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Making green stuff tasty

Honestly, how many lettuce leaves can you eat? I had to learn what to use to give me taste. Sorry TASTE!!!

Looks tempting huh? Not. 

So let’s get on with the recipes. These are not strict recipes to follow to the ounce or gram, these are just my little tricks I discovered with the help of his lordship. He’s an avid cook, not professional but at one time was approached to open up a restaurant in France. Anyway he’s got handy hits on taste. 

Don’t forget, if you’re hungry, then eat more of this green stuff. It’s only for a short time. 

Fresh vs. packets of lettuce

Try and shop for the freshest lettuce, the freshest herbs. Don’t sprinkle herbs either – grab a handful and put them in the lettuce. Be brave! use mint and coriander together perhaps? or add basil?

Look for other leaves you haven’t tried before, like arugula a.k.a rocket or roquette even, watercress, frisee lettuce, radicchio. There are loads of new species around now, some that weren’t around when you were a kid, so be adventurous. They all have different tastes and textures, and make sure they’re fresh, nothing worse than a limp lettuce leaf. 

I knew someone who had a handshake like that once.  

Making salads fast

If you’re like me you haven’t got the patience for chopping or slicing, or the accuracy, you need the right tools so His Lordship introduced me to a mini mandolin.  You can slice up lots of things very quickly to make a crunchy salad

It’s a gadget with a wickedly sharp blade in it, so watch out. Use the sliding implement. But the people at OXO Good Grips have a hand-held version, that’s easy to operate and easy to wash and slices stuff in seconds. Making an interesting salad takes minutes, and in future days, this will be a blessing to you. Just don’t ket the kids get their hands on it. It’s a seriously surgical blade.   

Beyond lettuce

Add some young spinach leaves into a mix for a different texture and a stronger taste. Add red cabbage, which has a sweet taste and a great crunch to it. Just slice it up fine though or else it can be too much of a jaw muscle workout.  

 This website shows you the types of lettuce you can get and perhaps give you some idea. 

Slice the leaves up – I know there’s an argument for tearing as opposed to shopping… But honestly? How much time have you got?  Chop? Tear? who cares, just get the goddam thing cut up so you can get it balanced on a fork.   I have known people that eat their chopped salads with a spoon… Then there are chilling shelves of bags of little leaves – such as pea shoots and mustard cress. I see some chopped chard leaves and kale is making it into the salad aisles now.  

Add more crunchiness with chopped celery and cucumber. Don’t slice the cucumber, it goes floppy – and we hate floppy – chop into half-inch chucks or 15mm chunks for the Euroscale.. Ok – just make them bite sized.   

Fresh peas and edamame are also good to add into the salad.  There’s chicory or endive as well – but go easy, that stuff can be bitter, though its better slow cooked as a roasted vegetable.   

Blanch some asparagus or broccoli or very small florets of cauliflower and tip in you salad bowl. You can make this meal as big as you like. Get a washing up bowl… no seriously.. you could make a big salad bowl of this stuff, keep it in the fridge and keep dipping into it all day.   

“Oh Joy”, I can hear you say… it’s just for three days remember?   

And don’t forget the avocado!!!! That’s your treat in this.   

What about a dressing? 

I don’t like dry salads.   I didn’t at first. But then when I started getting new veggies, new leaves, I kinda wanted to eat them raw to find out what was there real taste before I doused them with anything.   But if you have to have a dressing, you can have one tablespoon of natural yoghurt with chopped garlic, salt and pepper in it. Depending how good your chopping skills are, it might be better to blitz this.    

You can try this with chopped ginger too for a real zing   Or, if you really really have to have an oil, make it the smallest amount you can possibly get away with to – just enhance the salad rather than giving it an oil bath. 

Side effects

You’d want to avoid oil at the beginning of this diet… because … graphically speaking… and apologising in advance… as your internal “tubes” get used to the vegetation,… well .. toilet events change.. things get a little more frequent… solids move er, “often” shall I say… and the last thing you want is oil in the mix. Geddit?   

You’ll want to drink too.   

Just water for now, but you can have coffee in the water, but no milk or cream of course. Of course! Herbal tea too if you can find one with a taste. I tried liquorice tea for a while but I inhaled once before I drank it and it smelt like the cat litter tray, so didn’t go there again.   

Fizzy water with lemon, lime or ginger takes the place of fizzy soda – including zero calorie ones – boy do I have story about artificial sweetners coming for you!! Later.   

And if you need to drink a lot of water, go ahead. We’re cleaning the tubes out, we are Dynorod for three days.  

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