By Brent T. Frei 2014-06-12 07:41:58
Although a millennia-old dish, salad today is spinning new delight wherever it’s offered throughout the foodservice industry—especially in school nutrition operations. Back in 2011, when People magazine featured Vino Mitra, food and nutrition director of Oceanside (Calif.) Unified School District (OUSD), as a winner in a recent competition lauding vegetarian-based school menus, the two-page article had space for only one recipe and an accompanying photo of the dish. Of the wide array of OUSD’s healthy menu items, People editors picked its Lean and Green Couscous Salad to illustrate Mitra’s award-winning achievement. The fact that this couscous salad was included on his operation’s elementary school menus may not be considered startling news in the K-12 foodservice community today. But it certainly was considered unusual by readers of the general consumer press back then (and, as negative press continues to attract more attention than positive improvements, it probably still would be a surprise for many People readers today). That salad—featuring couscous cooked in vegetable broth that, when cooled and fluffed up, is tossed with olive oil, feta cheese, diced tomato, dried cranberries, chopped black olives, chopped parsley, a little kosher salt and cracked black pepper—remains in OUSD’s four-week menu cycle today. (Check it out online at www.schoolnutrition.org/snmagazinebonuscontent.) People could have focused its spotlight on the district’s soy- and vegetable-based “chik ‘n’ tenders,” turkey hot dogs or bean dishes that Mitra and his team offered to district students. But perhaps the editors anticipated the advent of the salad days that Americans young and old currently savor. Indeed, a salad of some stripe seems to be de rigeur at K-12 operations all across the nation in 2014. Why? Thank the federal government’s renewed emphasis on building interest in fresh vegetables (including the cruciferous kind like kale and broccoli), fruits and whole grains, coupled with the explosion of newly craveable lettuces beyond iceberg. Plus, there is the trend toward promoting farm-to-school procurement, not to mention increasing interest in so-called “flexitarianism” (Meatless Mondays, anyone?) and never-before-seen food marketing that currently demonizes gluten. Today, salad is basking in a “perfect storm” of popularity, not only in K-12 school nutrition programs, but in all other U.S. foodservice industry segments, as well. A case in point is Arlington (Mass.) Public Schools, which embraces salad in all its diversity at its seven elementary schools, a middle school and a comprehensive high school in a northwestern suburb of Boston. The elementary school menu includes egg salad on pita served with a tossed garden salad and a 100% juice parfait, plus tuna salad on wheat served with a Caesar salad and celery sticks with hummus dip. Quinoa salad is a side dish for an oven-baked breaded chicken on a whole-grain roll, and a three-bean salad and fresh grapes buddy up to a meatball sub on whole grain. Black bean and corn salad says “Mexican” when it is served with whole-grain nacho chips with taco meat and cheese. Diverse, indeed! Whole-grain pizza, served weekly at Arlington elementary schools, always comes with salad, be it a tomato-and-cucumber salad, a Caesar salad, fresh broccoli salad or a spinach salad, each with a fruit accompaniment. A leafy green-based salad, which changes weekly, is offered daily as an alternate on elementary menus; each comes with a whole-wheat pita. One week might be antipasto garden salad, followed in ensuing weeks by chicken Caesar salad, a chef’s salad or Oriental chicken salad. Arlington’s high school boasts a salad bar as a daily option, and both it and the middle school offer grab ‘n’ go a la carte salads. On top of those, salad still appears on the serving line as a side dish offering, ranging from the popular tomato-and-cucumber salad, a tomato and black bean salad or fresh veggie pasta salad. Salad Toppers The word “salad” comes from the French salade, which derived from the Latin salata (salty), from sal (salt). Salt has this historic association with salad, because greens and other vegetables typically were seasoned with brine or salty oil-and-vinegar