As simple as salads seem, sometimes when you make them yourself, they just don’t taste as good as restaurant salads. It’s not you, but it might be your technique. Here are some tips and tricks to perfect your healthy salad-making skills.
- Always Use Fresh, In-Season Ingredients
Produce always tastes best at the peak of freshness, which is why a quick trip to the farmer’s market could yield a great batch of salad ingredients.
- Use A Salad Spinner
Be sure to wash your greens and get them as dry as possible before starting your salad (the dressing will stick better). The paper towel method can be tedious and time-consuming, but a salad spinner is designed to effectively and efficiently dry your leaves. If you don’t have one already, you may want to consider investing in one.
- Get Creative With Ingredients
Lettuce doesn’t always have to be the base of your salad. Get creative and try quinoa or farro or even shredded carrots. In addition, you can change up your toppings. For example, you can try nuts or seeds or roasted veggies. Experiment with ingredients that you like and you just might discover your new favorite salad.
- Add More Flavor
Try adding fresh herbs into your salad base or squeeze some fresh lime or lemon juice over the top. And if you like spice, you can try fresh cracked pepper or something bolder like your favorite hot sauce. The possibilities are endless.
- Balance Textures
As with most other meals, you want to balance soft and creamy ingredients (ex. avocado, goat cheese) with something crunchy (ex. nuts, croutons). The contrasting textures often work well together.
- Consider Your Protein
Before adding your protein, think about the flavors that will complement what you already have. Rather than sticking to safe choices (shredded rotisserie chicken, unseasoned baked chicken), marinate your meat in spices/sauces that will work with your salad.
- Add Cheese Just Before Eating
If you’re adding cheese to your salad, be sure to shred or shave it just before you are about to eat. Pre-shredded cheese often dries out easier and loses flavor. By shaving or shredding your cheese just before your meal, you retain the moisture and flavor for a better tasting salad.
- Want Creamier Salad Dressing?
Sometimes your store-bought or home-made dressings can be a little on the thin side, causing it to simply slip right off your salad ingredients. When this happens, an easy way to thicken it up is to add some fat-free Greek yogurt. This will also give your dressing a creamier consistency without adding too many calories.
- Dress Wisely
While on the topics of dressings, be mindful of your dressing portions. Too much or too little dressing can really mess up a salad. It’s best to err on the lighter side since you can always add more dressing as needed, but you can’t take it away.
If you don’t want to make your salad at home, come on down to the Brick Your Neighborhood Deli! With our Mixed Greens salad, you choose the toppings and we do the work. Visit www.BrickMarketDeli.com for more information on our menu or call 909-596-5225 if you have any questions. You can also stay up-to-date by following us on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest.