Salads are not just meant to be eaten when on a diet. They can be had as a full meal too. And honestly, not all salads are boring and tasteless. So, here are 14 most popular salads around the world that are more than just lettuce.
1. Caprese Salad
It is an Italian Salad prepared with mozzarella, tomatoes, and sweet basil. The green, white, and red color in the salad actually feature the color of the Italian flag. The name of the salad comes from the Island of Capri where it originated. The original Caprese salad recipe also does not call for balsamic or any other form of vinegar, as opposed to common belief.
2. Cobb Salad
It is an invention of a chef named Robert Cobb, thereby the name. Robert owned The Brown Derby restaurant in Los Angeles. He, using the leftover ingredients in the kitchen, created a salad consisted of chicken breast, hard-boiled eggs, tomatoes, avocado, bacon, salad greens, and Roquefort cheese. The restaurant now stands closed but the tradition of Cobb Salad still prevails as a staple part of the American cuisine.
3. Greek Salad
Greek salad, one of the popular salads and also known as horiatiki in Greece, is a national dish whose ingredients are feta cheese, tomatoes, red onions, and cucumber slices. It was a rural recipe since farmers took some raw ingredients to the field and mixed them together. It is served in a small bowl and is present on various Greek tables. It even tastes great with grilled barbecued meat.
4. Olivier Salad
Lucien Olivier, a chef at a renowned Moscow restaurant called L’Hermitage, created the salad in the 1860s. Olivier kept the recipe a secret until he died but an employee is suspected to have robbed the recipe. Olivier salad was historically called mayonnaise game bird, made with gourmet ingredients such as black caviar, capers, duck, and crayfish. The essential ingredients are diced potatoes, tomatoes, bacon, chicken, or ham. This dish is one of the most popular appetizers on Russia’s New Year’s food buffets.
5. Caesar Salad
The name comes from Caesar Cardini, who owned a restaurant in Mexico. On one busy weekend, Cardini runs low on food, and therefore, creates a salad with whatever was leftover in the kitchen. To not disappoint the customers and also to entertain them, he prepared the salad tableside. Even today, the Caesar salad is prepared tableside, tossing the lettuce, eggs, parmesan cheese, and Worcestershire sauce.
Tabbouleh is the national dish of Lebanon made from chopped parsley leaves, olive oil, bulgur wheat, onions, tomatoes, and fresh mint. This evolved from the mountains of Lebanon and Syria, where the Arabs cooked edible herbs in a tabbouleh. The soothing flavors and the bulgur wheat offer a rich source of fibre and calcium making tabbouleh healthy. Tabbouleh is really widely known and therefore it also has its own day, celebrated on the first Saturday of July each year.
Fattoush is a salad made from traditional pita bread. Pita bread is broken into small bits, then toasted, grilled, or fried. This is then mixed with a range of vegetables. The main ingredient in the salad is sumac, which is a spice that is widely used in the Levantine region. It is among the most widely consumed salads in Lebanon, Syria, Israel, Palestine, Jordan, and Iraq. The salad belongs to a category of dishes popularly named fattat, whose key ingredient the stale pita, or any other flat-bread.
8. Gado – Gado
Gado-Gado is an Indonesian variant of a mixed salad. It is typically made up of several fruits, eggs, tempeh, and tofu. Usually, the vegetables are just partially cooked, mixed with a nutty sauce, and finished by adding crispy prawn crackers. The dish is a true symbol of street food in Indonesia that has been prevalent in the Indonesian culture since the 16th century. It originated from Jakarta’s native people but can be seen in any region of Indonesia today.
Fiambre is a unique large salad that was prepared on All Saints’ Day. It hails from Guatemala and is its most popular dish. The salad can be made large including as much as 50 ingredients into it. It has vegetables, meat, eggs, and even pickles. It is famously served in the memory of someone beloved who is now dead. There are many variants to this salad, depending on the key ingredients.
The main two bases of this salad are the meat of any kind and a souring ingredient. This base is wrapped in lettuce and then consumed. The salad is garnished with Khao khoua, which is grounded rice that is toasted. It is said that this was first invented in Yunnan, China, but is now more popular in the Lao cuisine. Therefore, it is called the unofficial dish of Laos. The salad mostly has sticky rice or cucumber as a side.
11. Dressed Herring
It is one of the most unique and popular salads. Herring is a Russian salad that is layered. There are usually three distinctive layers; herring, potatoes, and beetroot. More layers can be added with apples, eggs, and onions. The color red that comes from the beetroot signifies the red flag. When potatoes are used, it signifies the staple food of farmers and laborers. It is a popular dish served as zakuski at New Year and Christmas.
A popular summer salad, Panzanella is an Italian salad. It contains moistened bread, tomatoes, olives, and onions. Pane means bread and zanella means soup bowl. It was invented using unwanted ingredients such as stale bread. Bronzino is a poet who first described the salad in his poem. Until the 20th century, the salad was based only on onions which are evident in Bronzino’s poem praising the onions with oil served with toast.
13. Israeli Salad
It’s potentially Israel’s best known national dish. Usually prepared with olive oil and lemon juice are finely diced tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, parsley, and either bell peppers or chili peppers. This pleasant salad is consumed as a main or a side dish and is also sold as a street food snack, wrapped in falafel or shawarma pita bread. It is very important in an Israeli breakfast.
Kosambari is Karnataka’s most popular salad. The salad is made with split legumes such as Bengal gram and green gram and flavored with mustard seeds in addition. It is well recognized for its simplicity of preparation and its high protein count. At most festivities, and celebrations it is traditional as an appetizer, while in most temples it is offered as a religious offering. Kosambari is also additionally seasoned with slices of cucumber or rice, and while typically eaten as an appetizer, it is often a balanced main meal or a snack.
Ending this article about popular salads with a salad joke. We don’t have any vegetable jokes yet, so if you do lettuce know!