dressings during Roman times. In English, the word first appears as “salad” or “sallet” in the 14th century. Mixed greens salads grew in popularity in the United States in the late 19th century. “Salad days” is an idiomatic expression referring to a youthful time accompanied by the enthusiasm, idealism and innocence that one associates with a young person. The first recorded use of the term was in 1606 when William Shakespeare wrote Antony and Cleopatra. Cleopatra says,“... My salad days, / When I was green in judgment ... .” But the term also is fitting to describe the very current mania with which Americans are gravitating toward salads—and greens—these days. There’s no ignoring the fact that salad is enjoying its day in the sun, not only with adults, but with younger customers, too. Y-Pulse, which provides insights on kids and their food choices, recently surveyed 500 consumers ages 8-13 about their decision factors in making food and beverage choices away from home. According to the survey, 12% consider salad one of their top three favorite things to eat at school, 6% name salad one of their top three favorite meals to eat at a restaurant and 19% say salad is their favorite item on a restaurant’s targeted kids’ menu. “They might be young, but they are restaurant savvy, more educated than any previous generation on nutrition and are very involved in their family’s decisions to dine out,” says Y-Pulse’s Sharon Olson. As a menu item in 2014, salad—for kids and in general—also fares well among chefs, according to the annual What’s Hot survey of members of the American Culinary Federation, commissioned by the National Restaurant Association (NRA). Last autumn, the survey asked nearly 1,300 chefs to rate 209 ingredients, dishes, cuisines, preparation methods and culinary themes as either a “hot trend,” “yesterday’s news” or “perennial favorite” with customers this year. The results rank each item’s “hot trend” worthiness. Children’s entrée salads rank 71st overall, dropping 11 places from 2013, which suggests entrée salads for kids are less popular this year than last year—or simply that there are other trendier items gaining attention, because among all kids’ meal options, entrée salads increased, from ninth to eighth, with 70% of respondents saying children’s entrée salads are either a hot trend or a perennial favorite in 2014. Likewise, entrée salads in general also fell 11 places in “hotness” this year over last year, but among all main dishes and entrées, they increased by one place, from 29th to 28th—even winning out over comfort foods (30th), featuring chicken pot pie, meatloaf and roasted chicken. A whopping 70% of chefs surveyed consider entrée salads either hot or a favorite among customers in 2014. Chefs rated warm and cold appetizer salads and chopped salads as slightly less popular among American diners this year over last year. Indeed, traditional and classic salads lost ground in the NRA’s What’s Hot survey this year. But for a splash of perspective, while fewer customers might order a Greek salad these days, that says less about the overall popularity of salad and more about the newly crowned king of lettuces making an appearance in a salad bowl near you: kale. “Kale salads” as a singular entity appeared on the NRA survey for the first time in 2014, eliciting a “hot” ranking among 59% of chef respondents and earning 50th place among 209 items. (An additional 12% of respondents consider kale salads a perennial favorite.) “Dark greens,” which include kale along with mustard and collard greens, made a huge leap in 2014, from 78th place overall to 38th. In fact, 61% of survey respondents believe dark greens are hot this year, and 27% consider them a perennial favorite. (Only 12% dub dark greens “yesterday’s news.”) And we know that much of those dark greens end up in salads. On Trend, Everywhere It’s Wednesday at Mt. Pleasant (Pa.) Area School District (MPASD), a community in the foothills southeast of Pittsburgh, and Joe Beaman, foodservices director, leaves his suit on its hanger and instead dons a white chef’s coat and toque to showcase his status as a professional chef. On “Wellness Wednesdays,” a program now in its second year, Beaman travels to one of the district’s elementary