I was never that into salads, and as a vegetarian this usually shocks people.
“bUt WhAt dO yOu eAt?”
I recently came to the realization that my disinterest in salad, stems from 2 things.
- Most restaurants only offer 1 type of vegetarian salad, and who wants to spend $12.00 on a garden salad with browning romaine lettuce, and Kraft ranch dressing? Especially when everyone else at your table is eating things that aren’t garden salad!?! Uh, no thanks. I’ll have a poutine plz, extra gravy.
- When I made salads at home I always made them too complicated. I would use some of every vegetable I had on hand, add some nuts, or seeds….. By the time everything was washed, chopped, shredded and tossed I would have more salad than I could eat in one meal (So. Much. Chewing.), the kitchen would be a mess and I would need a nap.
For the last couple of months, I have been doing a loose version of the Auto Immune Protocol, or AIP, which is a very strict elimination diet used by many people with autoimmune diseases (shout out to my Hashi’s fam). If you want to go down that rabbit hole, check out Dr Sarah Ballantyne’s blog here. It’s impossible to do properly as a vegetarian but like I said, I adapted it the best I could and that means I have been eating A LOT of veggies. Like, an absolute fuckton of vegetables.
On days when I am busy and need to grab something to eat but don’t want to get into making a whole meal, I’ve been blending up a mango smoothie or throwing together a simple salad with whatever I’m allowed to eat, as per the AIP diet.
Having less ingredients to work with has forced me to find new ways of making 3 or 4 things as yummy as possible and it has taken a lot of the work out of eating. My current go to salad is some greens, cucumber and green onion, with a boiled egg and some grape seed oil, salt, pepper and thyme on top. Assuming you already have the eggs cooked, it takes 5 mins to throw together. Before I added eggs back into my diet, I was using roasted cauliflower to give it a different texture and flavour.
I’m noticing in many areas of my life, that I tend to over-complicate things and make them harder than they need to be. Salad was one of those things. If not putting shredded carrot in my salad makes it quicker to prepare and saves me from washing a peeler and shredder, then fuck carrots. Who needs em? Instead of eating a less nutritious snack because salad felt overwhelming, I am now throwing together a simple salad and getting on with my day.
If you want to become a reformed salad avoider like me, try tossing together a couple of your favorite raw veggies with some greens and a little oil and salt. If that doesn’t get the job done, don’t worry. There’s always poutine to fall back on.