Pre-packaged salad sucks. I know, because I work in a part of town where the lunch options are neither pretty nor cheap and very rarely healthy. A pre-packaged salad from the grocery store looks sad with its already wilting lettuce, mealy tomatoes, uniformly cubed cheese, and waxy kernels of corn recently freed from a canned prison. And a good-looking salad from that organic café down the street will set you back a whole 10€. So I’ve taken to bringing my own salad to work.
I think we often get stuck in a salad-is-boring state of mind. It’s just lettuce and vegetables. But a finely crafted salad can be as interesting as any other entrée. What about a salad that balances fruits and nuts, pecans and sweet pear with tangy blue cheese – or a salad that substitutes stale bread for lettuce, but is softened with olive oil and feta and tomato. Or what about a salad made from strips of bologna, spiced up with cracked kernels of black pepper and pepperoncini?