California Salad Recipes

Use these great California salad recipes and salad dressing recipes to incorporate a variety of vegetables into a different salad than you're used to.
By Kathryn Hannaford
May/June 1978
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These California salad recipes and salad dressing recipes will make a healthy addition to your meals.
PHOTO: JACEK CHABRASZEWSKI


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Try these California salad recipes and salad dressing recipes to add more fresh vegetables to your diet.

Vegetable Salad Recipes

Beet Slaw Recipe
Marinated Tomato Salad Recipe
Date Waldorf Salad Recipe
Carrot-Date-Cabbage Slaw Recipe
Cole Slaw Recipe
Carrot Raisin Salad Recipe
Lemon Honey Dressing Recipe
Sweet Soy Mayonnaise Dressing Recipe
Sesame Salt Recipe
Yogurt Dressing Recipe

In 1974, Kathryn Hannaford of Stockton, California published Cosmic Cookery, a book of protein-balanced recipes that called for no eggs, fish, fowl, or meat. The book was written, she said, not only "for beginners in natural foods cooking, who know little about the endless combinations of nature's delights and the many ways to prepare them," but also "for the experienced vegetarian who's looking for new ideas and inspiration."

Well, Cosmic Cookery — now in its third printing — does indeed provide both information and inspiration aplenty in tons of great salad recipes, and as proof of that, we offer you Kathryn's California salad recipes and salad dressing recipes.

California — more than any other state in the Union — is known for its wonderful, inventive salads. But it doesn't matter where you live: Anyone armed with the following California salad recipes can prepare an unlimited variety of beautiful, tempting, different salads.

To most people, the idea of a salad with a meal means a few tossed lettuce leaves and tomato wedges . . . with maybe some sliced radishes for added color. But when you become aware of the available variety of vegetables that can be used to make really great salads, you'll give that part of the meal more prominence on your table, and perhaps even make the salad course the most colorful and tasty part of your whole lunch or dinner. The following is only a partial list of the many exciting vegetables that can be used in California salad recipes.

Asparagus:

The tender, sweet tips can be eaten raw or (as the stalks should be) cooked until they're barely done.

Beet Greens:

Wash leaves well and cut into bite-sized pieces. High in vitamin C.

Beets:

Scrub well with a vegetable brush, dry, and grate. Very sweet and juicy this way. High in iron.

Bell Pepper:

Remove the inner core, seeds, and membrane and slice into julienne strips, or garnish your salad with pepper rings.

Bermuda Onion:

These mild red onions make colorful salad decorations when cut into thin rings. The rings may be marinated and served alone or added to bean salads.

Bok Choy:

Both the green leaves and the white, bulbous base can be chopped and used.

Broccoli:

All parts of this colorful green flowering vegetable can be added to salads. Cut the flowerets, leafy greens, and stems into very small pieces.

Cabbage, Green:

This slightly sulfurous-tasting vegetable is at its best when grated or shredded to release its juices.

Cabbage, Red:

Prepare in the same ways as green cabbage. Nice for color.

Carrots:

Shred the bright orange root finely to release juice, and mince the ferny green tops. High in vitamin A.

Cauliflower:

Use raw, and cut into small, bite-sized flowerets. The edible leaves surrounding the base of the head can be eaten like collard greens and may also be chopped and used raw in salads, or set aside to be eaten later as steamed greens.

Celery:

Slice the long stalks diagonally, or chop or mince them. The tender, sweet inner leaves enhance any salad, but avoid using the bitter outer leaves.

Chard, Rhubarb:

The broad, dark-green leaves and rich-red stalks may be finely cut and added sparingly to salads.

Chard, Swiss:

This is the same as rhubarb, with the exception of its flat white stalks. Follow the procedure for rhubarb chard.

Chinese Cabbage:

This juicy relative of the cabbage has long broad leaves with curly edges, which are delicious — chopped — as a salad green. Wash the leaves carefully.

Clover:

There's a tangy, sour taste to this well-known field grass. Use both the stems and the leaves in salads.

Collards:

The leaves should be washed carefully and chopped finely. They're also delicious served steamed with lemon juice.

