WHAT YOU need for the perfect salad is some properly prepared ingredients, chosen for their harmony of color and flavor and put together with an eye to the general ensemble. Start with perky well-dried greens, crisp fresh vegetables and the right dressing, then, if you don't overgarnish, the combination is likely to be as hand søme as it is healthful. You'll eat it because it's good, not merely because it's good for you, and you'll be doing credit to the delicious products of Canadian gardens.
Consider the greens which, as you very well know, are the foundation of every salad. Lettuce is “tops” but by no means the only pebble on the beach. There’s the peppery cress, the delicate graceful endive, the pungent escarole or romaine, the familiar and thrifty cabbage, shredded in the merest slivers for the sake of flavor and easy eating. Use one, two or more of them, but see that each is at its best— clean, crisp and cool. Remember too that they must be dry, for watery greens are the ruination of any salad.
Other vegetables demand and deserve the same loving care. Prepare them according to their variety and nature— cucumbers cubed or cut in wafer-thin slices, tomatoes wedge-shaped or sliced, chives and onions chopped, green pepper diced or slivered, carrots, turnips and beets grated, cauliflower divided into flowerets, and so on.
Arrange your salad just before you serve it, with an eye to its appearance as well as its taste. Resist the sin of dolling it up within an inch of its life, but let the graceful forms and attractive natural color create a picture—or a series of miniatures for individual service.
A salad may be the main course or an accompaniment to it. It may be family
fare or party refreshments, and it’s equally acceptable to the men, women and children who sit at your table.
A good dressing is the other half of the salad story. French dressing, boiled dressing or mayonnaise? They all have their uses and their affinities, so the main thing is to suit your combination with its most agreeable complement. As a general rule French dressing is the perfect touch for a bowl of greens while mayonnaise or the boiled variety does wonders for molded salads as well as many others. But that’s up to you; there’s no hard and fast rule except your own good taste and your sense of the fitness of things.
Every garden green that grows and every colorful vegetable with its distinctive flavor is a potential salad for your bowl. Use them lavishly, blend them skilfully and garnish them sparingly and they can be depended upon to do well by their ultimate consumer.
September Salad Bowl
Wash and prepare all the salad greens and crisp in the refrigerator. Shred the lettuce and spinach, and toss lightly with thinly sliced radishes and French dressing. Heap in a salad bowl, garnish with lettuce and spinach leaves, crisp white cauliflower flowerets and unpeeled, scored sliced cucumbers, and serve at once.
Jellied Cucumber Salad
3 Tablespoon fuis of plain unflavored gelatine 1 Cupful of cold water
1 Can of condensed consommé
1 Can of water
1 Cupful of vinegar Green pepper
1 Medium cucumber, diced (1 cupful approx.)
Mixture of vinegar and oil, well seasoned with salt, chives or chopped onion
Soak the gelatine in the cold water for five minutes. Combine the consommé, water and vinegar, and heat. Then dissolve the soaked gelatine in this hot mixture, stirring until the gelatine is dissolved. Form a pattern with the green pepper in the bottom and around the sides of individual molds. Add the diced cucumber to the liquid and pour into the mold. Chill until firm. Unmold and serve on a bed of watercress or lettuce. Eight to ten servings.
Raisin and Carrot Salad
Cupful of raisins Boiling water Yi Cupful of cider vinegar Y¿ Cupful of granulated sugar
1 Teaspoonful of salt
4 Teaspoonfuls of plain unflavored gelatine
2 Tablespoonfuls of cold water
2 Eggs, beaten
1 Tablespoonful of prepared
2 Teaspoonfuls of prepared
1 Teaspoonful of onion salt
1 Tablespoonful of lemon juice
2 Cupfuls of raw carrot grated
(not too fine)
Y Cupful of sweet pickles, chopped
1 Cupful of mayonnaise
Cover the raisins with the boiling water and let stand for five minutes, then drain well. Mix the vinegar, sugar and salt and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the gelatine which has been soaked in the cold water for five minutes. Pour this mixture while hot over the beaten eggs, stirring well. Add all the other ingredients except the mayonnaise, mix well and cool. When the mixture begins to set, add the mayonnaise and mix. Put into molds and chill. Serve unmolded on salad greens. Six servings.
Tomato Cheese Jelly
‘2 Tablespoonfuls of gelatine
Y Cupful of cold water
2 Cupfuls of tomato juice
1 Small bay leaf
1 Small onion
Y¿ Teaspoonful of salt
Y Teaspoonful of pepper
1 Tablespoon ful of sugar
1 Cupful of grated cheese
Soak the gelatine in the cold water for five minutes. Add the bay leaf, sliced onion, cloves, salt and pepper and sugar to the tomato juice and simmer for five minutes. Add the soaked gelatine, stir until dissolved, and strain. Half fill individual molds with the strained jelly and allow to partly set. Then add one heaping teaspoonful of grated cheese to each mold, fill the molds with the remaining jelly, chill and unmold on lettuce. Serve with mayonnaise. Six servings.
An Unusual Cabbage Salad
2 Cupfuls of cabbage, finely
1 Cupful of diced celery
Y¿ Cupful of chopped peanuts 1 Tablespoonful of chopped pimiento
1 Tablespoonful of chopped green
)/¿ Cupful of boiled dressing or mayonnaise
Combine the ingredients in order, add the dressing and mix thoroughly. Serve in crisp green lettuce cups, and garnish with strips of pimiento. Six servings.
