Wedge Salad is a typical salad served at classic American steak houses as a starter to your meal. It’s traditionally served with crumbled blue cheese and blue cheese dressing, but blue cheese isn’t one of my kids’ favorite cheeses. I love wedge salad, though, so here’s a version I make for them without any blue cheese in it. If you find you’re really missing the blue cheese flavor, go ahead and sprinkle some crumbled blue cheese on your salad. It’s all good!
(Makes 4 servings)
1 small head iceberg lettuce
6 slices of bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 slices sturdy white bread, crusts removed
3 Tbsp. butter or margarine
garlic salt, to taste (optional)
1 small tomato, chopped
1/4 small red onion, very thinly sliced
chives, minced (for garnish)
Cut the lettuce into 4 wedges and place them in the refrigerator to keep cold until ready to use.
Fry the bacon until crisp, then transfer to paper towels to drain.
Dice the white bread into small cubes, a little less than a half-inch big.
Melt butter or margarine in a skillet and fry bread cubes, stirring often, until golden and crispy.
Season bread cubes with garlic salt to taste, if desired.
Assemble the salad by placing one wedge of lettuce on each of 4 salad plates.
Pour some dressing over each wedge.
Top with a little tomato, onion, bacon, and croutons.
Garnish with minced chives, if desired.
BACON BUTTERMILK DRESSING
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
4 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
Place all ingredients into bowl of a food processor and process until combined.
Chill until ready to serve.
NOTE: Dressing can be made up to 2 days in advance and kept chilled in the fridge.
This is a healthy and delicious salad. The dressing has very little oil which makes it less fattening than other dressings, albeit rather thin. If you want a thicker, creamier dressing, try adding a half cup of plain greek yogurt.
Sometimes I add crumbled bacon to this salad which makes it really yummy. After all, everything is better with bacon, right? For a heartier, more filling salad, you could toss in some chopped grilled chicken.
This salad makes a great accompaniment to barbecued meat or chicken. It’s delicious alongside a pot of pulled pork or a smoked beef brisket. And it’s perfect to take to a potluck or a picnic.
SANTA FE CHOPPED SALAD
1 large head romaine lettuce or 2 romaine hearts, washed and roughly chopped
2 small (2.25 oz.) cans sliced black olives, drained
A friend of mine told me that she read somewhere that the way to keep your coleslaw salad from becoming runny and water-logged is to toss your shredded cabbage in a colander with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/4 cup salt, and let it sit for about 5 minutes. This is supposed to draw the excess moisture from the cabbage. Then you give it a really good rinse under cold running water and spin it in a salad spinner to dry well. The cabbage stays nice and crisp and the salad doesn’t end up swimming in a bowl of soupy dressing.
Sounds totally plausible, doesn’t it? So I decided to give it the old college try. Well, all I can say is…….. don’t go off and start doing something else so you forget about your cabbage and it ends up sitting in the sugar/salt mix for about 40 minutes instead of the 5 it was supposed to…….. not unless you want to end up with a colander of limp, shrunken, gray-green little strings. Yikes! Anyway, if someone else out there tries it and it works, you’ll have to tell me all about it. Then maybe I’ll try it again. For now, I’m sticking to making coleslaw the old-fashioned way.
½ head green cabbage, sliced thin
½ head red cabbage, sliced thin
2 medium carrots, peeled and julienned
1 cup mayonnaise
3 Tbsp. cider vinegar
3 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. celery salt
½ tsp. pepper
2-3 green onions, chopped (optional)
Place shredded cabbage and carrots into a salad bowl. If you’re short on time, you can substitute 2 (16-oz.) bags pre-shredded coleslaw mix.
Whisk remaining ingredients together in another bowl.
Pour dressing over the cabbage, tossing to combine well.
Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.
NOTE: If you don’t like red cabbage, you can omit it and use one whole head of green cabbage instead. Also, if you don’t have celery salt, you could substitute 1 tsp. salt plus ½ tsp. celery seeds in its place.