Better than Pizza…salad?
Yep, I just said that.
Did I just say that? Better than pizza salad? I definitely did. Just said it.
Because its true. One night, Christopher and I were having a cleanoutthefridgenight, which is essentially a night where we eat all the random stuff in our fridge before it goes bad, when we had this salad.
Ok, so no, the salad just didn’t appear, but I did throw it together in about 5 minutes with leftovers we had in the fridge and some dried spices from the pantry. And then, I set a bowl of it down in between a plate of pickles and some reheated pizza….and well, the rest is history.
Although to be truthful, I suppose this salad could have been called “Better than Pickles Salad”, but that just didn’t seem as catchy.
So here we are, after we both chose to eat a salad instead of pizza…which I never really saw coming. No warning. I suppose we will all be better prepared the next time this happens.
This post, I’m assuming, is also well timed, as we probably are all reallllly sick of cooking elaborate meals at very stressfully placed holidays during the year…or maybe I’m the one that’s sick of cooking.
Not that I don’t love the holidays, I think my love for holidays and the changing seasons has been very well documented at this point. Its just that Thanksgiving’s strategic placement near the end of the semester, at the start of severe weather flight delays, and less than a month from Christmas, which is less than 2 weeks away from New Years is just crazy-making. I vote to space these holidays a little bit better. Not only would there be less stress, but if we moved some of these to summer, we wouldn't have to worry about the nor'easters that always seem to cancel 5 million flights right before or after Christmas. Don't even get me started on my Christmas break last year where I was stranded in Chicago during the polar vortex. The. Worst. Ever. There were no down coats big enough for that excursion.
So here we have it, a really impressive salad that you can make within 5 minutes, without cooking, that will impress your family and friends. It is a perfect way to use leftover chicken or turkey. (I told you this recipe was aptly timed.) It also doesn’t matter what types of salad greens you have- they all taste great. As of posting this, I have had this salad with romaine, arugula, kale, and bok choy. It is now glaringly apparent that I’ve had this salad about 10 times since its first creation.
I should note that Vegenaise isn’t exactly paleo; although far better than conventional mayonnaise, it contains safflower oil. Safflower is an industrial oil, although it has been noted that of all the industrial seed oils, this is probably the best choice as long as it is extracted without chemical or heat. Soy-free Vegenaise, however, does not contain grains, gluten, or dairy, so you’re safe there. For a truly Paleo option, I recommend making your own mayonnaise to substitute, however, this would increase the time to make the salad from 5 minutes to possibly 15. And really, You Only Live Once. So Eat That Vegenaise.
Or maybe we should just stick to YOLO.
And then make this salad.
Better than pizza….salad?
Makes 3 large salads, or several small salads
- 8 cups of your favorite salad greens
- 1 cup of Soy-free Vegenaise, divided
- 2 cups leftover shredded chicken or turkey
- ½ cup red grapes
- 2 medium sized celery stalks
- ¼ cup chopped hazelnuts (optional)
- 1 ½ tbsp. dried dill
- 1 tsp. dried onion powder
- 1 tsp. dried garlic powder
- Slice grapes in half lengthwise and dice celery stalks finely.
- In a medium sized bowl, mix leftover chicken or turkey with ¾ cup of the Soy-free Vegenaise, diced celery, halved grapes, chopped hazelnuts, dried dill, onion powder, and garlic powder. Stir until well incorporated.
- Add Vegenaise /poultry mixture to salad greens. Stir to incorporate, and add remaining ¼ cup Vegannaise slowly to thoroughly coat all greens. Serve immediately.*
*If you want to make this in advance, hold off on adding the Vegenaise mixture to the salad greens until just before serving to ensure that the greens remains crisp.