How to make a green salad with nasturtiums
Nasturtiums are widely grown plants, because they are easy to grow and have beautiful flowers. Many people don’t realize that they are very edible and quite good tasting, however. Added to a green salad, nasturtiums give a flavorful and slightly peppery taste, and the blossoms not only can be eaten, they also give color to the salad.
Nasturtium blossoms are also just about as close to a terrific tasting garnish that someone is likely to find. The are great for not only looking at, but also for eating!
Collecting and cleaning the leaves
Nasturtium leaves are easy to collect. They are normally attached to long, slender, brittle stems. However, though the stem is edible, it is usually easiest to clip the stem off just below the leaf. The leaves have the same general consistency of leaf lettuce.
When collecting, the leaves should be placed in a bowl of cold water for cleaning. Swishing the leaves around in the water washes off the dirt and dust in much the same way that water is good for rinsing leaf lettuce. It is perfectly okay if there is some water clinging to the leaves after rinsing. A head of leaf lettuce can be rinsed in the same water.
Preparing the salad
Chop the lettuce and nasturtium leaves into bite sized pieces. The optional ingredients can be added at this time, and the salad should be mixed well. Note that while lettuce and nasturtium leaves are all that are actually needed for the salad, the optional ingredients add flavor and health benefits.
Shredded carrots, diced cucumber, shredded radishes, sliced green onions, sliced celery,and diced sweet pepper makes the salad stand out, and they are as fitting as they are in any green salad. Addition of diced hard boiled eggs, sliced meat, or seafood such as shelled crab, can make the salad a meal.
Collection and addition of nasturtium blooms
The blooms are also tasty, though they mostly add color to the salad. For this reason, the blooms are picked after the rest of the salad is made, and are normally placed upon the top of the salad. As with the leaves, the flowers should be rinsed before use. The fresher they are, the better the dish will likely look.
The blossoms don’t have the same peppery taste that the leaves have, however they still add flavor to the salad.
The salad can be put into individual bowls prior to adding the blossoms, or it can be made in a large bowl and simply dished out. A person’s favorite salad dressing can then be added. If no salad dressing is available, mayonnaise works well, especially if it is homemade.
A nice touch is to add a few peach, pear, or banana slices as the fruit on the side looks good and tastes great, even if there is salad dressing on them.
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