Does It Count As A Salad If There’s No Lettuce? – Episode 70
Every year I eagerly await summer.
I don’t love the heat. But, one thing that I’m reminded of without fail, every year, is that I love love love hearts and giggles love summer fruits and vegetables.
Move over cabbage and beets. There’s a new tomato in town.Ã‚ (What? Nobody knows.)
I’ve planted a garden for the past five years. Each year I start early. I’m so excited to get those seeds into the ground that sometimes I start in January (it’s hard not to when the warm winter weather is playing tricks on me). The little plants peek through the ground, shiver a little, and then stay the same size for what seems like months and months. And then summer hits and the plants seem to mature overnight. Oh yeah, I remember each year, they like the heat. So for this reason (and possibly this reason only), I too will occasionally say that I like the heat. Because I love what it produces.
My little garden doesn’t yield all that much. Mostly, it’s fun and kinda therapeutic to play in the dirt and see what will grow. Thankfully we have our weeklyÃ‚ Abundant Harvest OrganicsÃ‚ box to feed us, and my garden just adds a few things here and there (right now, mostly herbs – I’ve got basil, parsley, oregano, and chives that are growing happily).
This little salad is full of veggies and bread. Mmmm bread. I toasted it up, rubbed some garlic on it, ate a lot of it, and then topped it with some oil and vinegar dressed veggies.
You could use other herbs and veggies if you have favorites that I didn’t use. You could omit the green beans and add more tomatoes. You could use basil instead of tarragon. You could add chicken, bacon, steak…
Oh great, now I’m hungry again.
Whatever you use, this is a great summer meal that can be made in no time at all. If you leave the bread separate from the veggies and dressing, you could take it along on a picnic. Or you could just eat it at your desk while you write a blog post, frantically stuffing as much into your mouth as fast as your can, for fear that you will never eat anything this delicious again… oh wait, that was just me.
- 1 loaf bread, sliced (will end up with about 7-8 C when it’s chopped)
- olive oil
- pinch salt
- pinch pepper
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 1/2 C summer squash, grated
- 1 carrot (1 C), grated
- 1 C green beans, cut into 1″ pieces
- 2 T red onion (opt.), chopped
- 1/2 C cherry tomatoes, halved
- 1/2 C tomato, chopped
- 1 C parmesan cheese, grated
- Dressing: 1/2 to 1 T fresh tarragon, chopped
- 1 T fresh parsley, chopped
- 1/4 t chives, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, diced or minced
- salt (to taste)
- pepper (to taste)
- 2 T balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 C olive oil (or more – to taste)
- Arrange bread on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake at 350F for 10-15 minutes, or until slightly toasty. Rub each slice with the clove of garlic. Cut into chunks.
- Whisk dressing ingredients together. Toss with veggies and cheese.
- Right before serving toss veggie mixture with bread. OR place some bread on a plate and top with veggie mixture.
Some ideas for your menu.