Monday, January 18, 2010

My New Favorite Salad (This Week)

At some point last weekend I found a moment for myself to sit down and channel surf for a minute. Since I'm trying to maintain a healthy diet I've actually been staying away from FoodNetwork, and to a certain extent, Allrecipes. Much too tempting! But I came upon Martha Stewart, and her guest was actress Ellen Burstyn, and I arrived just in time to hear Ms. Burstyn say she sticks to a raw diet for breakfast and lunch, and then eats cooked food for dinner.

Hmmm. Interesting! I've been curious about raw diets - not that I want to actually change to a completely raw diet, but let's face it. Most of us could use a couple raw "meals" every now and then, and I don't mean sushi. So I watched to see what would happen next and she went on to say she loves salads. What followed was a simple, but interesting salad that I've been thinking about ever since.

Red Cabbage Salad - Click here for the recipe - I did tweak ever so slightly, but there's definitely room for adjustments based on your preferences. And let me tell you, if you're getting tired of lettuce based salads (like I am...did I mention I've lost 4.2 pounds since January 1st? Well, just in case you missed it...)

Mix together the vegetables - for about half a recipe, I used:
1/2 head red cabbage
1 cup English cucumber, diced
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1 large carrot, grated
2 tbsp. raisins
2 tbsp. cilantro

Then, because someone was using the computer, I made the following dressing from memory (I was amazingly accurate!):

Juice of one large lemon
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp. garam masala
Salt & pepper to taste

I was really tempted to add some more vinegar, but luckily I did not. The dressing is perfect as is!

Then I remember she put in sunflower seeds...I can't find mine. (I know I have them, though - doesn't that make you crazy when you know you have something but can't find it?!) Anyway, walnuts seemed like a good substitute, and it turned out to be a good choice!

Lemon juice, olive oil and garam masala - an EXCELLENT dressing! And this salad is crisp, colorful and delicious!

And along with Grilled Lemon Chicken from Allrecipes, it's going to be my lunch every day this week!

I'm going to need more cabbage.

***Note: Garam masala is a blend of various spices commonly used in Indian cooking. The best garam masala is made fresh from whole toasted spices ground together, but frankly since I have an overflowing spice cabinet, I use a simple recipe from Allrecipes for Easy Garam Masala. You can also find bottled blends (or packets of the whole spices, ready for grinding) in many supermarkets and ethnic shops.


thamesarino said...

mmmm.. sounds similar to a Chakra salad I was on a kick with for awhile. I did a daytime raw diet for a few months prior to my pregnancy with my son. I lost about 20 pounds in that time, and felt really good. I couldn't maintain it while I was pregnant though.. and I think that in some ways it wasn't good for me because of the lack of calories. I was eating plenty of food, but most of it being veggies made it so that I was eating very few calories... so I gained a bunch of weight when I went back to eating cooked foods(and of course more meat and dairy as well)... just to throw it out there, be aware of how low your calories can go with the raw food diet(even part time).
With that being said I LOVED a bunch of foods I used to eat then. There is a whole communuty of people(online and otherwise) who eat this way and they have lots of recipes. There's a whole thing about sprouting beans and grains that goes along with it... I can look for some of my old links if you're interested.
Enjoy your new salad... it looks luscious!! : )

5thsister said...

First, congrats on the weight loss. Second, that salad and dressing sound amazing. And I actually have all the ingredients to make that quick and easy garam masala! Hmmmmmm. I think I may have to make a batch of this up. Thanks Christine!

Holly said...

That sounds fantastic, like 5th Sister I have all those ingredients and may have to try this tomorrow.