Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Salad: Turn Over A New Leaf



Salads: Turn Over a New Leaf

Every salad you eat is an open invitation to try new vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds.


Replace nutrient-poor iceberg lettuce with greens that pack a more healthful punch. Mix and match greens to include:

  • Romaine
  • Endive
  • Oak leaf lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Red chard
  • Arugula
  • Watercress
  • Green and red leaf lettuce
  • Radicchio


Combine your usual salad favorites with something you haven’t tried before, include:

  • Jicama: This crunchy Mexican vegetable has cream colored flesh and tastes like a sweet water chestnut. Peel and cut the flesh into sticks, half moons or shred it into your salad. It is high in vitamin C.
  • Jerusalem artichoke: Looking like a cross between a very lumpy potato and a piece of ginger, the Jerusalem artichoke has a similar texture to the jicama, but is not as sweet. Peel and cut into julienne strips or shred into salad.
  • Chayote: Also called Mexican zucchini, chayote resembles a green-fleshed pear with a crunchy texture and slightly sweet taste. Peel the thin skin and cut into chunks or sticks, or shred it over salad.
  • Daikon radish: Looking like a long white carrot, daikon is the Japanese radish. It has a sharp peppery taste and crunchy texture. Shred it over salads.
  • Fennel: Slice the bulbous bottom of this vegetable, which has a mild flavor similar to celery, and toss into salads alongside some orange slices.

Fresh Fruit

Adding fruit provides a surprising, sweet contrast with vegetables and greens. Don’t be afraid to try familiar favorites or exotic new fruits – just make sure to add them at the very last minute. Some fruits that pair particularly well with salads include:

  • Apples
  • Pears
  • Nectarines
  • Peaches
  • Berries of all kinds
  • Kiwi
  • Mango
  • Papaya
  • Starfruit
  • Pineapple
  • Orange
  • Grapefruit

Nuts and Seeds

A sprinkling of toasted walnuts or almonds are great standbys. You might want to try less familiar options like shelled pistachios, unsalted soy nuts or chopped hazelnuts in small amounts.


Source:  ACIR