Saturday, May 23, 2009

Raw Summer Salads

My good friend, Erin, is a student at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, and every few weeks or so she goes down to NYC for a weekend workshop. Each weekend has a line-up of very interesting speakers (haven't you've always wanted to see Andrew Weil's huge white beard in person?!?!) - with topics ranging from Veganism, Raw Dairy, Whole Grains, etc. I'm hoping Erin can guest-post soon and tell us more!

Last weekend, she heard a Raw Foods expert speak and told me how interesting it was. I did a little research (is this really a carrot stick bunny rabbit lifestyle?) and learned more about all the important benefits of eating a majority of raw foods. No, I could never be a strict Raw Foods follower, and no, I don't think it is a 100% healthy way to live (and there is only so many kiwis and nut foams one girl can down...) but I think it is important to try and eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables so I challenged myself to try and "go raw" for a few days. (Checklist of Raw Food Benefits!)

Fist stop: Produce Aisle. I stocked up on fruits & vegetables and within 3 days ate pretty much every piece. I'll share more raw recipes soon, but these two salads were some of my favorites - delicious and satisfying, taking advantage of all the beautiful produce available this time of year.

Raw Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Pine Nuts & Olives:
2 zucchinis, sliced paper thin on a mandolin
juice of 1 lemon
1 handful pitted olives (any kind you like, I used kalamata) chopped
1 handful basil leaves, chopped
1 handful pine nuts, raw (or toasted if you're not into the raw thing, which adds more flavor)

After slicing the zucchini, toss with lemon juice & salt. Let sit on the counter for a couple hours as the acid in the lemon juice begins to break down the zucchini and the salt brings out the moisture. After a couple hours, drain off the excess liquid.
Toss the zucchini ribbons with chopped olives, basil, and pine nuts. Mix to combine and serve up!

*Nick tried this and gave it two thumbs up!

Tomato, Cucumber & Red Onion Salad:

This is the traditional red-wine-vinegar-ey salad you find at picnics and salad bars. I love it's tang!
2 tomatoes, sliced
1/2 English cucumber (the longer more delicate cucumbers with thin skin & tasty seeds) sliced paper thin on a mandolin
1/2 red onion, sliced thin

3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
salt & pepper

Toss veggies w/ dressing and let sit in the fridge for an hour or so to get nice and juicy. Drain off excess liquid if needed (if the tomatoes and cucumber are very ripe the salt in the dressing will bring all the water out of the veggies).

Enjoy salad on the porch...

1 comment:

  1. For those of us who have a phobia regarding oversalting and wasting food, _please_ post how much salt, and what type, you use preparing these dishes. Thanks so much.


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