Back of my neck getting dirty and gritty… Man, can I not stand this heat. I apologize in advance for all you people out there who have just been waiting for this weather and love the sun and whatnot – but for someone like me, who was born in a freakin’ blizzard, for chrissake, this is unbearable. I can’t concentrate, everything is greasy, bugs everywhere and I have to think of skin cancer every time I’m in a stray of that burning furnace of a planet (wait – is the sun even a planet? or is it a star? see – I can’t think straight!).
Another byproduct of the humidity, besides not being able to move, is not being able to eat. Or not wanting to. Not that I don’t get hungry, it’s just that the appetite goes away when I think of any food that could match the temperatures. And I’m not about to cook and create more heat. So this past week-end I decided I’d try some salad instead. The problem here is that thanks to a childhood trauma, I’m not a big fan of the leafy green stuff. Enter: two recipes for salads, without salad!
Recipe 1: Mom’s mix
This is a salad “created” by my mom, one of those evenings when she didn’t feel like cooking but still had to eat something. Traditionally, things were just pretty much piled together. But: it’s tasty and filling!
I usually use cherry tomatoes (‘cuz they’re cuter) and just cut them in half, then chop up the mozzarella in uneven chunks (important for the taste!), buy pre-sliced beetroot (with a little juice) and mix them all in a bowl. Cook the lentils (red ones need about 10 minutes, green ones need 30), let them cool down and add to the bowl. Douse with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, toss everything up, and voila! Thanks to the proteins in the lentils, this is a pretty satiable dish, yet light, and very low-carb! Also suited for vegetarians.
Recipe 2: Greek mix
Last Thursday, The BF and I finally booked our post-diploma vacation: two weeks on the isle of Crete! Sea, beach and sun – here we come! As a next step, I bought a travel guide, to get to know the island a little. In there were also typical local dishes, including this (rather known) salad mix. Appropriate, since the Greek weather is also hot and Mediterranean food is known to be healthy. Sadly, I just read yesterday that there was an earthquake (5,9 on the Richter Scale) on Crete, although no damage has been reported. Can’t wait!
Cut all three constituents into nice, clean cut, even squares (a feast for the eyes!). Mix everything in a big bowl, sprinkle with a mix of green, red and black pepper, add chopped or dried basil and thyme. Douse with olive oil and red vine vinegar, toss up. Serve with a side of Indian naan (mine was with garlic and cilantro) for filling and saucing. Not as fun or strong as the first one, but it gets the job done and is made very quickly. Enjoy!