Summer is coming soon, and after fast-food meals we have an appetite for light foods, we are looking for fresh vegetables to give us a nutritious meal. We need a lot of vitamins and nutrient foods to give us energy for a new beginning at any time of the day.
Salads are the best choice for warm days and always help us overcome the fatigue condition specific to this period.
Today we present some simple and adaptable salad ideas that you can use with imagination using vegetables, chicken, fish, dairy pasta and even fruit.
Watermelon-Feta Salad, Jicama-Mango Slaw, Spanish and Orzo Salad
1. Spicy Carrot Salad: Microwave grated carrots and minced garlic in 1/4 cup water until crisp-tender. Drain; toss with lemon juice, olive oil, salt, red pepper flakes and parsley.
2. Asian Apple Slaw: Mix rice vinegar and lime juice with salt, sugar and fish sauce. Toss with julienned jicama and apple, chopped scallions and mint.
3. Tomato-Peach Salad: Toss tomato and peach wedges with red onion slices. Drizzle with cider vinegar and olive oil; season with sugar, salt and pepper.
4. Creole Green Beans: Combine blanched thin green beans and red onion slices. Toss with Creole mustard, red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper.
5. Herb Salad: Whisk 1 part lemon juice with 3 parts olive oil, and salt and pepper. Toss with dill, basil, chives, tarragon and lettuce.
Squash and Orzo Salad
6. Squash and Orzo Salad: Sauté zucchini, yellow squash and scallions in olive oil until tender. Toss with cooked orzo, parsley, dill, goat cheese, salt and pepper.
7. Champagne Greens: Whisk 1 part champagne vinegar with 3 parts olive oil, and salt and pepper. Toss with Boston lettuce.
8. Watercress-Fruit Salad: Toss peach wedges and watermelon cubes with watercress. Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper.
9. Caesar Salad: Purée minced garlic and anchovies, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper and 1 egg yolk; with machine running, slowly add 1/4 cup olive oil. Toss with romaine; top with Parmesan and croutons.
10. Hearty Tuna Salad: Mix cannellini beans, capers, pickled mushrooms, celery and olives; stir in mustard, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Toss with cherry tomatoes and oil-packed tuna.
11. Southwestern Cobb: Purée equal parts mayo and buttermilk with hot sauce, cilantro, scallion, orange zest, garlic and salt. Drizzle over romaine, diced avocado and jicama, orange segments and crumbly sharp cheese.
12. Tomatoes with Mint: Sprinkle heirloom tomato chunks with salt, pepper and sliced shallots; set aside 5 minutes. Top with fresh mint; drizzle with olive oil and white wine vinegar.
13. Chickpea Tapas: Mix chickpeas, capers and green olives with chopped chorizo, celery, red onion, parsley and cilantro. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper; top with manchego.
14. Pasta Caprese: Mix chilled cooked fusilli, diced mozzarella, chopped tomatoes, basil, toasted pine nuts and minced garlic; season with salt and pepper.
15. Chicken-Mango Salad: Whisk 1 tablespoon each lemon juice and honey, some grated ginger and 1/4 cup olive oil; toss with shredded grilled chicken, mesclun greens and diced mango.
16. Oranges with Mozzarella: Stack mozzarella and orange slices with basil. Drizzle with olive oil; season with salt and pepper.
17. Dilled Egg Salad: Mix mayo, dijon mustard, dill, and salt and pepper. Stir in coarsely chopped hard-boiled eggs and diced dill pickles.
18. Cantaloupe Carpaccio: Slice cantaloupe extra-thin (a mandoline works best). Drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice; top with pepper and ricotta.
19. Three-Bean Salad: Boil 1/3 cup cider vinegar, 1/4 cup each sugar and vegetable oil, and salt. Pour over blanched green and wax beans, kidney beans and red onion slices; marinate 1 hour. Season with salt and pepper; top with parsley.
20. Greek Cucumber Salad: Mix red onion slices, chopped cucumber, kalamata olive halves, dill and feta. Dress with olive oil and lemon juice; season with salt and pepper.
21. Panzanella: Marinate tomato chunks in olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper for 10 minutes. Soak stale bread in water for 5 minutes; drain, then toss with the tomatoes. Add sliced red onion, celery and fresh herbs.
22. Miso-Tofu Salad: Chop 1 inch fresh ginger in a blender; purée with 3 tablespoons miso, 2 tablespoons water, 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar, some soy sauce and chili paste. Blend in 1/2 cup peanut oil. Drizzle over baby spinach and cubed tofu.
23. Crab-Salad Cups: Mix lump crabmeat with celery, tarragon and chives. Toss with mayo, sour cream, lemon juice and mustard; serve in Bibb lettuce cups.
24. Japanese Radish Salad: Top a layer of watermelon radish slices with scallions and baby greens. Whisk mirin, rice wine vinegar, soy sauce, grated ginger, salt, and sesame and vegetable oil to taste; drizzle over the salad.
25. Jicama-Mango Slaw: Toss julienned mango and jicama, red onion, radish and cilantro; add cumin, salt and cayenne. Drizzle with olive oil and lime juice.
26. Tricolor Salad: Whisk 1 part balsamic vinegar with 3 parts olive oil, and salt and pepper. Toss with arugula, escarole and radicchio.
