When I lived in England and France, lunch was often a salad. In English pubs they do smashing salad plates where they pile together an assortment of salads. In France,the cruditee plate is a favorite of mine for lunch, again, a piling on of assorted vegetable salads on a plate. Although I don't remember having one for dinner when eating out in those countries, theywere quite normal for lunch. Here in America, we already have an appreciation for enjoying a large salad for dinner in a restaurant or at home.
Jeanne Kelley is extending the salad as a maincourse idea in her new book, Salad for Dinner.
This is an organized book, which makes it easy to learn from. Recipes for salads are divided into salads made from vegetables, salads with meat,salads with chicken, and salads with fish. Before you get to the recipes, there are complete instructions on how to clean greens, how to forage for salad, and how to grow greens for salads. And thereis a lot to learn. I had never heard of mizuna, tatsoi, puntarelle, or miner's lettuce. And many ingredients in the recipes are ones that I have never come accross, so it was fascinating to readthrough this cookbook.
Once I dug in and tried a few recipes, I was very content. The roasted acorn squash and brussels sprouts salad was superb and beautiful to look at with deep yellows, greens anddeep reds---and it was absolutely delicious.
It's the flavor combinations Jeanne blends together that are so compelling. Beets and Blood Oranges and Goat Cheese and Almonds. Smoked Turkey andPort Figs and Blue Cheese and Whole Wheat Croutons. Mixed Greens with Farro and Bacon and Dates and Walnuts and Pears and Parmesan. See what I mean? Crunch and silk and salt and sweet all on one...