More than Just a Salad
Prepared salads feature a lot in supermarket shopping baskets. People often feel relatively satisfied that they are buying a healthier option, but there are a few things to watch out for. Firstly are the salad leaves. Try to pick salad leaves that have washed in spring water only or buy the lettuce as a whole. There are questions by some about the chlorine levels in the water used to wash pre-pared salads.
Remember that the fruit or vegetables in the salad will have been cut days before you buy and them. These start losing their nutrient value as soon as they are chopped or exposed to air.Secondly, watch what is going into the dressing. I often check to see what types of oils they are using. Good dressings will usually contain mostly extra virgin olive oil while cheaper dressing contain vegetable oils or sunflower oils, processed in a way that usually leaves them rancid. These rancid oils have been linked to obesity and heart disease, to name but a few. Also check what additives and preservatives are in the dressing.
Below is a simple salad and dressing you can make yourself at home. You can substitute the leaves and the vegetables for whatever you have in your fridge!
- A head of lettuce (Butterhead or Lollo Rosso)
- 2 tablespoons of lightly toasted pumpkin seeds
- 2 carrots (grated)
- ½ head of red cabbage (very finely sliced)
- 50ml extra virgin olive oil
- Juice of ½ a lemon
- ¼ teaspoon Dijon or wholegrain mustard
- Salt and freshly cracked pepper
- Wash lettuce well, dry well and prepare vegetables. (10 mins)
- Make dressing by placing all the ingredients in a bowl and mixing well. (3 mins)
- Toss salad in the dressing and serve – here you have your own homemade salad in 15 minutes!