Looking for a light and delicious spring lunch? Salads are perfect at this time of year especially in Michigan where lettuces are abundant right now. Red or green leaf, Romaine or buttery lettuce like Bibb all make great salad options. I suggest you avoid iceberg lettuce as it lacks not only flavor, but also nutrients. There are so many other great choices and then you can have fun adding other toppings of your choice like homemade croutons, beans or chickpeas, raw or toasted pumpkin, hemp or sunflower seeds, raw nuts, chopped avocado, cut up peppers add some great color or any other chopped vegetables you prefer. Check out my previous post on Fun Toppers for Spring Salads for more creative ideas!
One of the most important parts of any salad is the salad dressing! Don’t skimp on quality for your dressing. You want healthy fats in your dressing such as extra-virgin olive oil, cold-pressed flax oil, coconut oil (or even coconut milk) adds great flavor to a dressing. Be sure to avoid store bought dressing which often contain rancid vegetable oils, trans fats or additives.
Follow these simple steps to make delicious dressing:
Start with a ratio of 2 or 3 parts oil/creamy ingredient to 1 part acidic ingredient (vinegar or lemon juice are my favorites), then add a dab of your emulsifying ingredient (if using something like egg yolk or Dijon mustard) and whisk until smooth. Add a pinch of sea salt, freshly ground pepper, and any “fun” extras to taste.
Try this all purpose simple dressing:
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic or red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons Italian seasonings or a blend of dried basil, oregano, and thyme
To make the dressing, whisk the oil, vinegar, and mustard together in a small bowl, then whisk in the herbs.
Homemade dressing can be refrigerated for a week.