Using a recipe for a salad always seems silly: it’s just tossing a bunch of greens in a bowl, right? To be honest, my answer is yes—in terms of ingredient choices and their proportions. But the quality of those ingredients, how you toss them, and especially how you toss them in dressing can result in a soggy mess or a crisp, fresh delight.
My favorite salads have always been more stuff than greens. Even buried under a dozen freshly harvested vegetables, I can’t get excited about iceberg, Romine, or most leaf lettuces. I didn’t discover the appeal of salad greens until I lived in London and had my first taste of arugula or, as the Brits call it, rocket. Only recently sold in the United States as a loose salad green instead of in tiny, overpriced portions as an herb, arugula’s spicy, slightly bitter bite becomes the star on the salad plate. But you’ll still be disappointed in a light arugula salad—and heavier tuber-based ones—unless you dress it right.
Learn to make Arugula–Asparagus Salad and Mushroom–Sweet Potato Salad