schools. He sets up a table in the cafeteria with food samples in 2- or 4-oz. cups and slips on disposable gloves. He looks forward to interacting with his young customers, continually trying to get them to try something new. “My goal is always 90%,” Beaman says, referring to his hope that the vast majority of students will sample whatever he’s promoting that particular day. Those who do so earn a colorful “Chef Basil” sticker, highlighting their curiosity (and, sometimes, bravery) in putting their taste buds to the test. Items that appeal to the youngsters eventually find their way into the menu cycle, and these have included such salad successes as spinach/pasta salad, a lima bean salad with mushrooms and a sweet-and-sour two-bean salad. But one of the district’s greatest Wellness Wednesday achievements is a salad that also is proving popular in other schools across the nation: a simple cucumber-and-tomato salad. Indeed, this salad variation is in such demand by students in MPASD elementary schools that it now contains chickpeas to bump up legume consumption. Looking beyond K-12 schools, salad is spinning excitement in all foodservice segments. “Investments in serving healthy food—with an emphasis on leafy green and grain salads—finally are paying off as a niche market rolls into the mainstream,” explains Michael Whiteman, president of Baum + Whiteman, LLC, a food and restaurant consulting company. “More than one factor propels this profound market change: the gluten rejecters, Paleo people, diabetics, weight challenged, vegetarians, vegans … and two decades of hectoring by nutritionists, food Nazis and, perhaps, the First Lady,” Whiteman asserts. Another type of salad consumers might see in restaurants is the “shaker salad.” Though the shaker salad concept isn’t new, it is not necessarily ubiquitous. The concept’s shelf life was short when introduced by McDonald’s in 1999. Consisting of lettuce and other ingredients with dressing served in a tall, clear, plastic cup that the customer shook to mix the components, the offering was impossible to consume by the 19% of all Americans who eat while driving. Chicago-based Hyatt Corporation has had much greater success offering a salad “experience” to its younger customers. The menu for the hotel company’s “For Kids By Kids” program, which provides more nutritious, fresh and interactive offerings for the 3 million children served annually in all full-service Hyatt hotels and resorts throughout the United States, Canada and the Caribbean, is grounded in Hyatt’s philosophy, “Food. Thoughtfully Sourced. Carefully Served.” The “For Kids By Kids” menu includes a Shaken Chopped Salad with roasted chicken, vegetables, brown rice and yogurt basil dressing, served in a lightweight green, plastic sphere. Even vending is getting into the salad act. According to Abbie Westra, editor of Convenience Store Products magazine, a new company, Farmer’s Fridge, which launched its first fresh food vending machine last November in Chicago, offers a variety of fresh salads and add-ons, such as chicken, lemon tofu and tuna salad, along with such healthful snacks as sliced vegetables with hummus. Food items are prepared each morning in an off-site kitchen and packaged in plastic containers, which can be returned for recycling through a slot on the machine. Dressed to Thrill Regardless of whether a consumer enjoying a salad is a kid at school or an adult in a quick-serve restaurant, the dressing can be as important a salad component as the produce and any other ingredients. Indeed, the use of dressing on salads dates back pretty far, as the Romans and ancient Greeks ate mixed greens with a dressing. Mary, Queen of Scots is said to have enjoyed boiled celery root over greens covered with a creamy mustard dressing. Last October, the Association for Dressings & Sauces (ADS) named its 12th annual Dressing of the Year Award winner: Three Peppercorn Asiago Dressing from Bay Valley Foods. The award is presented by ADS to recognize and celebrate truly innovative and delicious dressing products. Bay Valley Foods previously received the ADS Dressing of the Year Award in 2010 for its La Maison Organic Lemon Ginger Sesame Dressing. Still, ranch flavor remains the Swiss Army knife of salad dressings. It