My wintry summer has turned into an inescapable sauna bath. I went in two days from wearing turtlenecks and contemplating boots to wondering if taking up naturism wasn’t such a bad idea after all.
All of this, of course, has me thinking about how best to cool myself, and the thought came to me in a flash: salad.
Lovely crispy, crunchy, cool salad. Mmm…salad.
I’ve always loved salads. When I discovered as a child that spinach came in salads, I was delighted. More spinach for Twistie! These days I make it often. Mr. Twistie has a far lower willingness to experiment with vegetables than I do, but salads usually make him happy.
And so it was that I began leafing (leafing? geddit?) through my cookbook collection for salady inspiration last night. Somehow I knew the good old Household Searchlight Recipe Book would have something of interest to say. Here’s how the section on salads and dressings begins:
Ingredients used in making salads should be selected according to the following rules: There should be a pleasing blend of flavors. This is often obtained by an unusual combination of foods, such as sliced oranges and pickled pearl onions served with French dressing.
There should be a contrast of textures. Soft foods should be mixed with those having fibrous and crisp textures such as fish combined with pickles and celery.
There should be a contrast of color. This may be obtained by combining vivid foods such as carrots, beets, pimientos, or green peppers with those having little or no color. It may be accomplished by topping the salad with a colorful food, seasoning, or dressing.
Particular attention should be paid to the arrangement. The ingredients should be placed neatly and attractively on the lettuce, watercress, cabbage, endive, spinach or Romaine on which the salad is served.
I don’t know about you, but while I appreciate varied textures and flavors, I’m in no hurry to try that orange, pickled onions, and French dressing one.
Of course, I could be wrong. The French dressing might be just the right thing. I’m just not nuts about French dressing.