Components Of A Perfect Salad
This article is authored by Dr. Shweta Shah. A practicing homeopath, she follows a patient-centred perspective, emphasizing the benefits of natural remedies and herbs, homeopathy and whole food nutrition.
Learning how to build the perfect salad ensures that you have the knowledge to make your own delectable salad and create interesting variations of the classic dishes. A well-balanced salad can be a complete meal. Contrary to popular belief, a salad can be delicious enough to awaken your taste buds and pep up your appetite. The key is to make it exciting and interesting!
When it comes to building the perfect salad, there are some components that can take your salad from dreary and unexciting to spectacular and impressive! These are some vital elements that every good salad ought to contain for it to be nutritious and healthy.
The formula to a gorgeous salad!
Power greens: Green leafy vegetables are a storehouse of vitamin A, K and C and are excellent sources of iron and potassium. Three go-to greens for a salad are – iceberg lettuce, spinach and cabbage. Crunchy and crispy, greens give your salad a perfect balance of colour, taste, texture and nutrients.
Add some vibrant colour: To lend vibrancy to the salad, include cherry tomatoes, yellow bell peppers, red onions, and carrots. The colours will add a lot of visual appeal and interest in your dish along with a different nutrients.
Pick a protein: You should incorporate healthy protein to add power to your salad. Protein is the building block for bones, muscles and nerves and is a key element in all hormones and enzymes. Top your veggies with some boiled egg or fish or chicken. If you are a vegetarian or vegan, then a suitable lentil will do the trick for you. Also, you could opt for dressings made from high-protein ingredients – eggs, beans, and tahini.
Throw in a dash of healthy fats: Healthy fats are an indispensable component of the food pyramid. They are good for your heart and necessary for your overall health. Avocado, nuts, nut butters and olive oil are very good choices.
Include some cheese: Cheese makes the salad delicious and satisfying! Cheese has loads of protein and calcium. It also provides a generous supply of vitamin A, vitamin B 12 and omega 3 fatty acids. Feta and cheddar are good options in a salad.
Make some dressing: Not only does the dressing, take your salad to the next level by adding flavour, it promotes the bioavailability of a lot of nutrients present in the vegetables. Dress your salad when just about to serve, otherwise it'll get mushy.
Take some topping: Salad topping elevates your dish by adding a layer of another texture. Choose from toasted sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, fresh fruits, dry fruits, walnuts and water chestnuts.
Delicious Salad recipes
We’ve got you healthy salad recipes to give you loads of inspiration!
Chickpea salad: Boiled chickpeas, cherry tomatoes, and fresh coriander make this salad a winner. Tahini, lime, yogurt and honey come together superbly as a dressing and give it loads of definition.
Lentil avocado and cottage cheese: A simple salad comprising of boiled dals, cubed avocado and soft paneer. Whisk vinegar, olive oil and mustard together to use as a dressing.
Peas, mint and cheese salad: A lively green salad with boiled peas, mint, and feta cheese. It’s perfect when served with garlic bread. Add a dressing as per your preference.
Every wonderful salad strikes the right balance of flavour, texture, colours and nutrients. Attempt to get a beautiful blend of colours as well as flavours to ensure maximum nutrients. Instead of chopping the vegetables into tiny pieces, slice them into strips. When shredded, the vegetables remain distributed throughout. Experiment with easily available ingredients in your kitchen like beans and lentils to create something new every time. Buy organic vegetables and unpolished Dals/Pulses such as rajma, kabuli chana etc. from the Tata Sampann range to ensure high nutritional value of your salad.
- Overview of the Health Benefits of Fruit and Vegetable Consumption, Journal f American Dietetic Association, 2000.
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