To the editor:
Last week, dietitian Emily Ring highlighted my “Super 10 Vegetable Salad” in her NDN health and fitness column, giving it her stamp of approval. She mentioned how easy it was to prepare, with a rainbow of colors, great variety of vitamins and minerals, with about 6 grams of fiber per serving. Without dressing each serving totaled only 87 calories.
Recently, this lengthy variety of vegetables has created lots of comments in my extended family, with the main controversy being, “Why so many vegetables?” My response was “Why not? They’re all quite nutritious!” My two sisters continued to state that more wasn’t necessarily better, which gave me some cause for further thought.
Since it’s always good to have a second choice, I took a recent survey of family and friends to find what would make a good “semi-salad” along the same lines, with perhaps only half the vegetables. The overwhelming majority came up with the “first five” on this list of original 10 vegetables. Here’s how it looks: 1) broccoli, 2) romaine lettuce, 3) tomatoes, 4) carrots, 5) cauliflower, 6) peppers, 7) celery, 8) mild yellow onions, 9) radishes and 10) chickpeas.
When preparing a super-sized salad for lots of company, most folks still recommend all 10 of these super vegetables. Their feeling is that you might as well go all-out on something like this rather than just halfway. I am included to agree!
So if you’re involved in a large potluck anytime soon, go ahead and raid the vegetable section of your super market, and be a little daring. Feel free to substitute mild red onions and multiple colored peppers, which some people prefer. This formula, tested over time, with the addition of pepper and seasoned salt around really hit the spot.
My only suggestion, which comes from the experts, is to keep dressings in the bottle until serving time. This way, any leftover salad can be refrigerated and will remain fresh for another day or so. The same is true for your original vegetable purchase, which may not all be used the first time around.
I think my dear late wife Mary would be proud of me for sharing this super-salad idea with my friends in my community. She was one of the best!