Monday, November 10, 2014

Book Review: Better Homes & Gardens All-Time Favorite Salad Recipes

Title: Better Homes & Gardens All-Time Favorite Salad Recipes
Author: Better Homes & Gardens magazine staff
Date: 1978
Publisher: Meredith Corporation
ISBN: 0-696-01130-1
Length: 96 pages including many color photos
Illustrations: photos, mostly in color
Quote: “If you’re looking for a no-fuss lunch or supper idea, a main dish salad is a natural.”
Of course, this book includes side dish salads, fruit salads, and dressing ripes too.
Actually, it includes more dressing recipes than salad recipes, since every salad recipe includes its own dressing. This focus on the dressing does not appeal to me. I am a salad nudist. I like almost any undressed salad and almost no salad dressing.
If you want to lose weight, reduce fat/carb intake, or encourage children to eat vegetables, I recommend that you become a salad nudist too. The word “salad” originally referred to a dish of vegetables served with salt (usually on or alongside dishes of bread and/or meat) and nothing more. Salad dressing was invented later, to palliate the unpleasant sight and taste of inferior vegetables. Most of us no longer bring brown-spotted, insect-eaten, or moldy vegetables to the table, so we don’t need a lot of expensive, greasy stuff to cover up their yuckiness. Try eating fresh, juicy veggies with just a little salt, maybe a sprinkle of herbs, or lemon or tomato juice. Don’t they taste better when they’re not all sludged up with oil and vinegar? Good-quality vegetables exude enough juice to moisten the bowl with their own delicious “dressing.”
This is, of course, a quibble. Salad nudists can use these recipes, as well as those who actually like salad dressings. No special diet warnings are needed. Most people can enjoy almost any undressed salad—whoever heard of being allergic to lettuce, or of a special diet banning cucumbers? Some of the salad recipes call for meat, cheese, egg, and other things some people can’t eat, but it’s salad; you can leave (or pick) those things out if you want to.

Better Homes & Gardens’ All-Time Favorite Salad Recipes is recommended to any cook who needs inspiration to offer friends and family a variety of salads.