Salads are a popular ready-to-eat dish, usually made up of often leafy vegetables.
Salads have their food origins in Ancient Greece and Roman and where they were eaten as mixed greens with dressing. The word “salad” comes from the French salade of the same meaning, from the Latin salata (salty), from sal (salt).
In his 1699 book, Acetaria: A Discourse on Sallets, John Evelyn attempted with little success to encourage his fellow Britons to eat fresh salad greens. Mary, Queen of Scots ate boiled celery root over greens covered with creamy mustard dressing, truffles, chervil and slices of hard-boiled eggs.
For the most part, they are served chilled or at a moderate temperature and often served with a dressings. Salads may also contain ingredients such as fruit, grain, meat, seafood and sweets. Though many salads use raw ingredients, some use cooked ingredients.
They amazing thing about salads is that they can be served as a single dish or can be served at any point during a meal, such as:
- Appetizer salads are basically light salads to stimulate the appetite as the first course of the meal.
- Side salads, like a potato salad or a coleslaw, accompany the main course as a side dish.
- Main Course salads, which usually containing a portion of heartier fare, such as chicken breast, slices of beef or even shrimp
- Palate-cleansing salads, to settle the stomach after the main course.
- Dessert salads, that sweet versions often containing fruit, gelatin and/or whipped cream