Feature Articles: Food, Fitness and
Cooking and Produce
Your Garden Can Be Your Salad Bar!
Karma Metzgar, C.F.C.S. Former Northwest Regional Nutrition Specialist in Nodaway County, University of Missouri Extension
You don’t have to have a large garden to have a salad garden. Short rows or even large patio containers of your favorite salad ingredients, will add variety to your palate.
Gardens and salads go together! While some of the first
produce from spring gardens are greens like spinach and lettuce,
our gardens can be our salad bar throughout the growing
As you plan to plant your garden, plant the vegetables you’ll
need as ingredients. Here is a list for starters.
- Sweet peppers (red and green)
- Green onions
- Beans (Green and Wax)
- Fresh Dill
- Green Peas
With these few ingredients from your garden, some salads
you could prepare include:
- Copper Pennies (marinated carrots)
- Three-Bean Salad
- Spinach Salad
- Layered Lettuce
- Marinated Vegetables
- Carrot-Raisin Salad
- (Add your favorite to the list)
Fresh vegetables provide fiber to our diets along with ample
Vitamins A and C. They generally are low-calorie until we add
the sauces and dressings in preparation. But, we can make some
adaptations to our home-prepared dressings so they taste
terrific and contain less oil-and fewer calories.
The trick to making low-calorie dressings is to substitute
pectin (yes the kind we make jams and jellies with) for part or
all of the oil. The pectin thickens the mixture to look and pour
To adapt your recipes follow these easy steps.
- Replace all or part of the oil in the recipe with water.
It’s your call on the amount.
- Figure the total amount of liquid in your recipe. Add up
the amount of water, vinegar, syrup, juice, etc.
- For every 1½ cups liquid, add 2 to 3 tablespoons of dry
pectin. (Depends on thickness desired)
- Allow your mixture to refrigerate several hours to
thicken. You can put it on the salad as your recipe directs or
store in a shakable container. Some dressings on salads are
great on other types of salads too!
The March, 2002 issue of Taste of Harvest: Information for Those Who Produce and Preserve Food in Northwest Missouri has recipes for salads and dressings using pectin. This newsletter is available on-line at: http://extension.missouri.edu/nwregion/tasteofharvest/index.html
Last update: Thursday, December 03, 2009