Summer salads: YUM.
When the thermometer hits those dizzy summer highs, nobody wants to be stuck indoors cooking, much less turning on the oven. Combine that with the urge to quickly pull something together that’s tasty and portable, and you’ve pretty much defined the summer salad.
You’ve probably made most of the classics — potato, egg, tuna, chicken — you name it, they’re there, with their assortment of veggies and dollops of mayo. If you’re looking to change them up a bit, here are some recipes that will let you keep the creamy while adding a subtle new flavor to your salad repertoire.
Egg salad is quite possibly one of the quickest, most delicious starts you can make to your day. Simply boil some eggs (which you can do the night before to save even more time) and then peel and chop them. Grab an avocado, cut it open, and mash the delicious flesh with some salt and a squeeze of lemon. Chop the eggs and stir them in, and there you have it — a protein-packed, portable breakfast (or lunch). Top off your favorite whole-grain toast with a helping of the green-hued goodness for a fabulous flavor explosion.
Potato salad is one of those summer classics; it has to be in your picnic rotation! But if you’re keen to try potato salad with a twist, adding avocado may be just the thing. First, roast your potatoes with a healthy sprinkling of herbs, and then let them cool. They’ll be easier to transport (and eat!) while keeping some of that caramelized post-roasting goodness. While they’re cooling, make your avocado-based dressing using lime, cilantro, salt, pepper and, of course, mashed avocados. Then add your cooled roasted potatoes and toss. The salad will be perfect as is, but if you want a bit of crunch, crisp some bacon and sprinkle the homemade bacon bits on top. Chopped fresh cilantro or other herbs can be used for a gorgeous green garnish.
Combining textures and flavors is the best way to keep things interesting in the kitchen, so try this recipe when you’re ready to switch up your tuna salad recipe. Chop two stalks of celery and two dill pickles, adding these to half of an apple (diced) and a tin of tuna. Add some creamy zing with 1 tablespoon of grainy mustard and half of an avocado that you’ve mashed. Stir and use it as a topping for toast or some crisp romaine leaves. The tang of the mustard and pickles is balanced by the gentle sweetness of the apple and the freshness of celery, with the avocado lending just enough creaminess to make the tuna deliciously spreadable.