Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Super Easy Italian Salad

Just take a look at this tasty salad:

Please excuse all the nooch. Lol. I love that stuff!

My boyfriend's Mom made this salad for us on Christmas Eve when I was having dinner at her house. It's super easy to make. My salad still isn't as good as hers (you know how that is... it's always better when someone else cooks!), but nevertheless, I've ate it for lunch the past two days. The olives add a nice oily, salty touch that makes up for any need of dressing. The only thing I do to finish off this salad is sprinkle it with nooch and lemon juice. I made this salad once with plain romaine and once with an "American blend" that had romaine, iceberg lettuce, carrots, and purple cabbage. It tastes MUCH better with the American blend! Also, I used nooch, but you can use vegan Parmesan (or even nothing) to your tastes.

Also, as a note, some people are dead set against eating raw mushrooms, so feel free to leave them out. I'm completely aware that the common button mushroom contains small amounts of hydrazines, but that's why I only eat them very rarely and why I top them with lemon juice. DO NOT eat any other species of mushroom raw, and especially not wild ones. As I was looking up hydrazines, I read a story where a bunch of people in California got sick eating raw morels (which grow around here). I was dumbfounded. Like, for serious? Even us Missouri folks fry them bitches up, and we all know what happens when we eat too many of the cooked variety... I couldn't imagine eating them raw! That's just no bueno! I also realize that many raw food recipes utilize shiitakes and portabellos, but they're usually dehydrated long enough at a temperature high enough to destroy those compounds.

So, anywho, what I'm saying here is eat raw mushrooms at your own risk. Do your own research and decide for yourself!

And now, here's this tasty salad. This recipe makes one huge bowl o' salad, perfect for lunch. I like to serve it with a nice slice of crusty bread buttered with some Smart Balance Light. Yum.

Easy Italian Salad:
1/2 bag "American blend" salad mix
1/3 c. canned artichoke hearts, drained, rinsed, and chopped (not the marinated kind)
10 black olives, sliced (I like olives, but they sort of "top out" in terms of enjoyment if I eat too many).
1 tomato, chopped
1/8 of a red onion, super thinly sliced
1-2 button mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 Tb. lemon juice (estimate, just the amount in a slice or two)
Nooch or vegan Parmesan to taste

In a large salad bowl, toss together everything except the nooch/Parm, then sprinkle it to taste.

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