52 AM on April 1, 2013 [11 favorites]

I like a salad with lettuce, tomatoes, cukes, etc., and tuna salad -- but the key addition is some yellow/banana peppers (they call them "hot peppers" in my local deli, but they're not hot at all, just tart). that really ramps up the variety of wowza tastes I get between bites while I'm eating all that healthy goodness.
posted by acm at 7:12 AM on April 1, 2013

Romaine lettuce, cucumber, tomato, mushroom, green onion, mandarin orange slices (from a can), raisins, walnuts, feta cheese, sunflower seeds. With olive oil and salt, or with a dressing made with lemon juice, olive oil, dijon mustard and garlic. Sprinkle with dill and pepper
posted by winterportage at 7:13 AM on April 1, 2013

1905 Salad from the Columbia Restaurant is my favorite salad. I could eat it 3 times a week easy.

I don;t like green olives but I do add a teaspoon olive brine to the dressing - it makes a difference and I usually have olive eating dining companions. This is excellent with gazpacho and/or bread. I have never tried subbing extra cheese or grilled tofu for the meat but it might work for vegetarians.
posted by pointystick at 7:58 AM on April 1, 2013 [2 favorites]

I could eat this every day for the rest of my life:

spinich or kale
sliced strawberries
toasted almost slices
poppyseed dressing
posted by kitcat at 8:27 AM on April 1, 2013

Romaine, sliced mushrooms, red bell pepper, grape tomatoes, kalamata olives, feta, craisens, chopped walnuts, sunflower seeds. Olive oil and red wine vinegar with a tablespoon of whole grain mustard.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 9:29 AM on April 1, 2013

these are reminding me of a few more i really like.

Deborah Madison's Apple Celery Cheese Salad, Orangette's Warm Lentil Salad (make sure to use French Le Puy lentils, those small dark green ones), Roasted Cauliflower Caprese Salad (insanely good), and Orangette's Thai Mango Ribbon Macadamia Salad.
posted by ifjuly at 12:46 PM on April 1, 2013 [2 favorites]

A beloved, healthy, hearty salad:

Several cups of shredded kale (I buy big bags, pre-shredded, for convenience)
1 very soft avocado
Couple of cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 cup cooked chickpeas (canned works fine)

Salt, oregano, cumin, cayenne, coriander to taste

Mash the avocado up on your cutting board with the garlic you've just minced and the spices. Then plop it into a bowl with the kale and mush it all around until the kale is well coated. Add the chickpeas. Eat.
posted by bookish at 4:51 PM on April 1, 2013 [1 favorite]

1/4 cup quinoa, cooked ahead of time
1/2 small zucchini, diced
2 - 3 small pieces broccoli
2 - 3 pieces cauliflower, chopped
1 silverbeet leaf, chopped
Handful sunflower seeds
1/4 cup meaty/extra protein (leftover steak, chicken, tin of tuna, boiled egg)
Lemon wedge
Coconut oil

(Extras! Maybe some red capsicum or carrot if I have it.)

Steam the veggies for 60secs, throw in the quinoa and meat and zap for 30 secs in microwave.

Dress with seeds, fresh lemon and coconut oil.

My lunch most days. Yummo.

You could do this without the quinoa and you don't even need to steam those veggies. Raw is also good!
posted by latch24 at 9:10 PM on April 1, 2013

I just discovered mine:

arugula/spinach leaves
grated carrot
dried cranberries
pecans (candied or plain)
julienned apple

2 tsp olive oil
1 tsp maple syrup
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
salt/pepper to taste

we've had it about 6 times in the last two weeks and are not sick of it yet.
posted by piyushnz at 1:09 PM on April 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

Romaine lettuce
Topped with:
Mandarin oranges
Red Grapes
Shredded low moisture mozzarella
Chopped chicken breast
Crunchy Asian noodle topping (as one would find in a salad bar)
A whole black olive or two (as otherwise, a salad would be incomplete)
Dress with balsamic vinaigrette.

Maybe a sliced water chestnut or two would pair well, now that I think about it...
posted by slateyness at 6:58 PM on April 2, 2013

My favorite giant salad:

A bunch of fresh spinach (leaves and chopped stems) prepared as described here (the cleaning, stemming and chopping of stems parts, not the stir-frying part)

A quart of washed, hulled strawberries cut up into small bite-size pieces

A large cucumber, peeled, seeded and also chopped into small bite-size pieces

4 to 8 ounces (your preference) of creamy style cottage cheese

As much ranch dressing as makes you happy

Toss well in very large salad bowl til combined to your satisfaction. Enjoy.
posted by marsha56 at 8:19 PM on April 2, 2013 [2 favorites]

A great salat is also apple, walnuts and green salat.
posted by cometosee at 1:23 AM on April 3, 2013 [1 favorite]

Kale, baby spinach, chopped cherry or grape tomatoes, chopped red onion, chilli flakes, balsamic vinegar, olive oil. Easily the best salad that ever happened in the world.
posted by turgid dahlia 2 at 5:17 AM on April 3, 2013 [1 favorite]

Kale, cucumber, tomato, carrot, kidney beans, garbanzo beans and corn with a drizzle of oil and vinegar, salt & pepper. It's hearty and filling with lots of protein. Sometimes I top it with cottage cheese or chunks of swiss.
posted by SarahBellum at 3:10 PM on April 3, 2013

Soften (don't brown) lots of chopped garlic in olive oil. Steam broccoli. Sprinkle warm broccoli with parmesan and garlicy olive oil and let cool. Lightly toast pecans. Make salad with
Red leaf lettuce
Cooled broccoli with oil

Finish with dressing made with balsamic vinegar and more olive oil. If you can find pear or fi-infused balsamic it's even better. Truly delicious.
posted by cherrybounce at 2:28 PM on April 7, 2013

Diced spring onions, diced red and yellow peppers, grated carrot, a can of mixed beans, halved cherry tomatoes and feta cheese....mmmm
posted by drunkonthemoon at 9:21 AM on May 2, 2013

Mixed leafy greens (usually baby romaine or something). sliced carrots, persian cucumbers, chickpeas. home-toasted walnuts (maybe in a little olive oil). crumbles of chevre. red wine and olive oil dressing.

lately, topped with a few slices of pan-seared tofu slathered in zaatar.
posted by raztaj at 3:06 PM on June 20, 2013

My standard is lots baby spinach, iceberg or romaine lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, and bell peppers. Sometimes I'll add leftover rice, paste, potatoes, or beans.

Topped by modest amount of peanuts, sunflower kernels, bacon bits, and cheddar or parmesean cheese.
posted by aerotive at 1:00 PM on July 10, 2013

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