Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Chlorophyll-er Salad

I had all sorts of clever names for this salad, none of them fit just right. Then the color just jumped right out and demanded my attention. "I am a green salad.. I. AM. GREEEEEEENNNNNNN." the salad said to me. Not only is this a green salad, but there are many different shades of green, different flavors, contributing different nutrients.

The preparation pays attention to each ingredient individually, I took every vegetable aside..personally.. and said "how would you like to be cooked today" and the mushrooms said "cook us with onions" and the spinach said "wilt us with pasta" and the basil said "chiffonade chiffonade!!" you get the point.

So here is how to make the chlorophyller (which, incidentally, is a perfect treat post run on a hot day. I feel really replenished and energized!)

First, cook some penne pasta (about 1/4-1/2 box). When it is just about cooked (al dente) drain the water and add some olive oil and 1 love of garlic to the pot. Put the pasta back in, sprinkle with salt and add some chopped spinach (about 1-2 cups). Toss until the spinach lightly wilts into a loving embrace with the penne. Remove from the heat (I just put it all back into my strainer)

Now. Add some more oil to the pot and dice up 1 very small yellow sweet onion and salt. Add 1 cup of sliced mushrooms (whatever kind you like) and cook until the onions develop a nice tan. Remove from heat (put on a plate to let it cool).

In the hot pan, add a little more oil and some chopped broccoli (1/2 cup), asparagus (1/2 cup) and another clove of garlic (and a pinch of salt). Cook until they turn bright green. Remove from the heat and allow to sit, covered, until they have the right amount of crunch for you (not to crunchy not too soft). Meanwhile, dice up some olives (I used green olives stuffed with sundried tomato from the olive bar) Add the olives to the broccoli/asparagus.

1)Dice up some romaine or green leave lettuce (chopped salad style) and toss with a little oil, vinegar and pepper. This is going to be the bottom layer of the salad, so you want to use enough just to cover the bottom and sides of the bowl you are using.

2)Layer the pasta on top

3)then the mushrooms

4)some chiffonade fresh basil (use a lot. basil is yummy.)

5)squeeze some lemon juice (1 lemon) over the top of the broccoli/asparagus. mix well. Use mixture to top the salad.

Christina's vote: "A salad of substance. Admittedly I ate around the pasta-but you know how I feel about noodles in my salad"

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