Potato and Bacon Salad
4 Cupfuls of diced cooked potatoes
2 Cupfuls of diced celery
1 Medium-sized onion, chopped 1 Cupful of chopped parsley 1 Tablespoonful of salt 1 Teaspoonful of pepper y Teaspoonful of paprika 1 Cupful of bacon, cut in small squares
1 Cupful of vinegar
Salt herring or sliced cucumbers
Cook the potatoes in their skins, cool, peel and cut in dice. Mix with the diced celery and the chopped onion. Add the parsley, the salt, pepper and paprika and mix well. Cook the bacon until crisp and while it is still hot, add to it the cupful of vinegar. Pour this mixture over the potatoes and serve in a large bowl garnished with salt herring or sliced cucumbers.
Fresh Cauliflower Salad
y¿ Large or 1 small head of cauliflower, uncooked y Cupful of finely chopped green pepper
y Cupful of finely chopped celery
2 Tablespoon fuis of finely
chopped sweet red pepper or pimiento 1 Teaspoonful of salt 1 Cupful of Tomato French Dressing
Crisp lettuce leaves
Slice the cauliflower paper thin so that it will fall apart into tiny pieces. It should measure two to three cupfuls. Mix with the other ingredients and allow to marinate in the refrigerator for several hours. Drain off the surplus dressing and serve on crisp lettuce.
Tomato French Dressing
1 Tiny clove of garlic y Teaspoon ful of salt y Teaspoonful of dry mustard 1 Tablespoonful of confectioner’s sugar
Dash of tabasco sauce y Cupful of vinegar y Cupful of salad or olive oil 1 Cupful of tomato juice
Rub together the first five ingredients in a small bowl until the oil of the garlic has been thoroughly mixed. Add the vinegar and combine well; remove the garlic. Add the remaining ingredients and shake well. This makes a little over one and one-half cupfuls of dressing.
Jellied Autumn Salad
1 Tablespoonful of plain
2 Cupfuls of boiling water 1 Teaspoonful of salt
1 Tablespoonful of lemon juice 1 Teaspoonful of vinegar 1 Cupful of diced cucumbers 1 Cupful of diced onions 1 Cupful of thinly sliced radishes Watercress
Soak the gelatine in cold water for five minutes. Add the boiling water and stir until dissolved. Add the salt, lemon juice and vinegar. When slightly thickened, stir in the cucumbers, onions and radishes. Pour into cold wet molds and chill until set. Unmold on watercress. Eight servings.
Jellied Chicken and Vegetable Salad
2 Tablespoonfuls of plain
unilavored gelatine y Cupful of cold water
3 Cupfuls of hot chicken broth y Teaspoonful of salt
2 Cupfuls of mixed cooked vegetables (peas, carrots, asparagus, beans)
1 Cupful of diced chicken meat 1 Tablespoonful of chopped pimiento
1 Green pepper, minced
Soak the gelatine in the cold water for five minutes. Add the hot broth and stir until the gelatine is dissolved, add the salt and let cool. Pour a thin layer of this mixture into a cold wet mold, and let it stiffen slightly. Add the vegetables, chicken and remaining mixture in alternate layers. Chill until firm. Unmold on lettuce leaves. Six servings.
Cucumber and Grapefruit Salad
1 Package of lemon jelly powder 1 Cupful of boiling water Pinch of salt
y Cupful of grapefruit juice % Cupful of cold water y Cupful of diced cucumber \y Cupfuls of grapefruit pulp
Dissolve the jelly powder in the boiling water, add the salt, fruit juice and cold water. Chill until the mixture thickens, then add the cucumber and grapefruit. Turn into individual molds and chill until firm. Delicious served with mayonnaise on a bed of fresh watercress. Six servings.
Mixed Vegetable Salad
1 Small cauliflower 1 Cupful of cooked carrots, diced—or shredded raw carrots
1 Cupful of cooked peas 6 Stuffed olives, sliced
Wash the cauliflower and separate it into small flowerets. Marinate each vegetable separately in French dressing and allow to stand in the refrigerator. Mix the vegetables and place on crisp lettuce leaves, sprinkle the sliced olives over the top. Serve cold and crisp with mayonnaise or French dressing.
Molded Beet Salad
2 Cupfuls of cooked tiny whole,
or diced large, beets 2 Tablespoonfuls of vinegar 2 Cupfuls of hot water 1 Teaspoon ful of salt
1 Teaspoonful of sugar
2 Tablespoon fuis of grated
1 y Tablespoonfuls of plain unflavored gelatine y Cupful of cold water y Cupful of mayonnaise Lettuce or cress
Combine the beets, hot water, vinegar, salt, sugar and horse-radish and bring to the boiling point. Add the gelatine which has been soaked in the cold water for five minutes and stir until dissolved. Pour into a cold wet mold and chill until firm. Serve unmolded on lettuce or cress. Eight servings.
The story you want is part of the Maclean’s Archives. To access it, log in here or sign up for your free 30-day trial.
Experience anything and everything Maclean's has ever published — over 3,500 issues and 150,000 articles, images and advertisements — since 1905. Browse on your own, or explore our curated collections and timely recommendations.WATCH THIS VIDEO for highlights of everything the Maclean's Archives has to offer.