When the temperatures climb and the days lengthen, salads often move from a supporting role on Texas menus to full-on star status. Here are some fresh and unusual recipes from the Cooking with Texas Highways cookbook, available at bookstores and at www.texashighways.com.
Sammy’s Lebanese Restaurant in Houston (currently closed, but re-opening at a new location soon) provided this recipe. Lots of parsley makes this salad especially cool and refreshing. (Two onions makes a strong tabouli; try it with one if you’re not an onion-lover.)
- ½ cup fresh lemon juice (approx. 4 lemons)
- ½ cup cracked wheat (bulgur)
- 2 medium yellow onions, finely chopped
- 2 T salt
- 1T cinnamon (optional)
- 1 pound (5 bunches) flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 1 pound medium tomatoes, finely chopped
- ½ bunch fresh mint (or more to taste), finely chopped
- 4 green onions, finely chopped
- ½ cup olive oil
- cabbage or romaine leaves
Combine lemon juice with cracked wheat in a small bowl. Combine onion with salt and cinnamon, and add to cracked-wheat mixture.
Combine parsley, tomatoes, mint, and green onion in a large bowl. Add the cracked-wheat mixture and olive oil; mix well. Serve on cabbage or romaine leaves.
Apple–Bacon Spinach Salad
This recipe was adapted from one that appears in Love Creek Orchard’s Adams Apple Cookbook.
- ½ pound sliced bacon
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 pound fresh spinach, washed well and stems removed
- 3 large red apples (unpeeled), cored and diced
- 1 bunch green onions, chopped
- 1T. lemon juice
- 2 T. mayonnaise
- 1 cup croutons
- ½ cup grated Swiss cheese
Cook bacon until crisp, reserving ½ cup fat. Crumble bacon and set aside. Combine dripping with garlic and set aside.
Tear spinach into bite-size pieces in salad bowl; add apples and green onions. Combine garlic-fat mixture with lemon juice and mayo to make a dressing. Pour over spinach mixture and toss. Add crumbled bacon, croutons, and cheese, and toss again.