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Scrumptious Salads

Scrumptious Salads

Diverse, delicious, colorful and nutritious, and simple to make too!

by

We all have those days (or weeks) when we simply don't have the time to cook a proper meal, but our families still need nutritious, filling food. I came up with this cheap and easy solution for those busy days - salads. Diverse, delicious, colorful and nutritious, these salads are simple to make and keep in your fridge as the base of any meal.

Tabbouleh

TabboulehThis salad can be easily customized for even the pickiest eaters, and can be made gluten-free. Pretty much any fresh vegetable can be used. I've even seen it made with oranges, raisins, pomegranate seeds, and chopped pecans. Try substituting quinoa instead of bulgur to expand you nutritional base and add an extra punch. With your grain and your fresh vegetables covered, all you need is a protein like chicken, fish, or cheese to make this meal complete.

  • 1 ½ cups water or broth
  • 1 cup bulgur
  • 8 oz canned corn
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 bell pepper (I like orange), diced
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons dried parsley

Bring the water and bulgur to a boil in a medium saucepan, then cover and simmer on lowest flame for 15 minutes. Fluff with a fork and allow to cool before adding to the chopped vegetables and corn. Whisk together the dressing in a separate bowl before pouring over the salad. Chill in the refrigerator for several hours before serving.

Note: This salad is even better if you use fresh parsley and add some chopped fresh mint.

Kasha Salad

Kasha SaladPerhaps the most common use for kasha in the Jewish kitchen is kasha varnishkes, but kasha can really be quite versatile. This cold salad has a unique flavor and can be paired with any protein to make a balanced meal.

  • 2 cups water or broth
  • 1 cup kasha, rinsed 3-4 times until water is clear
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 generous tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 generous tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt to taste

Bring the water to a boil in a medium pot and add the rinsed kasha. Cover tightly and simmer for 12 minutes. Fluff with a fork and allow to cool before adding to the chopped vegetables. Dress with the remaining ingredients, chill for a few hours and serve.

Tuna Noodle Salad

Tuna Noodle SaladThis salad is a meal all by itself, but we like to add a little bit of cottage cheese on top. Especially good during the summer months when you don't want to cook, this is a good, easy way to satisfy hungry bellies.

  • 1 lb spiral (or whatever shape you want) pasta, cooked
  • 2-6 oz cans tuna, drained
  • Italian dressing
  • Any assortment of fresh vegetables from below, depending on your taste:
  • 2 carrots, grated or thinly sliced
  • 1 zucchini, grated
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red onion, finely chopped or 2-3 scallions, finely chopped
  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • ½ cup frozen peas, thawed
  • ½ cup frozen green beans, thawed

Allow the pasta to cool before mixing together all the ingredients and topping with Italian dressing. Allow to chill for an hour or more before serving.

Chickpea Salad

Chickpea SaladThis one is a big winner with my toddler and is an easy finger-food for a child with enough teeth to chew well. The chickpeas are a great source of protein and minerals such as phosphorous, magnesium, and iron. Oh, and did I mention that they're delicious?

  • 2-16 oz cans garbanzo beans (chickpeas), rinsed and drained
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 large clove of garlic, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon crushed chili pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Mix together all ingredients and chill for one hour before serving.

Note: If you want to mix things up a little bit, try doing half kidney beans and half chickpeas, or adding some peas.

Published: April 21, 2012


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Visitor Comments: 3

(2) Anonymous, April 26, 2012 8:16 PM

Chickpea Salad is delicious and so easy! Perfect for a crowd. I put in one can of chickpeas and one can of kidney beans and it was great!

Devorah, May 8, 2012 1:38 PM

I love adding other beans! I have a separate salad that is more specifically for mixed beans. I'm also in Israel, where kidney beans are not readily available in cans and cooking them takes advanced notice, so I usually just stick to chickpeas.

(1) Anonymous, April 22, 2012 11:46 PM

great salads!

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