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Salad Days of Summer!

As we move into summer, fresh green salads become so appealing. All those beautiful vibrant green leafy lettuces and spinach appearing in farm markets and greengrocers are irresistible!

Here are three delicious dressings that will make your salads more exciting! You can make a batch, store in a Mason jar and have it ready to go for lunch or dinner any time.

MISO CARROT DRESSING: gingery Asian flair for most salads. Very nice on avocado and cucumber.

1 carrot, peeled and chopped

1 small shallot, peeled and chopped

2 tablespoons ginger, peeled and chopped.

2 tablespoons white miso

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

¼ cup olive oil

2 tablespoons water

Whiz up the carrot, shallot and ginger in a food processor or blender.

Add the miso, vinegar and sesame oil and buzz again. Dribble in the oil

and water until blended.

MUSTARD VINAIGRETTE: a classic! Good on fresh green tender leaves, or even on cold chicken or fish salads

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons red wine or sherry vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

½ cup olive oil

1 small garlic clove, crushed

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Whisk all ingredients together, or blend in a food processor. For assertive garlic flavor, whiz up the garlic clove. For milder garlic flavor, add the crushed clove and allow to marinate for up to an hour and remove the clove before serving.

TAHINI GARLIC DRESSING: try it on a rice or quinoa bowl with steamed veggies!

¼ cup smooth tahini

3 tablespoons water

2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup

1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil (optional)

1 small clove garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

Whisk all ingredients, or blend in a food processor. If the dressing is too thick, add a little more water until you have your desired consistency. This is delicious drizzled over roasted or grilled vegetables, as a dip for raw veg, or as a dressing for slaws using any firmer veggies, like nappa cabbage or cauliflower.

Here’s a favorite main course salad recommendation that looks gorgeously inviting: SALADE NICOISE

This is a composed salad, meaning everything is artfully arranged on a

large platter.

Make a bed of fresh salad greens on your platter. Arrange various ingredients on top, in separate sections. Classics for this salad are chilled steamed green beans and new mini potatoes, boiled eggs cut in quarters, cherry tomatoes, avocado chunks, and seafood. Some good choices are tuna, poached salmon or steamed shrimp. You can make a vegetarian version by omitting the seafood and adding fresh tofu or cooked green lentils. Serve chilled, topped with mustard vinaigrette.

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