August 1999 – Summer and salads, they really go together.

As I write this, it is a very hot summer here in Ontario, where I live, the hottest on record. And when the weather is hot, I don’t want anything to do with hot foods, so I pretty much live on salads. Which is okay, because salads are usually full of vegetables, and heathy ingredients.

If you are watching your calorie or fat intake, stay away from dressings with a lot of oil, or reduce the oil called for, and use light mayonnaise when mayonnaise is called for in your favorite recipe.

The great thing about salads is that anything goes: take a fresh tomato or two from the garden, drizzle with a little olive oil or balsamic vinegar, snip a little basil over top; that’s a salad. Lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, bottled salad dressing; that’s a salad. One of my favorites is Greek salad: maybe some lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, red pepper, green onions, black olives, crumbled feta cheese. Drizzled with a dressing of lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, a touch of olive oil, oregano, honey. The point is, you can whip up a salad in a few minutes with whatever you have on hand.

Most salad recipes are very flexible, it’s not like a cake recipe where if you don’t follow it exactly the cake won’t rise. You can adjust – add or subtract from them depending on your taste (and what you’ve got in your fridge).

So try out some of these recipes as a starting point, experiment, and stay cool!