If salad nirvana is what you're after and you can't stomach another bad away-from-home salad, you realize that making it yourself is the only way. For all of you wild lunchers, you can check my original Raising the Salad Bar post for where to get a good one.
I want to share two salads that are refreshingly different and are a way to showcase those summer ingredients you've been fetching. They're also meal-type salads with a satisfying balance of protein and fiber. The key thing to remember when selecting your ingredients is to go for the best produce (obviously if it was picked that morning, it is going to taste magical and not need loads of dressing to mask any flaws).
I know, it shouldn't need telling. But so many places screw up the simple science that is salad-assembling that I feel it needs to be stressed.
AC 360 Salad
I named this salad after Anderson Cooper's show because he looks like he is a clean eater and it's a pairing of avocado and cashew cheese. The raw crackers add a nice nutty crunch as well as some additional nutrients. It's so simple
1/4 sliced avocado
2 tbsp of homemade cashew cheese
Bed of salad greens (I used a spring mix)
Handful of raw crackers, broken up over salad (I used One Lucky Duck Rosemary Quackers, but locally you could try Brad's Raw Chips which I have also found are tasty in salads)
Sprinkle of sunflower or flaxseeds
Goddess dressing (recipe here)
The Vegan's Cobb Salad
I swear by Soyboy Smoked Tofu if you want a sandwich-ready tofu that you will enjoy eating cold. It's amazing on spelt bread with Vegenaise and bibb lettuce, but I also love it in this salad and I've been known to sneak a piece of it to snack on straight. That's how smoky and satisfying it is. This is a cool, crisp salad with a hot tofu element. The figs add a juicy burst of summer and finding a great tomato is essential. This salad is a rare combination of ingredients at their finest, as we sourced everything except the tofu from the Farmer's Market.
1/4 of Soyboy smoked tofu package, per salad, chopped and pan-fried again
1 fresh fig, quartered
1/2 tomato, chopped (heirloom if you can find it)
1/2 baby cucumber, chopped (we found mini white cukes)
Half small head of Bibb lettuce, shredded
Agave dijon dressing (recipe here)
A salad experience is complete with a rustic homemade bread. I love Metropolitan's spelt loaf so much that I wanted to try my own and I found a recipe that only takes an hour to bake with five minutes prep.
I halved the Spelt Bread recipe and made 1 loaf, with almond milk and millet instead of sunflower. The millet crunch is like therapy. It also makes your kitchen smell like popcorn. This bread is dangerously good and stupid easy. It will be very hard to purchase bread when I know how quickly I can produce something this excellent.