A Winter’s Salad

Some people get depressed when the days get short and the weather turns bleak and cold. My mood sags when summer fruits and veggies disappear from the farmer’s market, especially if there’s no snow to compensate.

This past Saturday I bought lettuce, but no sprouts. With cukes long gone, and tomatoes with flavor also in the distant past, what in the world was I going to do about my salad? I could turn entirely to cooked veggies for winter. There are two bunches of kale taking up most of my veggie drawer, and that’s all the green leafiness a person could possibly need in a week. But I wanted salad, and I wasn’t going to eat only lettuce with salad dressing.

The broccoli and kale were out because I don’t like them raw. I could have done apples, nuts, and cheese, but I didn’t have the right cheese and wanted something lighter, anyway. Celery was too crunchy for my poor jaw, as would be carrot or that beautiful watermelon radish, sadly languishing amongst the veggies destined for actual dishes. And then I thought about shredding the carrot and radish. Brilliant!

The flavor combination of sharp radish and sweet carrot was a perfect balance with a little salt and pepper and lightly dressed in balsamic vinaigrette. The strips were juicy and the colors were crazily vivid. I ate more than the one plate of salad before the rest of my meal (tempeh sloppy joes–recipe forthcoming!) It’s ridiculously easy but so beautiful and flavorful, you could serve it at a dinner party.

Shredded Root Veggie Garden Salad

(Yield: two large salads)

  • Leaf lettuce, torn–enough for a bed on each plate
  • 1 giant carrot
  • 1 big watermelon radish (or other red colored radish)

On top of your bed of lettuce, grate carrot and radish. Toss. Serve with balsamic vinaigrette, salt, and pepper. Ta-da!

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