Sunday, February 27, 2011

A Bag Of Greens

No matter what the season, for me, it seems like a salad is always what sounds good for lunch. The crunchy greens with the fresh, raw veggies and then whatever else I find in the fridge to throw in, makes a meal that I always think is "the best salad yet!

And that is always different, because what's in the fridge is always changing on this adventure of creative cooking!  One thing that I do keep as a constant though, is the use of a lot of interesting deep green lettuces and herbs as a base. 

Now if I'm making a salad almost every single day for lunch, not to mention sometimes as a side dish at dinner, I would end up spending the time over and over getting ALL of those separate items out, washing the lettuces, herbs....chopping them, putting them all back in their containers or bags... But why would I when I can expedite the whole process in one easy step?? Of course there is a simple solution for all this!!  

An extra large zip bag of ready washed, already chopped, wonderfully assorted seasonal greens... ready to go!  I love my big bag of greens!!!  I just take it out, shake some into my bowl and start adding to it--that becomes my creation of the day  :)

And what do I include in my big bag of greens? I'm glad you asked. A variety of lettuces like arugula (a.k.a. rocket ) that adds a peppery flavor, butter lettuce with its more mellow taste and texture, mache (also called lamb's lettuce) a sweet, nutty flavor, mesclun (which means "mixed") traditionally composed of several varieties, mizuna which is an Asian type of mustard greens, radicchio with its own peppery, slightly bitter flavor, romaine... and the list goes on. To all that I add cabbages (green, red, Asian...), bok choy, spinach, kale, celery, (which are really vegetables), then my favorite--herbs...fresh parsley, cilantro, mint, dill, thyme... Of course I don't include all of these in every bag.

Just what ever looked particularly fresh and yummy at the market. I only chop up what I know can be used in the next 4-5 days, so it's always fresh.  I also put a clean piece of paper towel that has been dampened with water and lemon juice in the bag to help keep everything fresh and wholesome.

All of that ends up being a lot!  A lot of savings (by not buying the pre-washed/pre-packaged versions--this is just a home-made version of the prepared lettuce mixes!), a lot of vitamins, minerals, fiber and fresh, raw nutrition...all in a big bag of greens!  I hope this idea is helpful to you  :)

P.S. My salad in the picture has 20 ingredients. Can you spot them all?

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About Delightfully Free: Delightfully Free is a gluten-free, dairy-free and refined sugar-free cookbook of 141 recipes. It includes delicious resources for autism, Celiac disease, diabetes, lactose intolerance, obesity and just plain healthy living. It contains 114 color photographs, 114 vegetarian or vegetarian compatible recipes, and 103 vegan or vegan compatible recipes.