Meal salads are great for summer dinners and are easy to make. They can be made for one person or for a crowd. I recreated this salad based on a salad I have had out many times at Pappadeaux here in Houston. Because this is a chopped salad, make sure to chop the lettuce using the chiffonade technique. Not all of the baked pita strips will be needed, but can be stored in a Ziplock bag or let your kids munch on them as I did. Ingredient amounts will serve one. Adjust ingredient amounts to accommodate the number of people serving. See Chatty Advice on how to make a great salad at home.
2 oz. (1/4 cup) of cooked shrimp cut into bite sized pieces
3/4 cups iceberg lettuce chopped – see chiffonade technique
3/4 cups of Romaine lettuce chopped – see chiffonade technique
1/4 cup of tomatoes diced
1/4 cup of a red pepper diced
1/4 cup cucumber diced
1/4 cup of kalmata olives pitted
1 tablespoon of a green onion thinly sliced
3 tablespoons of Girard’s Greek Feta Vinaigrette
2 tablespoons of crumbled feta cheese
Baked Pita Strips
1 piece of pita bread cut into half inch strips
Non-stick cooking spray
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
Make baked pita strips by evenly spreading strips on a cookie sheet spray both sides of strips with non-stick cooking spray and sprinkle with kosher salt. Bake in a preheated oven at 375 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes. Check frequently so they don’t burn. Remove from oven and set aside. Thaw shrimp or cook shrimp if using fresh shrimp. Remove shells, tail and veins if present. Once it has cooled, cut into bite sized pieces. Rinse and drain salad greens and pat dry. Prepare the all of the salad ingredients. In a large bowl add all the salad ingredients except for the feta cheese and lemon wedge and pour dressing over salad. Toss until evenly coated, plate, squeeze lemon wedge over salad and top with feta cheese and baked pita strips.
For lunch, try an ice tea or for dinner a tryWente Vineyards Riva Ranch Chardonnay (Livermore Valley), Irony Chardonnay (Napa Valley), Paulo Alto Reserve (Chile), Fireman’s #4 Blonde Ale by Real Ale Brewing Company (Blanco, TX), Saint Arnold Fancy Lawnmower (Houston, TX) or Skinny Dip New Belgium Brewing (Ft. Collins, CO).
Quite a few people have asked “Why do salads always taste better in a restaurant vs. making them at home?” There are a couple of things to making a great salad at home. First off, chill the bowl or plate you will be using to plate the salad. Second, take the time to chop or dice the ingredients and use the chiffonade technique for cutting the salad greens when appropriate. Third, toss the salad with the dressing so the salad is evenly coated. Finally enjoy your restaurant style salad you created!