SLICE OF LIFE BY EILEEN GOLTZ

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Summer is over. Ok, not truly officially over but rather  in a school has started, all the pools are closed and the High Holiday items are s start to show up in the grocery aisles kind of summer is over .  However, the temperature still hasn’t gotten the memo that it’s supposed to drop to a tolerable level and I’m still in wanting to eat cool meal without heating up the kitchen (as well as thinking about what to serve in the Sukkah). This is when I start making layered salads. Great veggies are available, they don’t take long to throw together and I can whip them up in the morning and they are ready to go when I’m ready to go when we get home from shul and I need to feed my rampaging hoard of guests.

            The standard ingredients in most layered salads are lettuce or spinach (or both!) hard boiled eggs, meat or smoked fish,  grated cheese if it’s a fish dish, green onions, and green peas, which are layered in a pretty glass bowl so the layers can be seen in all their glory.

But the true sign of a great layered salad is the dressing : an incredibly simple topping, spread over all the goodies to “seal in” the flavor of the ingredients below. After that, it’s covered, refrigerated for at least 1 hour but hopefully at least 6 to 12 (you can make it the night before for lunch the next day), and then tossed just before serving. A perfect dish for shabbos, yontif or just an evening where making dinner in the morning is the perfect choice for someone on the go.

Salad Note: One 10-ounce bag of salad greens yields between 4 to 5 cups and all the salads can be tossed and eaten immediately but, for best results all of them taste better if they are chilled for at least 1 hour before serving.

CLASSIC LAYERED SALAD (meat)

2 heads Iceberg or Romaine (or a combo of the two) lettuce, chopped

8 ounces baby spinach, torn

salt and pepper, to taste

2 cans sliced water chestnuts, drained

8 whole hard boiled eggs, chopped

1 lb crisp cooked kosher breakfast beef crumbled or pastrami or salami, chopped

4 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped

10 green Onions, green and white parts, sliced thin

1 bag (10 Ounce) frozen peas

Dressing:

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup pareve sour cream

1 tablespoon sugar

Up to 2 tablespoons, fresh dill, chopped or 1 tablespoon dried

In large glass bowl combine the lettuce and spinach and mix to combine. Sprinkle the water chestnuts on top of the greens. Sprinkle the eggs on top of the water chestnuts, then the crumbled  meat on top. Spoon the tomatoes over the top of the meat. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper over the tomatoes then place the green onions on next. Sprinkle the peas on top. In another bowl combine the mayonnaise, pareve sour cream, sugar and dill and mix to combine. Spoon the dressing over the top of the peas and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. You can toss and serve immediately but it’s best if you let it sit for at least 2 hours and up to 10 before serving. Serves 8 to 10.

My files, modified from a bon appétit article, date unknown

SEAFOOD LAYERED SALAD (dairy and fish)

8 cups mixture of torn romaine and bib lettuce and spinach if you like

2 (8-oz.) can sliced water chestnuts, drained

1/2 cup chopped red onion

2 cups (about 7 oz.) fresh snow pea pods, halved

4 stalks celery, chopped

2 cans baby corn, drained and cut into pieces

1 lb. kosher  imitation crabmeat chopped into bite sized pieces

Dressing

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup sour cream (you can use the pareve sour cream)

1 tablespoon prepared white horseradish

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon lemon juice

In large glass bowl combine the lettuce and spinach and mix to combine. Sprinkle the water chestnuts on top of the greens. Sprinkle the red onions on top of the water chestnuts, then the snow pea pods on top of the water chestnuts. Sprinkle the chopped celery then add the imitation crab. Place the baby corn on top of the crab meat. In another bowl combine mayonnaise, sour cream, horseradish, mustard, lemon juice and dill and mix to combine. Spoon the dressing over the top of the baby corn and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. You can toss and serve immediately but it’s best if you let it sit for at least 2 hours and up to 10 before serving. Serves 8 to 10.

Submitted by Lois Rose Glenview IL

TEX MEX LAYERED SALAD (meat)

6 cups torn romaine lettuce

2 cups shredded cooked chicken

1 can (11 oz) corn, drained, liquid saved

2 tablespoons taco seasoning mix

1 red bell pepper chopped

2 stalks celery chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded, chopped

1/2 cup pareve ranch dressing

1 cup corn chips, crumbled

2 tablespoons salsa

In a bowl combine the chicken and taco seasoning. Mix to coat. Set aside. In a bowl place the salad on the bottom. Place the chicken on top of the lettuce. Spoon the corn on top of the chicken then the chopped peppers, celery and jalapeno. then drizzle the dressing over the top. Just before serving spoon the salsa over the top and then top with the crumbles corn chips. Mix to combine and serve. Serves 6 for lunch and 4 for dinner.

Submitted by Marcie Flickenger Chicago IL

SMOKED SALMON LAYERED SALAD (dairy and fish)

3/4 cup plain yogurt

2 tablespoon oil, olive

2 tablespoon lemon juice

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 teaspoon pepper

1/3 cup parsley, chopped

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1cup shredded romaine lettuce

2 cups fennel, thinly sliced

2 cups blueberries, or seedless red grapes

8 oz smoked salmon (not lox) (or white fish if you prefer) broken into bite sized pieces

1/2 medium honeydew cut into bite sized pieces

1 medium melon, cantaloupe, peeled and cut into chunks

In a small bowl, combine the yogurt, olive oil, lemon juice, honey, garlic, salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper. Whisk to combine and set aside. In another bowl combine the lemon zest, parsley and remaining pepper and set aside. In a glass bowl place the shredded lettuce on the bottom. Next place the cantaloupe on top of the lettuce, then layer the fennel, blueberries, salmon, and honeydew in that order. Sprinkle the parsley mixture over the top of the honeydew. Cover for at least 1 hour but up to 12 and just before serving spoon the dressing over the top and toss to coat. Serves 6.

You can substitute 8 ounces of fake crabmeat for the smoked fish.

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