With all the cucumbers coming out of the garden there was little question that salad would be on the menu for lunch.
When preparing salads I always keep a spray bottle of white wine vinegar handy to keep the cut ingredients fresh.
Also from the garden in this salad was a jalapeño and white and red radishes.
I haven’t always been a salad lover. I discovered that I like salad at precisely the same time I discovered how much I like salad dressing and that cheese is a legitimate salad ingredient (although they are more precisely salad accoutrements). These discoveries occurred precisely the first of many times I ate at Griswold’s Smorgasbord in California. Have I been precise enough?
Of course these ingredients can negate some of the benefits of eating salad, but not entirely and not necessarily always. Dressings don’t need to be oil based or unhealthy to be tasty, and, likewise, healthy dressings don’t have to be “meh.” Cheese shows up in my salads less and less often these days and isn’t even missed if the dressing is right.
The dressing for today’s salad was tasty and was made without oil (not that oil is entirely a bad thing). I had trimmed back a few of my basil plants to encourage them to branch out into bushier plants, so basil was the main ingredient in the dressing. While I was in the garden I clipped some cilantro and a few chives. These were blended together with apple cider vinegar, agave nectar, a pinch of pink salt and a pinch of Xanthan gum to emulsify. That’s it. The dressing is so flavorful I could drink the stuff.
Speaking of accoutrements and negating the benefits of eating salad… But it does make a salad pretty special.