Posts Tagged ‘croutons’


January 20, 2010

When I think about the colour green, I think about trees, grass, apples, kiwi, limes, beans, peppers, brussel sprouts, flowers, green tea, green P parking…

Ok, ok, maybe I also think about money (just a little!).

I also think about salad and how much I love it. After scarfing down half a box of Triscuit crackers and half a container of cream cheese at work (and this was just my appetizer) I wanted a lighter dinner tonight. A nice big green garden salad sounded exactly like what my hips had ordered.

At the grocery store I discovered the mini pickled spicy peppers that you get when you order the bottomless garden salad from East Side Mario’s. I almost dropped my grocery basket because I was so excited to see them (they are not easy to find…this is the first time I have spotted them at a grocery store downtown). Some people love em, some people hate em, but we are definitely big fans!

Oh! Pickles are another green “item”! Other than fruits, nature and vegetables, I’m having a really hard time figuring out what else is green.

Anyways, with a few delicious ingredients, garden salads do not have to be boring. I sliced up cucumbers and peppers, shaved some carrot and parmesan cheese using a vegetable peeler, added some craisins and pickled peppers and my salad du jour came alive. I also made homemade croutons and a homemade balsamic dressing. Here’s how:


  • whole wheat bread, cubed
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Heat your oven to 425 degrees. On a sheet pan lay out all the cubed bread on a single layer. Pour the melted butter on top, sprinkle on the seasoning spices and mix around with your hands until each cube gets some of the love. Bake until golden (about 5 minutes).

Balsamic Dressing

  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

In a bowl, mix all the ingredients together, except for the olive oil. When all the other ingredients are combined slowly pour in the olive oil while whisking quickly. This will help emulsify everything together. Extra dressing will keep well in the fridge for a few days.

Bada bing bada boom! At least I think that’s what the East Side Mario’s tagline is…

Too bad my salad is better!