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Salads: we may have spent our childhoods wishing we didn’t have to eat them, but as we get older many of us who are passionate about healthy living will begin to realise that these tasty delights can be truly delicious, as well as a potentially good for you.
In fact, for some, a great salad can actually beat-out the dessert when it comes to being the best bit of a meal! Fantastic and full of flavour, this food is perfect for springtime.
Here are some top tips for making salads that will have you wanting to eat even more green goodness.
Hooray for herbs!
Lettuce is all well and good, but the right herbs can create a huge boost of flavour that really makes a salad special.
One of the most famous herbs that grows in this country is undoubtedly mint. It has an instantly identifiable flavour that really goes well against sweet ingredients, or alongside a touch of sour.
Though whole mint leaves might be a little chewy in your salad, if you cut them up small you’ll not only help bring out the flavour, but also made them easier to eat. As well as being full of fantastic flavour, mint is linked to having digestive benefits.
Another great salad herb is basil. Very much associated with Italian cooking, this tasty green leaf goes wonderfully with tomatoes, or as an extra leaf to add a twist of flavour to your salad. Like mint, a little will provide a lot of flavour, so experient with the amount that tastes best in a salad.
You’ll find fresh basil and mint can be cultivated as potted plants, which could look lovely in your kitchen, as well as providing you with a supply of fresh leaves. One of the things that you will find in basil is iron, an important mineral.
Some lovely leaves that are in season at present when it comes to the United Kingdom include spinach, which can taste fantastic in a salad, and rocket, which is full of flavour and another brilliant addition.
Seeds can add a crunchy texture to your salad and make it that bit more filling and substantial-feeling.
They might not be associated with spring as such, but pumpkins could have a place in a salad this season. Try a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds over the top of a just-finished salad to make it that little bit more special. You’ll also be adding some extra fibre to your salad because pumpkin seeds contain this.
One sweet treat of the vegetable world that is in season around this time of the year is the vitamin A-rich Bugs Bunny favourite - the carrot.
Great grated and then added to a salad to provide colour, crunch and sweet flavour, carrot is juicy and moreish. It complements sour flavours well.
When you're not adding it to a salad, try making carrots into a juice, either on their own or mixed with other juices. Orange in colour, carrot juice has a unique and very sweet flavour.