EAT THIS! Lettuce, I'm sorry... It's over.

A welcomed break -up. Say good bye to lettuce and have a new love affair with chopped salad!

Dear Lettuce,

I hope this letter finds you well. I don't
know where to start , so I'm just going to be as direct and honest with you as
I possibly can…

This letter is about how I feel towards you, and it should have been written probably sooner than later , but it is what it is, so here it is .

Lately I just haven't been feeling the same about us and the direction we are
heading. You are bland and boring you have zero nutritional value to me. You
take up space in my salad bowl and I literally have to cover you up with
blankets of salad dressings and sauces just to stomach eating you anymore.

A lot of stuff has happened in my life lately, as you know and some big changes
have been made about the way I work, the way I live , and the way I think about
produce. I have to be honest with you Lettuce, my feelings have changed, I
don't see a future for us . I know this is the last thing you want to hear from
me but I feel if I tell you anything less than that, I'm leading you down a
path that isn't right for either one of us and that is not fair. Not fair to
you and not fair to me.

My heart is not in this Lettuce, please try to understand. This is not easy for
me. In order for me to be completely happy, I have to start to follow my heart
and my taste buds and move in the direction they take me, and up until this
point I haven't done that. Lettuce, I have made up my mind, I know what I want,
please don't make this even more difficult for me by thinking you can change my
mind. This is the best thing for both of us, I know that this the farthest
thought from your mind and is difficult for you to understand right now , but
one day when we look back on this I hope you will agree. I really truly hope
that we can still be friends. Maybe we can meet up in a sandwich or on top of
a taco someday. Thank you for the memories.-Jade

For Months now I have
been on a mission to convert all of my friends and family into chopped saladlovers. I have vowed to  never serve a traditional salad at my dinner table again! I am completely over lettuce.
Besides the fact that it is just boring it is also seriously lacking in flavor
as well as nutrition.

I have always been a huge fan of the chopped salad. But the last thing I want to do when I come home from a long day is chop vegetables. ENTER THE SALAD CHOPPER ! A few months back I got one for my birthday . I absolutely feel head over heels with
it. It just made it ten times easier and faster to just chop up some veggies
which were then in a container attached  to toss with a dressing and
marinate to perfection by lunch time or dinner. (And I have to admit being a
food stylist something about all of my chopped
veggies being perfectly uniform and square turns me on.)I
found that when I started making the chopped veggie salads, that at the end of
my dinner parties or just my everyday meals I serve my family there was
literally NO salad left over! A big change from the days when guests would
politely scoop a helping of the salad onto their plates and secretly hope that
dinner would be served in time for them to put their salads aside and then
unfortunately be unable to finish because they were  “so full” from my
magnificent dinner.  
The trick to a chopped salad is coming up
with combinations that everyone will love. And what’s great is the combinations are endless!! Tomatoes’ , cucumbers, red onions and black olives tossed in a
tangy Italian dressing is the number one requested salad in my house. Also,instead of serving the usual bread and salad I will simply grill the bread switch out the Italian dressing for balsamic vinaigrette and add chopped mozzarella and fresh basil for a nice bruschetta. You can also make a large batch every week and then  add a chopped egg or can of tuna for a great exciting new lunch. I would absolute encourage you to get a salad chopper if you have the chance. They are so fun and your kids will really enjoy chopping the veggies for the salads.
Let’s also not forget parties! When you have to bring something a chopped salad with the right dressing gets way more attention and praise. Esthetically speaking it just looks better. Take my basic chopped salad and add some great macaroni broccoli black olives and grilled chopped chicken for a tasty and eye catching pasta salad. Which by the way also makes a very kid friendly weekday dinner! I would love to hear from you on your
favorite ways to do a chopped salad. This week I am including 3 of my
favorites: Just chop add dressing to taste and mix.

Basic Chopped salad-

4 tomatoes 1 red onion 1 cucumber 1can black
olives Italian dressing

Greek Chopped Salad- 1 tomato 1cucumber 1 red onion 1 carrot 1 celery stick
Feta black olives pepperoncini’s and Greek dressing.

Mixed Vegetable Macaroni Salad-Broccoli tomato cucumber peppers onions macaroni
Italian dressing and 1 tbsp dry ranch dip mix


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Michelle Thor January 15, 2013 at 09:00 PM
Jade, I experienced the greek salad recently with no lettuce. I was on vacation on a cruise ship with the family for christmas. I ordered a salad for room service and low and behold there was no lettuce. At first i was shocked and then offended. I was too hungry to complain but sure they had made a mistake. It turned out it was one of the best "salads" I had ever had. I was still sure it was an error until the next day when i ordered the same salad and it came the same way. Great story. You had me in stitches!
Jade M Mason January 15, 2013 at 09:46 PM
Thank you Michelle! Seriously..what is the first thing you eat on a salad? NOT THE LETTUCE!! lol I go straight for the olives,cucumbers, onions and pepperonccinis. Then whats left over is literally the lettuce. I asked a friend of mine in Cali. about a Persain salad we used to get everytime I was out there and even though its your basic Onion Tomato Basil combo with just a sprinkle of cumin ,salt and pepper and a touch of olive oil it is the furtherst taste from what you would think. You should trythat you always seem to be interested in trying new things. Thank you for your comments as well.
Jennifer Fitzgerald January 15, 2013 at 10:09 PM
That was hysterical! Jade, you crack me up! I think this letter will make you even more famous! lol Love the chop fresh veggies and yummy dressings! I can't wait to try all the different chopped ideas. I 100% agree with you in regards to Boring old lettuce...LOL.. I think the BEST salads are made with out any lettuce. I love a sprinkle of Oregano on the veggies and dressing, it gives it a nice flavor as well. I look forward to next weeks ideas and recipes! They are so unique each time. :-)
Beth Melillo January 18, 2013 at 08:21 PM
Love the letter! Wondering if you've tried the grated salad though? Especially for winter root vegetables (like turnips, beets, carrots, and cabbage) it's tops! Beth ConnectShore.com
Jade M Mason January 18, 2013 at 08:35 PM
I have not. Do you have a recipe for it? I would love to try it out this weekend!! I make a polish pickled grated carrot and beet salad. But I would love something seasonal like a root salad. I am a huge cabbage fan..in fact I will be stuffing some this afternoon:) (Thank you for your comments!!)


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