dresses salads, gets kids to eat their vegetables and adds oomph as an ingredient—all reasons why it is the top ready-to-use dressing flavor shipped to foodservice outlets, reports trend tracker The NPD Group. Indeed, ranch leads the ready-to-use salad dressing category, holding double the share of dollars and units shipped than blue cheese dressing at the No. 2 spot. In addition, ranch dressing sales are growing in an otherwise flat category. Dollar sales volume of ranch-flavored salad dressing shipped through broadline foodservice distributors to total foodservice outlets was up 3%, while total salad dressing dollar sales were flat in the year ending December 2013 compared to the year before, according to NPD’s SupplyTrack®. Ranch chipotle salad dressing, a blending of two popular flavors, netted double-digit gains in dollars and units shipped. “Salad dressing is a good example of how a staple item can extend beyond its traditional use,” says Annie Roberts, vice president of NPD SupplyTrack. “Ranch dressing has become a mainstay not just for salads, but also for wings and other dishes, as well.” Other double-digit dressing flavor gainers were honey Dijon, Asian peanut and several vinaigrette flavors. Green Goddess dressing, a creamy flavor that has been around since the 1920s but only recently become more available for foodservice operations, tripled in unit and dollar volumes shipped last year. Step It Up With Salads Feeling inspired to ramp up some of your operation’s salad offerings? The recipes shown throughout this article might provide you with some serving ideas or a jumping-off point for menu brainstorming with your team. Keep in mind that salads also might be a good fit for your supper program, adult meals or catering needs. Regardless of the age of the customer eating a salad or the time of day it’s being consumed, one thing seems clear—salad days are here to stay! HARVEST CRANBERRY PASTA SALAD WITH VEGGIES YIELD: 48 servings PER SERVING: 126 cal., 2 g pro., 20 g carb., 3 g fiber, 4 g fat, 1 g sat. fat, 0 mg chol., 296 mg sod., 1 mg iron, 25 mg ca. DRESSING INGREDIENTS* Balsamic dressing, prepared—3 cups Mustard, Honey Dijon —1⁄4 cup SALAD INGREDIENTS Pasta, short (fusilli, penne)—3 lbs. dry or 6 qts. cooked Broccoli florets, blanched—1 lb., 14 ozs. or 1 1⁄2 qts. Carrots—2 lbs., 10 ozs. or 1 1⁄2 qts. Cranberries, dried, sweetened—15 ozs. or 3 cups Scallions—5 ozs. or 2 1⁄2 cups Dressing—3 cups DIRECTIONS 1. Dice the carrots. Mince the scallions. 2. In a bowl, whisk together the balsamic dressing and mustard until smooth. Place in a covered container and refrigerate until ready to use. Bring to room temperature before using as directed. 3. Cook the pasta according to the package directions until just tender. Remove from hot water and drain well. Hold. 4. In a full-size, deep steamtable pan, combine the pasta, broccoli, carrots, dried cranberries and scallions. Toss gently to combine. 5. Stir in the dressing and toss to coat evenly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. 6. To serve: Portion 3⁄4 cup salad as a side dish. Photo, recipe & recipe analysis: Cranberry Marketing Committee USA, www.uscranberries.com *Notes: The recipe for the salad dressing yields a total of 3 cups. To serve this recipe as an entrée salad, top the pasta with grilled chicken or turkey. According to the organization that provided this recipe, one 3⁄4 cup serving provides 1 oz. grain equivalent, 1⁄8 cup fruit, 1⁄8 red/orange vegetables and 1⁄8 cup dark green vegetables. If serving as part of the reimbursable meal, adjust the serving size as necessary to meet current meal pattern requirements. TACO SALAD YIELD: 100 servings PER SERVING*: 326 cal., 10 g sat. fat, 452 mg sod. SALAD INGREDIENTS Romaine lettuce—9 3⁄4 lbs. Spinach, fresh—3 1⁄2 lbs. Tomatoes, fresh—12 1⁄2 cups or 5 3⁄4 lbs. Kidney beans, red—25 cups or 2 1⁄2 No. 10 cans Cheddar cheese—13 cups or 3 1⁄4 lbs. Corn tortilla chips—6 3⁄4 lbs. or ~1,300 whole chips Ground beef, raw, 80% lean—4 1⁄4 lbs. Taco seasoning—1⁄4 lb. Water—8 cups Salsa—12 cups or ~106 ozs. SALSA INGREDIENTS* Tomatoes, canned, diced—24 1⁄2 cups or 2 No. 10 cans or 12 lbs., 12 ozs. Onions, red—1 cup or 1 large or 2⁄3 lb. Bell pepper, green or red—1 cup or 1 medium Garlic—1⁄4 cup Cilantro, fresh—1 1⁄2 cups or ~2 bunches Lime juice—1⁄2 cup or 3 limes Red wine vinegar—1 Tbsp. Cumin, ground—1 Tbsp. Taco seasoning—1 Tbsp. Vegetable oil—1⁄3 cup Salt—2 Tbsps. DIRECTIONS 1. Wash the lettuce, spinach and tomatoes for the salad. Shred the lettuce and cheese, as necessary. Dice the tomatoes. Drain and rinse the kidney beans. 