Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Try This at Home Tuesday: Farmers Market Salad

Happy Tuesday! I hope everyone had a great long weekend (at least for those that live in Canada and the US!). After a long absence from any "Try This at Home Tuesday" posts, I'm back with a salad idea. I've been on a salad kick since the beginning of the year as it's a great way to get lots of veggies into your diet and if you change up the toppings and/or dressing, it keeps things interesting. That said, I've been eating the same salad for the last several weeks and don't see it changing anytime soon! I do modify it slightly as the vegetables I use can vary depending on what is available at the farmer's market/my garden.

I thought I'd share it today in case anyone is looking for some lunch-time inspiration. I think it's pretty easy and not very time consuming which is ideal for these busy summer/fall weekends!

First up, you chop up whatever vegetables sound good to you. This week I went with 2 green peppers, 1 onion, a small bunch of organic rainbow carrots (I recommend buying organic so you don't have to peel them!), and a large zucchini. I know that is a lot of vegetables, but I like a high topping-to-greens ratio for my salad - otherwise it's not filling enough for me. After chopping everything up, I tossed it with some olive oil, put it on some foil-lined baking sheets, and seasoned it with salt, pepper, and dried oregano (which came from my herb garden!).

The veggies before going in the oven.
Then you roast them at 425F for 20-25 minutes. I usually have a couple of pans going so I switch the racks the pans are on after about 10-12 minutes, otherwise one cooks way faster than the other. The cooking time will vary depending on the size and the type of vegetable.

The finished product!
Roasted vegetables are so good as the roasting process brings out so much flavor and they can get a bit caramelized in the oven, especially the onions.

Next up, it's time to make the dressing. You could buy it from the grocery store, but check out the list of ingredients in Kraft's Balsamic Vinaigrette:

Water, Balsamic Vinegar (Wine Vinegar, Grape Juice, Water), Soybean Oil, Sugar, Canola Oil, Salt, Contains Less than 2% of Dried Garlic, Dijon Mustard (Distilled Vinegar, Mustard Seed, Water, Salt, White Wine, Tartaric Acid, Citric Acid, Spice), Spice, Xanthan Gum, Dried Parsley, Oleoresin Paprika, Potassium Sorbate and Calcium Disodium EDTA (to Protect Flavor).

You really only need 5 ingredients to make a great vinaigrette, and those 5 ingredients are things that are probably in most people's kitchen. 

Salt, pepper, olive oil, dijon mustard, and your vinegar of choice

I combine 1 T. olive oil, 1 T. vinegar (lately I've been using a white balsamic), 1/2 t. dijon mustard, and a couple of grinds of salt and pepper. Easy peasy and so delicious! You could probably cut these ingredients in half depending on how big your salad is.

For the salad assembly, I've been using grilled chicken or shredded rotisserie chicken for the protein, a 50/50 mix of spring greens and baby spinach, the roasted vegetables, cherries tomatoes, and chopped cucumbers (which come from my garden!). When packing this salad for lunch, it works best to put the toppings at the bottom and the greens on top.

Do you bring your lunch to work? If so, what is your favorite lunch to bring?


Erin said...

This has my mouth watering at 5:30am. I love roasted vegetables but have never put them on a salad! I'm going to give it a try!!!

I DO bring my lunch every day. Sometimes it is leftovers from dinner. If there aren't any of those I usually do a salad and fruit or a sandwich and fruit. I've started packing in the evening and it saves me time in the morn :)

Marlys Dotzenrod said...

Mmm, that sounds delicious! I don't roast veggies as much as I should but do love them, especially on the grill!
And the dressing recipe is so simple and delicious!

Charbelle4 said...


Stephany said...

Mmm... I love roasted veggies. I don't do it nearly enough!

I have to switch up what I bring for lunch CONSTANTLY. I was doing a salad for a few weeks and then I got tired of that. Now I've been doing (don't laugh...) PB&J sandwiches. I got this weird craving for them a few weeks ago, which is helpful because I needed to save money for moving and what's a more low-cost lunch than PB&J?! Haha. And they're so delicious, so win-win!

Gracie said...

You know, I actually bought xanthan gum several years ago, and use a tiny pinch to thicken my salad dressings (it also keeps herbs suspended a little better). I just noticed it in the dressing ingredients listed, and thought I'd recommend buying some! It's a natural product, cheap, and a little goes a long way, so it lasts forever.

Sandra Bond said...

Yum. That sounds delicious. Thanks for sharing!

Leigh said...

Can you come to my house and make it for me? :) Sounds delicious!

Jeanie said...

Looks fabulous whether it is make-and-take or dine-in!

Lauren @ Sassy Molassy said...

Yum! I always forget that just buying a rotisserie chicken could be so useful. I have done it on a few occasions, but this sounds like a great way to use one. I love roasted veggies. Roasted sweet potato/yam would be good on the salad too.

Abby said...

Yum! I need to get back to roasting veggies. I usually do more grilling of them , since it's been so hot! That looks delicious!

I make all my own salad dressings now for the most part! Greek yogurt, lemon, vinegar -- such good stuff!!

When I did work outside the home I always packed lunches. And now I make sure Ryan has a packed lunch every day -- he needs a lot of food so I make lots of left overs, lentil stews, and big salads!

I also try to take one night/week to clean and cut up fruit/veggies for snacks! So worth the time!

Jolene - EverydayFoodie said...

I absolutely love roasted vegetable salads!! I always take my lunch to work, and my favourite thing to take is leftovers. I love a warm lunch, so something leftover like lasagna, or whatever is the best :-)

Amber said...

I do bring my lunch daily - especially now that I work a 10 minute drive out of town!! Lately I've been bringing this skillet that I started making during whole 30 of potatoes, a whole bunch of veggies, and garlic sausage of some sort. It's super yummy. Today I added some leftover salmon to it as well! I still haven't tried the roasted veggie salad you make but it's on my list!