Saturday, January 15, 2011

The salad He Actually Eats

Last Spring I outed my husband as one with a rather pre-packaged palate.  The following week he went to a healthy eating conference and they scared the pants off of him.

He came home a lone crusader against the evils of nitrates, trans fats and glucose-fructose.  The latter is his particular enemy.  Now just about everyone who reads know that this stuff is bad for you but to my husband it is particularly evil.  In his mind cancer, diabetes, heart disease, bunions and bad breath can all be linked to this menace.  Quite honestly I think his solution to world peace is just to get rid of all glucose fructose and instantly we would all bond over fresh bruschetta with home made bread.

I was DELIGHTED to discover he was going to try more homemade stuff.  I was a little less delighted to discover his new passion did not come with a new palate.

But to his credit he is trying new recipes and we are slowly but surely eliminating all processed meat, store bought crackers and cookies and basically anything that has GF in it.

I think a turning point was the day I was making him a salad and realized that I was about to feed my husband something that had cumin, sea-salt and curly parsley in it.  And what's more, he asked for it.  I think I may have cried.  He had even hunted up the recipe for me after trying a tomato and cucumber salad at a restaurant and thinking it was some good.

My favourite meal moment came a few weeks ago when he came home after eating out with some of the guys at work.

Now you gotta understand something about Way Cooler.  When he eats out it is at a chain restaurant.  Preferably one that he has been to many times before and has fish and chips and clubhouse sandwiches on the menu.  But his co-workers insisted on trying this place so he looked for the "safest" thing in the deli case and settled on a pasta salad.

He came home singing the praises of this pasta salad. He described it in intricate detail and fairly soon I had pulled up Pioneer Woman on the iPad and showed him this.  Turns out that Oklahoma has also come to a little deli in Calgary.  It was pretty much the exact same salad.  So, now, with a few modifications I make this for way cooler on a weekly basis for his lunches.

So for your eating pleasure, the two homemade recipes that Way Cooler cannot get enough of.

Dave's Tomato and Cucumber Salad - This is best in the fall when I was plucking tomatoes from our plant and then immediately chopping and serving them.  We use bottled lemon juice and Way Cooler also really likes it with red onion.  And now my mother in law will faint dead away upon learning that her son is actually eating onions.  If you live in a climate where you can harvest tomatoes in the summer than this is more a summer salad.  If you harvest your tomatoes in the spring, well, please just keep that tidbit of information to yourself mmmkay? Thus says she who lives where today's high is a balmy -17C (1F)

Sun dried Tomato Pasta Salad   We ALL love this salad, with the exception of Sprout but then he doesn't really count as he eats two grapes a week and is full.  Because fresh basil is impossibly hard to find and impossibly expensive up here in the winter I use the stuff in a tube.  Please do not judge me.  Come summer I will grow the stuff on my deck and make my salad even more magical.  I also reduce the oil to 3/4 cup, take out the olives (as Way Cooler's new passion for good food only goes so far) and am very generous with the red wine vinegar.

Bon Appetit.


Nicole said...

Holy crap that pasta salad looks divine. I want it right now. Where do you buy pitted olives? I only ever get ones with pits. That seems like the greatest invention ever.

And you grew tomatoes? How?

Leanne said...

Yum... I'm adding to my grocery list right now!

Nan | WrathOfMom said...

Now if he would only start cooking for himself. ;)

Lady Why said...

Way to go, Way Cooler!! I share your utter disdain for all things processed and GFish. Now, if you wouldn't mind giving my husband a call, I'd appreciate it... and so would his arteries.

Those recipes looks DIVINE! I shall be adding them to my repertoire. :-)

granola_granny said...

Thanks for sharing the recipes. They look fabulous... and did I tell you I loved the salad you brought at Thanksgiving? Yum!