27. Tabouli with Pine Nuts: Mix cooked bulgur, toasted pine nuts, lemon juice, scallions, olive oil, salt and pepper; add diced tomatoes, mint and parsley.
28. Cheesy Spinach Salad: Whisk 1 part red wine vinegar with 3 parts walnut oil, shallots, salt and pepper. Toss with baby spinach, goat cheese and walnuts.
29. Curried Potato Salad: Mix mayo with cider vinegar, curry powder and duck sauce. Fold in roasted sweet potatoes, celery, cilantro and scallions; season with salt and pepper.
30. Smoked-Trout Salad: Whisk 1 part cider vinegar with 3 parts olive oil, minced shallots, horseradish, dijon mustard, honey, salt and pepper. Toss with flaked smoked trout, julienned apples and beets, and arugula.
31. Yellow Trio: Cut the kernels off an ear of corn; sauté in olive oil with yellow squash slices. Toss with yellow grape tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper.
32. Egg Salad with Beans: Toss blanched green beans with sliced radishes and hard-boiled eggs. Drizzle with olive oil; season with salt and pepper.
33. Ambrosia Salad: Whisk coconut milk with grated orange zest and vanilla. Toss with sliced grapes, tangerines and apples; chill. Garnish with toasted coconut and walnuts.
34. Cornbread Caesar: Toss cubed cornbread with melted butter, salt and cayenne on a baking sheet; bake at 400 degrees, 12 to 15 minutes. Toss romaine and chopped tomato with Caesar dressing (see No. 9); top with the cornbread croutons.
35. Beet Salad: Whisk 1/2 cup vegetable oil with 2 tablespoons sugar, some lime juice, dry mustard, salt, chopped onion and 1 tablespoon poppy seeds. Toss with roasted beets and goat cheese.
36. Celery Salad: Mix sliced celery and red onion with diced soppressata. Toss with lemon juice and zest, basil, a big splash of olive oil, salt and pepper; shave Parmesan on top.
37. Watermelon-Feta Salad: Whisk 1 part white wine vinegar with 3 parts olive oil, and salt and pepper. Toss with baby arugula, red onion slices, watermelon cubes, crumbled feta, niçoise olives and fresh oregano.
38. Creamy-Crunchy Slaw: Mix mayo with cider vinegar and caraway seeds. Toss with shredded cabbage, scallion and green apple slices, crumbled cooked bacon, salt and pepper.
Bistro Bacon Salad
39. Bistro Bacon Salad: Chop and fry bacon; combine the drippings with cider vinegar, dijon mustard, olive oil, salt and pepper. Toss with mesclun greens; top with the bacon and a poached egg.
40. Black-Eyed Pea Salad: Whisk lime juice with minced garlic, ground cumin, salt, cilantro and a big splash of olive oil. Toss with black-eyed peas, minced jalapeño, and diced tomato, red onion and avocado.
41. Greek Rice Salad: Whisk olive oil, lemon juice, salt and allspice. Toss with chopped cucumber and tomato, scallions, parsley, dill, mint and lemon zest. Stir in cooked rice and a dash of hot sauce; top with feta.
42. Mimosa Salad: Toss butter lettuce with an herb vinaigrette (1 part vinegar, 3 parts olive oil, chopped herbs). Press a peeled hard boiled egg through a fine strainer to make an egg “mimosa;” spoon over salad.
43. Classic Waldorf: Whisk 1/2 cup mayo and 2 tablespoons sour cream with chives, parsley, lemon zest and juice, sugar and pepper. Toss with chopped apples, celery and walnuts.
44. Wedge Salad: Purée 1 cup each mayo and blue cheese with 1/2 cup buttermilk, 1 shallot, lemon zest, Worcestershire sauce, parsley, salt and pepper. Drizzle over iceberg wedges; top with egg mimosa (see No. 42) and crumbled bacon.
45. Curried Tuna Salad: Toast 1 tablespoon curry powder in vegetable oil; cool. Mix with mayo, lime juice, salt and pepper. Toss with canned tuna, red onion slices, cilantro and golden raisins.
46. Roast Beef Salad: Whisk 2 tablespoons each apple cider vinegar and honey mustard with salt, pepper and 1 cup hazelnut oil. Drizzle over endive, sliced pears and deli roast beef; top with blue cheese and hazelnuts.
47. American Potato Salad: Whisk mayo with parsley, relish and mustard. Toss with boiled quartered potatoes, and sliced celery and red onion. Fold in chopped hard-boiled eggs; season with salt and pepper.
48. Daikon Slaw: Simmer 3 parts rice vinegar with 1 part peanut oil, minced ginger and garlic, Asian chili sauce, salt and sugar. Toss with julienned daikon, napa cabbage and scallions; chill.
49. Macaroni Salad: Whisk 1/2 cup mayo, 3 tablespoons sour cream, dry mustard, sugar, cider vinegar, salt and pepper. Toss with cooked macaroni, sliced celery and red onion, and parsley.
50. Spanish Pimiento Salad: Grill scallions; chop. Toss with olives, pimientos, almonds, sherry vinegar, smoked paprika and romaine. Grill thick bread slices; rub with garlic, tear into pieces and toss with the salad.
Photographs by Sang An