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Bye-Bye Bounty: CSA week 5 - Homemade salad dressing FTW!

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Mmmm, salad.

If you’re a fan of local food, it’s definitely a staple this time of year. Greens are everywhere and come in all sorts of yummy shapes and sizes from baby salad mix to big heads of leaves of kale just begging to be subdued into something green and colorful.

But, after a few weeks of CSA goodness from Rolling Prairie and trips to the Lawrence Farmers’ Market, even I, the queen of salads, can be begging for something new.

That said, we can’t really change the fact that we have tons of greens at the ready and they’re perfect for salad. So, why not just change the salad? We did that a bit last week with my favorite kale salad. But, because it’s my favorite salad, I’ve been eating it all winter and spring.

Time for a change.

I happened to find that change in an unusual place — the Bay Leaf’s close-out sale. Way back when the beloved Lawrence cooking shop was closing, I went in and picked up three dressing bottles. The bottles had salad dressing recipes etched right into the glass and seemed like a good edition not only to my kitchen, but also to the kitchens of both my mothers-in-law for Mother’s Day. (What? They both love salad!)

Anyway, I brought home the bottles, doled out the gifts and washed mine out. Last week, when I got a deluge of greens — salad greens, lettuce, kale, along with homemade pesto and radishes — I decided it was high time to try that sucker out. I picked out a honey mustard dressing recipe and went to town. What you do is fill each wet ingredient up to the line, spoon in the dry ingredients and shake. The result is a perfectly bottled dressing.

The first salad I chose to serve it on was a mix of my spring greens, two Fuji apples and a handful of chopped walnuts. It was perfection. So much so that I ate this entire salad.

Embarrassing, but I was hungry.

Later in the week, I made the salad at the top of this post and covered it in the remainder of the dressing. In that salad, along with my CSA lettuce and some local romaine are: red peppers, cucumbers, mangoes, kalamata olives, sliced grape tomatoes, capers and local green onions. YUM.

Also, I suppose I should say what I did with my kale last week if I didn’t make my beloved kale salad. Well, if you must know, it was my favorite green smoothie. While the kiddo prefers banana and spinach, my all-time favorite is half an in-season cantaloupe with four or five kale leaves, stems removed. The result is a pretty, sweet green drink.

This week’s CSA included strawberries, mushrooms, lettuce, salad mix, chard (I traded turnips for two bunches).

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