2. Combine the lettuce and spinach in a large bowl. For each serving: Toss and arrange 1 cup of the greens mixture on each plate or tray. Sprinkle 1⁄8 cup tomato, 1⁄4 cup kidney beans and 1⁄8 cup cheese on top of the greens. Frame each plate with 13 tortilla chips. 3. Sauté the ground beef and drain the excess fat. Add the water and taco seasoning to the beef and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes. 4. For each salad: Spoon 1⁄4 cup prepared taco meat over the vegetables and cheese and serve with 1⁄8 cup salsa on the side. 5. To prepare the salsa: Drain the tomatoes and reserve the juice. Finely dice the onions, bell peppers and garlic. Chop the cilantro. Toast the cumin. 6. In a large pan, heat the reserved tomato juice to a boil. Turn down to medium heat and reduce the liquid until it is thickened and reduced in volume by about half.* 7. Mix the remaining salsa ingredients in a large bowl to combine. Once the reserve tomato liquid is cooled, add it to the salsa. 8. Reserve the salsa for service at room temperature or refrigerate in a tightly sealed container for up to one week. Recipe & recipe analysis: Let’s Cook Healthy School Meals, http://tinyurl.com/projectbreadcookbook *Notes: The recipe for the salsa yields 100 servings of 1⁄4 cup each, but a commercial product may be used. If making the salsa, and your prep site does not have access to a stovetop to reduce the tomato liquid, substitute 1-2 cups of tomato paste, depending on your desired salsa thickness. If this recipe passes the test with a small group of students, conduct a complete nutrient analysis. According to the recipe source, one serving of the taco salad (minus the taco seasoning and salsa) provides 2 ozs. meat/meat alternate and 3⁄4 cup total vegetable (1⁄2 cup dark green vegetable, 1⁄4 cup red/orange vegetable). One serving of the salsa provides 1⁄4 cup red/orange vegetable. If serving as part of the reimbursable meal, adjust the serving size as necessary to meet current meal pattern requirements. KITCHEN WISDOM SAYS . . . • This was a big hit with both kids and staff as a grab ‘n’ go option at our high school. It also would work well as a served meal. • We added 3 Tbsps. of taco seasoning to the salsa and 2 Tbsps. of taco seasoning to the meat. I did not add water to the meat, and it came out great. • The reduced-down tomato sauce made the salsa watery when it was sitting. • We have served refried beans or pinto beans instead of kidney beans with our version of a taco salad. • Prepared or commodity salsa also can be used, as well as a prepared taco seasoning mix. • We thought the corn chips and salad on the plate was too much for high school students. An edible taco bowl or having the chips on the side could work well. The recipe also could be served on nachos. • This could be served with brown rice or seasoned rice to add a grain. Kitchen Wisdom says . . . Try This! WILTED BABY SPINACH SALAD YIELD: 24 servings PER SERVING (Grades K-5): 290 cal., 17 g pro., 39 g carb., 5 g fiber, 8 g fat, 1 g sat. fat, 30 mg chol., 670 mg sod. PER SERVING (Grades 6-8): 390 cal., 23 g pro., 56 g carb., 6 g fiber, 10 g fat, 1 g sat. fat, 40 mg chol., 710 mg sod. PER SERVING (Grades 9-12): 440 cal., 30 g pro., 57 g carb., 6 g fiber, 11 g fat, 1 g sat. fat, 60 mg chol., 810 mg sod. SALAD INGREDIENTS Rice, red, whole-grain blend—19 ozs.* Chicken breast, skinless, boneless, fully cooked, warm*—2 1⁄4 lbs.* Baby spinach—24 cups Chickpeas, canned—6 cups Red bell peppers—1 1⁄2 lbs. Sunflower seeds, unsalted—1⁄2 cup DRESSING INGREDIENTS Garlic, fresh—4 full bulbs Olive oil—1⁄2 tsp. Mayonnaise, lowfat—4 cups Lemon juice, bottled—4 tsps. Rosemary, fresh—2 tsps. Black pepper, ground—1 tsp. Water—1 cup DIRECTIONS 1. Dice the chicken into large pieces. Drain and rinse the chickpeas. Slice the bell peppers. Toast the sunflower seeds. Chop the rosemary. 