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Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007, 11:10 am

Hmmm... this community is kind of quiet, but maybe enough people are paying attention that you can still give me some good advice. I keep getting salad mix in my boxes, and I am so tired of salad.... With the weather changing I find myself seeking out more comfort foods and cold salad just doesn't appeal so much anymore.

I've done the warm goat cheese idea (extremely delicious, but goat cheese is so expensive here!) and tried throwing in things like chicken and almonds, but I feel like I'm out of ideas. Can anyone suggest something interesting to do with salad mix? Maybe something to make it feel a little more substantial?

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 06:16 pm (UTC)

Layer with sandwich makings between bread.
Try wilting it a bit with a hot item like sauteed lentils and onions...

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 08:41 pm (UTC)

Dur... I can't believe the sandwich idea didn't occur to me. Fabulous!

And would most greens wilt in a satisfactory manner, you think? There's a bunch of stuff in the mix bag that I honestly cannot identify, so I'm nervous about trying to cook it.

Wed, Oct. 31st, 2007 04:58 pm (UTC)

Hey, what have you got to lose besides boredom? Go for it!

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 06:23 pm (UTC)

When you say "salad mix", do you mean a bag of stuff like rocket and mustard and things? I rip it up into small pieces and throw it into hot spicy tomatoey things, and it adds some good flavour. Personally I can't stand things like rocket in salads, so all my salad mix goes into the pot!

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 09:00 pm (UTC)

Yeah, it's a mix of all sorts of random stuff. Most of it I can't identify. I searched the distributor's website to see if they had a better description of what's in it, but all it really said was "While arugula, chervil, endive, and lettuce are the classic mesclun ingredients, anything goes nowadays."

I didn't actually like it much as salad frankly, so I think I'll take your suggestions to heart. I like the idea of putting it in tomatoey things. I sadly can't eat spicy food much, but I like the idea of a tomato sauce with greens in it. Yum. Thanks! :)

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 06:24 pm (UTC)

This pasta made with mesclun sounds good: http://www.oldshawfarm.com/archives/000775.html. I saw something similar on foodtv but can't seem to find it on their web site.

Could you use a less expensive kind of cheese (mozzarella?) but still bread it or crust it with nuts and fry it?

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 09:04 pm (UTC)

Ooh, that pasta sounds fabulous. I didn't realize until a little bit ago that salad mix == mesclun. Now I have a better idea what to google, too.

I could try using another cheese, but the nice thing about goat cheese when it gets warm is that it still falls apart, so it can be distributed throughout the salad. I fear that mozzarella would just stick together in a big clump. I wonder if warmed up ricotta would be good... it wouldn't clump like goat cheese, so it would be hard to bread it and fry it, but it would still be warm and cheesy... hmm.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 09:07 pm (UTC)

You could always add some egg or breadcrumbs to the ricotta before frying it.

That actually sounds pretty good to me.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 09:26 pm (UTC)

Yeah, something to hold it together? Grand idea. I shall try it! :D Yum.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 10:20 pm (UTC)

It is the best frying thing EVAR
Good enough to make me type like a lolcat.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 10:21 pm (UTC)

And in fact forget how to spell it too. *hides face*

Wed, Oct. 31st, 2007 12:47 am (UTC)

Would you believe it... I don't think I've ever HAD Camembert. And I lived in France for five years! For shame!!

Fries up nicely, eh? I think I have to try that.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 06:26 pm (UTC)

I toss some greens on the plate with hot fish/poultry, or into pasta just before serving, so they're lightly wilted.

When it's colder out, I find I still like salad if there's a bit more substance to it, so not only chicken and mango and tomatoes with a basil-y dressing over the greens, but also garlic croutons. Or bits of sauteed sweet potato, or some other starchy bits.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 09:06 pm (UTC)

Do you find that most greens hold up to being wilted nicely? I can't identify most of what is in this mix so I wasn't sure if it would wilt well.

Mmm, your salad ideas sound lovely. That's definitely heartier. I think the addition of a more basic starch would make it more substantial. Thanks! :)

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 10:08 pm (UTC)

Straight lettuces I'd be a bit wary of wilting much, but things like arugula, spinach, mizuna, baby bok choi, and so on are fine.

(In the autumn I'm all about the starches :-) Other nice starches could be cubed winter squash, wedges of boiled potatoes, barley, other cooked grains, beans, and so on.)

Wed, Oct. 31st, 2007 12:49 am (UTC)

I think I will go for it, because they mostly look more like spinach and arugula type things. If it turns out weird, at least I'll have learned something! Besides, there's a ton of it, so I'll have plenty more to do something else with if it doesn't work.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 09:10 pm (UTC)

on the cheese note, haloumi, fried in a pan (yes) and then mixed with greens and some tahini and lemon juice and some pumpkin seeds is yummy- i used to get that from a restaurant near us loads.

for substantial salads, why not add some pulses- a half can of chickpeas (fling the rest into some soup or blitz with garlic for yummy hummous) or some lentils, or some flageolot of borlotti beans out of a tin, maybe with some cream? Perhaps on toast?

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 09:31 pm (UTC)

Hm, you know, I haven't looked at haloumi here in the shops. I wonder what the prices are like. I'll have to try that. It sounds good, especially with the addition of pumpkin seeds.... yum! For some reason, in my town, cheese of all sorts seems absurdly expensive. There's no good reason for it as far as I can tell, but it's the case. Very annoying.

I have not historically been a fan of beans and their ilk (something about the texture) but, hey, I hated onions until about a month ago and now I can't get enough of them, so I should try that. And the way you described everything makes it sound so good. Thank you! Very nice ideas.

Tue, Oct. 30th, 2007 10:08 pm (UTC)

The other suggestions here are great, but if you did want to stick to salads, I like doing a warm salad with griddled aubergine (eggplant) and/or large flat mushrooms cooked under the grill with olive oil and garlic. Yummy!

Wed, Oct. 31st, 2007 12:45 am (UTC)

Oh hey, I got some lovely big flat mushrooms in the same box. That would be fabulous. And maybe I could try throwing some grilled squash in too, as there was some of that as well. Maybe the salad idea is salvageable after all! :D Thank you!