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Common Errors That Spoil Your Salads

Summer is the perfect season to have a fresh salad for lunch.

If you like salads, but you think that the one you prepare at home is not as good as the one you eat at the restaurants, it is possible that you make one, or more, of the following errors:

1 - It is important to carefully wash the salad, but after that you have to dry the salad before seasoning it.

The best is to use a manual salad spinner.

If you do not have one, put the wet salad in a clean dry towel and pat dry.

2 - To correctly season a salad, you have to sprinkle it with salt first, then mix in the other ingredients.

If you use oil and vinegar, add the vinegar first and the oil after. The correct proportion 1 tablespoon of vinegar and 2 of olive oil.

3 - Use the right dressing.

You can add mustard, hot sauce or whatever you like to your salad dressing, but remember not to use strong flavors on delicate leaves.

Do you like salads?

Which is your favorite?

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LoudMan wrote on June 27, 2014, 9:32 AM

Good tips which a lot of otherwise great cooks might miss. I've a feeling I'd be able to eat a meal you fixed without a single second-thought.

LoudMan wrote on June 27, 2014, 9:33 AM

And, in answer to your question, I have no one favorite salad. I'm just hungry. I could eat anything that doesn't eat me first.

poddys wrote on June 27, 2014, 10:01 AM

Good tips, especially the vinegar before the oil. I try to not put any extra salt on my salads, the dressing and any cheese or olives usually provide enough as it is. I love lots of different veggies in my salads, and my favorite dressing is currently a ginger and sesame one.

ohcaroline wrote on June 27, 2014, 10:05 AM

I never thought about those errors before, except the drying the salad part. Good post information.

SandraLynn wrote on June 27, 2014, 10:18 AM

Goodness gracious, salad is one of my most favorite things, I don't have a favorite favorite - I love lots of salads. And these are great tips, thank you for sharing. When is lunch? Or Dinner? ;) But seriously. :)

GemOfAGirl wrote on June 27, 2014, 11:31 PM

I grew up watching my mom use a metal knife to cut the lettuce. It wasn't until I was an adult that I'd heard that that was what was causing the lettuce to turn brown so quickly. When I make a salad, I always shred the lettuce with my bare hands now (after I've washed them, of course.)

LadyDuck wrote on June 28, 2014, 4:20 AM

Ginger and sesame oil seems a very good dressing. When I prepare my oil and vinegar salad, to make this "perfect", I take a small bowl, add the salt, then the vinegar and finally the olive oil. I whisk carefully and then I pour on my salad. This is the best professional method to season a salad.

LadyDuck wrote on June 28, 2014, 4:21 AM

If the salad is too wet the seasoning tastes "watery".

LadyDuck wrote on June 28, 2014, 4:22 AM

My husband cannot live without "his salad", he eats salads every day. Lunch is in 2 hours ;)

LadyDuck wrote on June 28, 2014, 4:22 AM

So true, you should never use a knife to cut many kind of salads, especially lettuce.

NicoleL5822 wrote on June 28, 2014, 12:53 PM

I love salad, I think too much. Especially in the summer when it's hot like now.

AbbyBiha wrote on June 28, 2014, 8:21 PM

I don't have a favourite for any type of salad as I love them all. Thank you sharing the useful tips as my mistake is always not making them dry enough before adding the other dressing.

LadyDuck wrote on June 29, 2014, 2:05 AM

I also love to serve salads in summer, even if this year the weather is not kind with us. It rained all the month of June.

LadyDuck wrote on June 29, 2014, 2:06 AM

My husband loves any kind of salad and he want a salad with every meal, he is very upset if it's not prepared as he expects. I bought a salad spinner years ago and I always use it.

PenFlavor wrote on June 29, 2014, 6:56 AM

I learned a new trick; vinegar before oil. emoticon :smile:

LadyDuck wrote on June 29, 2014, 9:01 AM

There is a reason, vinegar helps to dissolve the salt :)

LadyDuck wrote on July 1, 2014, 1:13 AM

I am also Italian and I do the same, I mix salt and vinegar in a container then I pour oil and shake well, my husband is a salads fan and he wants them correctly seasoned.

DorothyGale wrote on July 1, 2014, 7:36 PM

We aren't typically salad eaters, but maybe it's as you say ... we make mistakes in making it. There's an antipasto salad at a local pizza place that we love, and yet we never seem able to duplicate it.

margielynn wrote on July 10, 2014, 11:36 AM

These are great tips I did not know ladyduck I will remember them next time when making my salads!

Randajad_The_Traveller wrote on July 10, 2014, 1:46 PM

if there is mayo or ranch dressing, I cant stomach vinaigrette even though it is the healthier dressing. Thats the reason why I am not a raw vegan.

MarshaMusselman wrote on July 11, 2014, 11:44 AM

I eat a lot of salads at home usually unless I've run out of the ingredients. I purchase pre-cut salad mixes sold by Dole mostly. They come with carrots and red cabbage in the bag. There are choices of iceberg lettuce, romaine, and other greens too. It's all pre washed, so I don't have to bother with that unless I buy fresh greens, which I don't do that often. I keep it simple by using ready-made dressings usually by Kraft.

VASS wrote on July 11, 2014, 4:07 PM

I love all kinds of salads and I like them sour, so I add two parts vinegar to one part olive oil.

LadyDuck wrote on July 13, 2014, 1:46 AM

Everything is in the sauce but also the freshness of the salad is important.

LadyDuck wrote on July 13, 2014, 1:47 AM

Thanks for your kind comment.

LadyDuck wrote on July 13, 2014, 1:48 AM

I do not know how American dressing are made. We make a dressing with mayo, but here in Europe is called "French dressing".

LadyDuck wrote on July 13, 2014, 1:49 AM

I pick the salad fresh from my garden and I never use ready made dressing, there is always something inside that my husband cannot eat.

LadyDuck wrote on July 13, 2014, 1:50 AM

My niece do the same, she loves vinegar. Sometimes I prepare a salad with only (real) balsamic vinegar.

AdrienneJenkins wrote on July 14, 2014, 10:30 AM

Summer time I'm all about the big salad.

LadyDuck wrote on July 15, 2014, 2:52 AM

Even if the temperature is still cool, we are eating salads every day.

Ruby3881 wrote on August 3, 2014, 3:21 PM

I try to tear the lettuce up by hand too. I loved having a good supply of fresh greens in my garden. I'd pick just the leaves I needed, right before the meal, and float them in a sink of water before I scooped them out and patted them dry. You have to do them just a few leaves at a time. It's a little more work, but the reward of a garden fresh salad is worth it :)

VinceSummers wrote on January 2, 2015, 10:23 AM

I'm not a huge fan of vinegar. I can't stand sour. I like something closer to Greek-style. Spinach, not lettuce. Purple olives. Feta. Grape tomatoes. Egg slices. Bacon bits. Olive oil.

LadyDuck wrote on January 2, 2015, 10:32 AM

I love Greek-style salads only seasoned with olive oil. Being Italian I love Mediterranean cuisine.

arthurchappell wrote on January 5, 2015, 11:30 AM

I love good salads - I just find people produce the same basic salad over and over with no variation or change in ingredients and way too much lettuce

Quinbe wrote on January 8, 2015, 5:56 AM

I like to make my own salad dressing with extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar with fig extraction, salt and pepper, Italian herbs and a dash of lemon juice . all the others give me a pain in the tummy - so salad dressings no matter what the salad be, except Waldorf Salad, has the same dressing in my home.