Cucumber:

A sweet, meaty vegetable, traditionally sliced in rounds. Peel the skin if it tastes bitter or shows evidence of having been waxed.

Dandelion Greens:

Though slightly bitter, these wild greens are very tasty . . . especially while still young and tender. Wash them well and use them sparingly for flavor accents. Try marinating them for an additional treat.

Endive and Escarole:

Similar types of curly, loose-leaf lettuce with a slightly bitter flavor. Wash and chop, and add sparingly to other lettuces. They lend an interesting texture to salads.

Fennel (Anise):

The bulbous white root and green leaves taste like licorice and are delicious raw. Wash and chop to garnish a salad. Use sparingly at first.

Garlic:

This famous pungent bulb contains small cloves which can be peeled and then rubbed around the interior of the salad bowl — before the ingredients are added — for extra flavor zest.

Kohlrabi:

Similar to the turnip, but grows above ground. The bulky part must be pared, then grated or thinly sliced.

Leeks:

A type of onion similar to scallions, only sweeter and much larger. These should be washed very thoroughly, then chopped finely.

Lettuce, Butter:

Known in many parts of the country as Boston lettuce, these small, sweet heads of light-green to yellow leaflets must be washed carefully and torn by hand.

Lettuce, Head:

Also called iceberg lettuce. Wash briefly, then remove the wilted outer leaves and save them for soup stock. Chop, tear, or shred the crisp, firm head.

Lettuce, Red Leaf:

These loose heads are composed of sweet, tender leaves with curly, reddish tips. They, like butter lettuce, should be washed carefully and hand torn.

Lettuce, Romaine:

Has long, crisp leaves with crunchy spines that — chopped or torn — add body to a salad.

Mint:

A delicious common garden plant with a refreshing flavor. Wash the leaves and chop a few into your salads, or mince some to add a new zing to salad dressing.

Mushrooms:

Their delicate flavor and meaty flesh are welcome in any salad. Slice them lengthwise to show their pretty shape.

Mustard Greens:

These are long, tightly curled leaves with a hot, tangy flavor. Wash them well and use them sparingly for their piquancy.

Nasturtium:

Both the leaves and the buds of this flower can be used.

Parsnips:

Similar to turnips, only they have a more slender bulb. Wash and grate them.

Peas, Fresh Green:

Choose small pods with firm, tender, young peas. Remove the peas from the pods and add them — raw — to your salads.

Radishes:

Wash them, trim off the ends, and either leave them whole (to be scored into decorative "rosebuds") or slice them thinly . . . to add a crisp, tangy taste to the salad course.

Rutabaga:

Also called Swedes or Swedish turnips, these large vegetables are related to turnips and parsnips. The round, firm, meaty flesh is best sliced paper-thin or grated.

Scallions:

These are of the onion family, but much smaller than their relatives the leeks. Trim the roots from the white bulbs, and slice off the opposite ends where the shoots are greenest, then wash them and thinly chop or finely mince them.

Sour Grass:

The children find this tasty sour stem and small yellow blossom growing in fields, and bring it home for our salads. Wash and chop the whole thing.

Spinach:

Its spear-shaped dark-green leaves and stems are slightly astringent but have a deep, rich flavor. Wash each leaf separately, as they tend to be gritty, then tear or slice it into pieces.

Sprouts:

These are indispensable in salads. Many beans and seeds can be sprouted inexpensively at home to add tremendous nutrition to your raw salads. We've had success with lentil, soybean, garbanzo bean, mung bean, adzuki bean, and alfalfa seed sprouts in our own kitchen.

Tomatoes:

Use small, whole cherry tomatoes, or slice larger tomatoes into bite-sized sections.

Watercress:

This plant is found growing in shallow brooks. Its dark-green, shiny leaves and crisp stems contribute a fresh, peppery taste to salads.

Zucchini:

Use this delicate green squash while it's still quite firm and before it grows larger than medium-sized. Wash it and cut it — peel and all — into thin rounds or matchstick pieces.

Now that you've expanded (I hope) your conception of what can go into a salad, see the recipes at the top of this article for some ideas on how to "put it all together."


From Cosmic Cookery by Kathryn Hannaford, copyright 1974 by Starmast Publications. Reprinted by permission.


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