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A Flower Salad

(Vaughan’s Vegetable Cook Book)

The most beautiful salad ever imagined is rarely seen upon our tables,

although the principal material for its concoction may be grown in the

tiniest yard. Any one who has tried growing nasturtiums must admit that

they almost take care of themselves, and if the ground is enriched but a

little their growth and yield of blossom is astonishingly abundant. It

is these same beautiful blossoms that are used in salad, and, as if

nature had surmised that their beauty should serve the very practical

end of supplying the salad bowl, the more one plucks these growing

flowers, the greater number will a small plant yield. The pleasant,

pungent flavor of these blossoms would recommend them, aside from their

beauty, and when they are shaken out of ice-cold water with some bits of

heart lettuce, they, too, become crisp in their way. One of the

prettiest ways of arranging a nasturtium salad is to partly fill the

bowl with the center of a head of lettuce pulled apart and the blossoms

plentifully scattered throughout. Prof. Blot, that prince of

saladmakers, recommends the use of the blossoms and petals (not the

leaves) of roses, pinks, sage, lady's slipper, marshmallow and

periwinkle, as well as the nasturtium, for decorating the ordinary

lettuce salad, and reminds his readers that roses and pinks may be had

at all seasons of the year. In summer the lovely pink marshmallow is to

be found wild in the country places near salt water; so abundant are

these flowers in the marshes (hence the name) and so large are the

petals that there need be no fear of robbing the flower vases to fill

the salad bowl. These salads should be dressed at the table by the

mistress, as, of course, a little wilting is sure to follow if the

seasoning has been applied for any length of time. A French dressing is

the best, although a mayonnaise may be used if preferred. Opinions

differ greatly as regards the proportions of the former, but to quote

Blot again, the proper ones are two of oil to one of vinegar, pepper and

salt to taste. If the eye is not trained to measure pepper and salt and

the hostess is timid about dressing a salad, let her have measured in a

pretty cut-glass sprinkler a teaspoon of salt and half of pepper mixed,

for every two of oil. For a small salad the two of oil and one of

vinegar will be sufficient; measure the saltspoon even full of oil,

sprinkle this over the salad, then half the salt and pepper; toss all

lightly with the spoon and fork, then add the other spoonful of oil, the

vinegar and the remainder of the salt and pepper; toss well and serve.

How simple, and yet there are women who never have done the graceful

thing of dressing lettuce at the table.

Potatoes and tomatoes in alternate layers may take the place of lettuce.

Just before serving toss all together.

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