RECIPE: ITALIAN CHOPPED SALAD
As part of the 'STURDY SALAD LINE', having this salad on hand means a lunch or a side salad at dinner is ready to go. It's a hit with kids and adults, and besides being delicious, this salad packs a huge nutrient and antioxidant punch.
Get it in you!
This Sturdy Salad lasts up to 5 days in the fridge. And tastes better and better...
PREP TIME: 30 min
MAKES: 8-9 cups
FOR THE SALAD BASIS
2 zucchinis (courgettes), cut into small cubes
1 large carrot, cut into small cubes
1 red onion, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, cut into small cubes
1 TASTE OF TUSCANY spice sachet
½ cup (120 ml) olive oil
2 TBSP (30 ml) white wine vinegar
1 TBSP honey (optional)
½ tsp black pepper
3/4 to 1 tsp salt (to taste)
Chopped spinach leaves
Chopped cherry tomatoes
Toasted pumpkin seeds
Salt and pepper to taste
Red bell pepper, carrot, zucchini/courgette, red onion,TASTE TRAVELS Tuscany Spice Blend. Click here to buy Spice Blend.
Spinach, tomato, toasted pumpkin seeds & parmesan cheese
MAKE THE SALAD BASIS
Mix all salad ingredients (not the serving ingredients) together in a large bowl, transfer to an airtight container and let sit in the refrigerator for at 30-60 minutes to soften and absorb the dressing.
Add your chopped spinach and tomatoes to a mixing bowl and drizzle with a bit of olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix well to just season and soften the spinach.
Remove Chopped Salad 'Basis' from the refrigerator, spoon desired amount into the bowl with the spinach & tomatoes, add parmesan cheese and toasted pumpkin seeds and mix well.
Spoon into individual serving bowls and garnish with a few extra seeds and parmesan shreds for looks.
See COOK'S NOTES below for portion guidelines.
Served with chopped spinach, tomatoes, parmesan cheese & toasted pumpkin seeds
Don't skip the cheese and pumpkin seeds! This salad is lovely on it's own, but the cheese and pumpkin seeds elevate it to something special, and add a that tiny bit of salty crunch and protien that makes it a satisfying meal on it's own.
Red onions in the US tend to be much bigger than red onions in Europe, so you might want to start with half a red onion and adjust to taste.
The chopped salad can last 5 days in the fridge, and in fact, gets better over time as the flavors intensify.
The spinach, cheese and seeds get nasty after a few hours, and tomatoes go mushy, which is why I only add them at the time of serving.
While this salad keeps for a long time, the natural juices of the vegetables will start to seep out into the salad, which is nice in terms of moisture, but it can dilute the salt-taste in the dressing. So after a few days, you'll probably want to season with a bit more salt to taste at the point of serving.
You can take the below as guidelines, but this is all a matter of taste. If I’m serving this as a side salad next to a hearty meal, then I like to go lighter on the cheese and seeds to give the meal a delicate balance. If I’m serving this as a main course lunch or dinner (yes, mostly to girls), then I like a bit more cheese and seeds to give it the feeling of a satisfying meal. I'm sure you'll come to your own 'taste' ratios in time!
If serving as a 'main dish', you can start with the following amounts per person:
1 cup (40g) chopped lettuce leaves (spinach and/or romaine, loosely packed)
1 tsp olive oil
pinch of salt
3-4 diced cherry tomatoes (25-35 g)
2-3 Tbsp (12-18 g) shredded parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp (15 g) toasted pumpkin seeds.
1 ½ cup (285 g) of the chopped salad
If serving it as a side or starter at dinner, then cut the above 'per person' recommendations in half and adjust to your taste.