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The Greeks and the Romans both enjoyed dishes of green leaf vegetables dressed with salted olive oil.
The English word “salad” is derived from the Latin word meaning salted.
To-day there is a large variety of dishes called salads but they are based on three basic styles of salads:
The garden or green salad which are based on the use fresh green leafy vegetables such as Lettuce, Rocket, young Cabbage etc and are normally dressed with an oil based dressing.
Vegetable salad which is based on a variety of fresh and cooked vegetables and are normally dressed with a vinaigrette or mayonnaise based dressing.
Bound salad, which is a salad that that holds it shape when placed on the plate with an ice-cream scoop. These are made from a variety of fresh, preserved and cooked vegetables, heavily dressed with a mayonnaise or sour cream based dressings.
During hot weather, salads are invaluable as they are cool and refreshing either as a side dish or as the main dish of the meal.
A perfect salad looks cool and inviting and the skill applied in blending the the ingredients makes for a pleasurable eating experience.
To make the perfect salad requires the the fruit, vegetables and herbs used must be of the best quality and as fresh as possible.
Never use salt in the water to wash or freshen the lettuce in.
Never sprinkle the lettuce once it is cut up with salt as the lettuce will lose its crispness.
Dry the lettuce by shaking it in a cloth before cutting up.
Lettuce and greens are better shredded than cut up.
Cucumbers can be made crisper by sprinkling with salt after being cut up about 15 minutes before being required. Any liquid that forms can be poured off before using.
To prevent eggs discolouring, place the eggs in to boiling water and boil for 12 minutes then plunge the eggs into icy cold water to cool them quickly.
All vegetables and fruit that are used to make the salad must be cold and clean.

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Replies to This Discussion

I also like mixed beans with or without cold rice,  and one can add cold cooked vegetables too or tomatoes or... anything  (but probably not salad or lettuce which makes it a strange type of salad);  is there any other names for this kind of cold dish ? I call it a mixed bean salad and only mix it with olive oil and some kind of condiments (red pepper ?) ...

Yes. It is a type of vegetable salad. My wife makes a salad that consists of tomatoes and young fresh cucumbers dressed with undeodorised sunflower oil. But sometimes she will add spring onions or fresh dill.

Dill goes great with cucumbers and tomatoes!

There is many variety on that type of salad but one that my friend uses is replacing the olive oil dressing by yoghurt.

Yes, yoghurt as salad dressing works great!

I'm perhaps the only person I know who likes Iceberg lettuce =)

With cucumbers, red onions and cheddar cheese.
Tossed with olive oil, sugar, hot mustard, herbs and lemon juice (sometimes with balsamic vinegar and I vary the herbs mixture.)
I rarely eat pastas without this side dish.

But I live alone and have lost countless heads of lettuce and cucumbers: I can't eat it all before it goes bad on me.

I love them myself. Also like Cos lettuce, but like everything else the use of them depends on what I desire in the finished dish. 

I know what you mean about the lettuce going off. 

Ever had an  egg and lettuce sanga, sandwich to you, Iceberg beats all the types especially the whiter inner leaves, Yummeee.

I do not like iceberg lettuce. I never eat it, actually. I love butter lettuce, Boston lettuce, romaine, or red leaf lettuce. I adore arugula. One of my favorite salads is arugula and tomatoes.

Let's start a group: The Icebergers.

I hate swimming in ice cold water. Hee Heee 

Salads are one of my preferred foods, they have always been. 

Hey, neat trick with the cucumbers, Davy! I did not know it!

Here's one of my favorite summer salads: Israeli chopped salad.

It's a bit of a pain because you need to chop the veggies in small cubes, like 1 cm X 1cm (0.5 in X 0.5 in or a bit smaller.

Chop in equal proportions: tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers. In about 1/2 proportion, chop red onions. Mix together, toss with a bit of salt, olive oil, tons of lemon juice, and tons of finely chopped cilantro. Let it sit for a bit before eating. Yum.

Sounds as finicky as making a Julian salad.


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