2. Prepare the rice according to the package directions. Transfer the rice to a food-safe container, cover and hold in a hot holding unit above 135°F until ready to use. 3. Arrange the chicken in a single layer on a sheet pan lined with baking paper. Heat the uncovered pan of chicken in a preheated 350°F convection oven for 7-9 minutes or until the minimum internal temperature reaches 165°F. Hold the chicken covered in a hot holding unit above 135°F until ready to use. 4. Place the garlic bulbs, unbroken, on a sheet of foil. Drizzle the oil on top and close up the foil to create a bundle. Place in a preheated 375°F convection oven and roast for 40 minutes or until the individual cloves are soft. Allow to cool at room temperature before handling. Cut the garlic bulbs in half before squeezing out the garlic from the individual cloves. 5. To prepare the dressing: Combine the roasted garlic, mayonnaise, lemon juice, rosemary, black pepper and water in a food processor or blender and mix until blended. Portion 2 Tbsps. of the prepared dressing for each serving and hold under refrigeration at or below 40°F until ready to serve. 6. To assemble each serving for grades K-5: Place 1 cup of spinach on a plate or bowl. Top with 1⁄2 cup (#8 scoop) of hot rice, 1 1⁄2 ozs. of chicken, 1⁄4 cup (#16 scoop) of chickpeas and 1⁄4 cup (1 oz.) of red peppers. Garnish with 1 tsp. of sunflower seeds. Serve with 2 Tbsps. of the reserved dressing. 7. To assemble each serving for grades 6-8: Place 1 cup of spinach on a plate or bowl. Top with 1 cup of hot rice, 2 ozs. of chicken, 1⁄4 cup (#16 scoop) of chickpeas and 1⁄4 cup (1 oz.) of red peppers. Garnish with 1 tsp. of sunflower seeds. Serve with 2 Tbsps. of the reserved dressing. 8. To assemble each serving for grades 9-12: Place 1 cup of spinach on a plate or bowl. Top with 1 cup of hot rice, 3 ozs. of chicken, 1⁄4 cup (#16 scoop) of chickpeas and 1⁄4 cup (1 oz.) of red peppers. Garnish with 1 tsp. of sunflower seeds. Serve with 2 Tbsps. of the reserved dressing. 9. If not serving immediately, hold the prepared salads covered under refrigeration at or below 40°F. Photo, recipe & recipe analysis: Uncle Ben’s, www.marsfoodservices.com *Notes: Uncle Ben’s naturel™ Wild Red Whole Grain Blend (35183) can be used for this recipe. For grades 6-8 and 9-12, use 2 1⁄4 lbs. of rice. For grades 6-8, use 3 lbs. of chicken, and for grades 9-12, use 4 1⁄2 lbs. of chicken. According to the company that provided this recipe, each portion provides the following equivalents: • Meat/meat alternates: Grades K-5—2 ozs., Grades 6-8—2 1⁄4 ozs. and Grades 9-12—3 ozs. • Grains: Grades K-5—1 oz., Grades 6-8—2 ozs. and Grades 9-12—2 ozs. • Vegetables (dark green): Grades K-5—1⁄2 cup, Grades 6-8—1⁄2 cup and Grades 9-12—1⁄2 cup. Vegetables (red/orange): Grades K-5— 1⁄4 cup, Grades 6-8—1⁄4 cup and Grades 9-12—1⁄4 cup. KITCHEN WISDOM SAYS . . . • The kids and staff who were part of our taste test at our middle school loved this recipe. The dressing was great, and we will use it on other salads, as well. • The recipe was easy to put together and a great salad option for schools. • Although we love the idea of red rice in the recipe, we will probably go with a brown rice due to cost and accessibility. Couscous also could be substituted for the rice. • Kids were a little hesitant at first to try the salad, but they loved the dressing. • We offered a raspberry vinaigrette with the salad. • This recipe might be more accepted by high school students. PANZANELLA SALAD YIELD: 96 servings PER SERVING: 220 cal., 4 g pro., 19 g carb., 3 g fiber, 15 g fat, 1 g sat. fat, 0 mg chol., 350 mg sod. SALAD INGREDIENTS Bread, whole-wheat, day-old or toasted—6 lbs or 12 qts. Garlic, fresh—1 oz. or 12 cloves Tomatoes, chopped—9 lbs. or 24 tomatoes or 12 qts. Cucumber—6 lbs. or 3 qts., 3 cups Peppers, yellow, roasted, sliced—9 lbs. or 16 peppers or 12 cups Onion, red—2 lbs., 10 ozs. or 6 cups Basil, fresh, loosely packed—6 ozs. or 6 cups DRESSING INGREDIENTS High oleic canola oil—48 ozs. or 1 1⁄2 qts., with 3⁄4 cup reserved White wine vinegar—18 ozs. or 2 1⁄4 cups Salt—2 Tbsps. Pepper—2 Tbsps. DIRECTIONS 1. Cut the tomatoes into 1-in. chunks. Peel, halve and slice the cucumber. Roast and slice the yellow peppers. Peel, quarter and slice the onions. Coarsely chop the basil. 