So….obviously cooking has never really been my thing. You’re shocked, I know. However, one of the very few things I do like to do in the kitchen is make salad. -ya cuz THAT takes an iron chef-
As long as there is minimal chopping to be done, I’m all for it. I like it so much, in fact, that I decided to name my salad Rainbow Salad! Yep, claiming it as mine. …And THIS is where I understandably lose the majority of you readers right now.
But, for you poor, poor souls who are determined to continue reading, let’s get colorful!
Everyone knows what a rainbow looks like. Uh, almost everyone. Unless you’re colorblind, which is just extremely unfortunate considering my favorite color is red. Back to rainbows. The bottom line: there are a lot of colors. That’s what I think a salad should look like, too. Not only should it blast my tastebuds with goodness, it should be a flamboyant, cocky array of delight to my eyes as well. That’s right. A salad should be flamboyant. What can I say, I like pretty things.
I confess, though, I’m a hypocrite. One of my kitchen requirements is minimal ingredients. For Rainbow Salad, this is a lie. The more ingredients you have, the more colors there will be, hypothetically.
This is my take on Rainbow Salad. I suppose you could have a different approach. But why think outside the box?!
- I use grape tomatoes. Do I cut them in half to make life easier when I go to eat this scrumptious bowl of healthy delicousness? Of course not.
- Dried cherries. Because they’re delicious.
- Sometimes I use red peppers. I say sometimes, because more often I use:
ORANGE & YELLOW
- Bell peppers. Mmmmmmmm. Unfortunately these do not come already pre-cut at the store, but I’ve been managing so far. They add the perfect pop of flavor.
- Sometimes I add carrots, but not very often.
- This is where you can get CrAzY! Use your imagination. Go wild. Be dangerous, you salad innovator, you.
- I typically use spinach and kale for my salad base. Already pre-cut and packaged, of course.
- Green onions. Did you know if you leave the base of the green onions (the white part with the roots), you can put them in some water and grow your own?! Nah, I haven’t tried it either. I should, though.
- Cilantro. For some zip.
- Avocado. If they’re affordable, which doesn’t happen very often in Colorado.
- Blueberries. CHA-CHING! I love blueberries on salad! No cutting, chopping, or hacking required. This is the moneyball to any salad, in my extremely humble opinion. You doubt me? Try it. Then maybe we can be friends again. Maybe. -I also thouroughly enjoy strawberries on salad, too-
- Red onion. Ok, so they’re called red onions, but they look pretty purple to me. So I’m going to leave it at that. If you’re like me, chopping onions is one of the least lucrative kitchen tasks known to man. Every time I do it, I end up looking like I just finished watching some moving, heartfelt movie with a sappy ending. Complete with puffy eyes and runny makeup. But, they taste fantastic, so bring it on.
Congrats, ladies and gents. We’ve successfully completed a rainbow -like every other toddler on the planet- . If you decide to pretensiously argue with me about skipping out on Indigo, we’re going to have words. Specifically: Really!? You’re correcting me on a food rainbow! Get over it.
The rainbow may be complete, but the salad is not. *Gasp* That’s right – it gets more colors!
- Portabella mushrooms. Surprisingly, I don’t buy these pre-sliced. Instead I opt to save 50 cents and slice them myself at home. I know they are a love/hate food, but I happen to love them. I could talk for a while on truffles…but I won’t. I love the mushrooms in the salad, but you could also drizzle truffle oil on the entire thing. YUM! Truffle oil just happens to be expensive and something I don’t necessarily think about when I go to the store.
- Black pepper. I’m slightly addicted. I put pepper on everything. Even if it already has pepper in it, it probably isn’t enough, so I’ll drench it with some more.
- Sometimes I add chia seeds as well. *Self promotion: for my article on seeds, click here.
- Sliced almonds. If I had the oomph to glaze or candy them I would. Instead, I just buy pre-sliced almonds and generously add them in. You could add in any type of nut or seed.
- Cheese. I often don’t add cheese to my salad right away. If I feel like it later, I’ll add either blue cheese, goat cheese, feta, or parmesan.
- You can add any sort of dressing to this. I usually do the same thing every time:
- Olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette. OR
- Sea salt, olive oil, and lemon juice. -if I’m feeling exceptionally enthusiastic, I’ll add crushed red pepper-
I think we’ve almost run out of colors. Well, there you have it. That’s my basic Rainbow Salad. Obviously there are thousands of variations -but mine’s the best-. You could always add chicken, shrimp, steak or any sort of protein to it as well. I could go in to the health benefits of everything listed, but I think I’ve bored you enough already. I make a giant bowl of this weekly, that way whenever I want some I can just go to the refrigerator and grab it without having to do any more chopping.
-sidenote: if you cover the salad, make sure it can breathe. It has mushrooms in it, which can get slimey if there’s no airflow-
For those of you who think this was a ridiculous post, I completely agree. But, you did finish reading the entire thing…
Dear Skittles: Taste the rainbow? …NAILED IT!