2. Heat the oven to 400°F. Place the bread on a baking sheet and bake 5-6 minutes on each side or until crisp and golden brown around the edges. Cool 5 minutes. 3. Cut the garlic on a diagonal at one end. Rub warm bread slices with the garlic. Brush the bread with the reserved oil. Cut all the bread slices into 1-in. cubes. 4. To prepare the dressing: Mix the remaining oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. 5. Gently toss the bread cubes, tomatoes, cucumbers, yellow peppers, onions and basil with the dressing in a large bowl. 6. For each serving: Portion 1 cup of the salad. Photo, recipe & recipe analysis: Omega-9 Oils, www.omega-9oils.com *Note: If serving as part of the reimbursable meal, adjust the serving size as necessary to meet current meal pattern requirements. KITCHEN WISDOM SAYS . . . • This recipe has a nice, refreshing and clean taste that the kids and staff at our middle school really enjoyed. • I did not rub the bread with oil after it came out of the oven. I just rubbed it with a garlic clove and cubed the bread. I tossed the bread with the salad right before serving. I used about one half of the amount of bread called for in this recipe, as the original amount would be way too much for the amount of dressing and vegetables. • For this to be a complete meal, we would need to add another grain and a protein. • We offered a pesto-rubbed chicken breast to give this meal a protein component. • We used purchased croutons instead of bread. JURICH SALAD YIELD: 24 servings SALAD INGREDIENTS Potatoes, medium—5 potatoes or ~8 ozs. Brussels sprouts—24 ozs. or ~5 cups Cauliflower florets, bite-sized—24 ozs. or ~7 1⁄2 cups Corn kernels—16 ozs. or ~ 3 1⁄3 cups Edamame—16 ozs. or ~ 3 1⁄3 cups Grape tomatoes—2 pints Onions, red—1 cup or ~3 ozs. DRESSING INGREDIENTS Olive oil—1 cup Lemon juice—1⁄4 cup Red wine vinegar—1⁄4 cup Thyme, fresh—2 Tbsps. Salt—to taste Pepper—to taste DIRECTIONS 1. Cut the potatoes into large diced pieces. Cut the Brussels sprouts in half. Cut the grape tomatoes in half. Thinly slice the onions. Chop the thyme. 2. Cook the potatoes, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower florets, corn kernels and edamame in separate pots of salted, boiling water until each is just crisp tender. Drain each and cool. 3. Combine the cooked and cooled vegetables in a large bowl. 4. To prepare the dressing: Whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, thyme, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Pour over the vegetables and toss gently to coat. 5. Per serving: Portion 1 cup of salad. Photo & recipe: Brian Lenihan, executive chef for The Dwight School, New York, N.Y., for Idaho Potato Commission, www.idahopotato.com *Notes: If this recipe passes the test with a small group of students, conduct a nutrient analysis. If serving as part of the reimbursable meal, adjust the serving size as necessary to meet current meal pattern requirements. BONUS WEB CONTENT How many types of salad exist in today’s cuisine—and what are these different types? Find out in online-exclusive content from School Nutrition. Also available online is a detailed look at how certain food concepts related to serving salads to young customers stack up in a trends survey conducted with chefs, as well as additional recipes. To read this content, visit www.schoolnutrition.org/snmagazinebonuscontent. Recipes obtained from outside sources and published in School Nutrition have not been tested by the magazine or SNA in a school foodservice setting, except for certain “Kitchen Wisdom” selections, which are evaluated by a volunteer pool of operators. When available, nutrient analyses are provided by the recipe source. Required ingredients, preparation steps and nutrient content make some recipes more appropriate for catering applications or adult meals. Readers are encouraged to test recipes and calculate their own nutrition analyses and meal patterns before adding a recipe to school menus. In addition, SN recognizes that individual schools use varying documentation methods and preparation steps to comply with HACCP principles; we encourage you to add your own HACCP steps to these recipes. Brent Frei is a freelance writer based in Schaumburg, Ill.
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