A quick and easy shrimp and corn salad flavored with cilantro, bell peppers, and crunchy raw tomatillos, this dish is light enough for an easy side and hearty enough for a bright, fresh supper.
'Salad' on Serious Eats
When the summer heat is out of control and amazing produce is flooding the market, sometimes all we want are smart, easy ideas for how to make the most of it without breaking a sweat. Here, we make an incredibly delicious summer squash salad with fennel and dill that is way more than the sum of its parts.
You may think grain salads are humble by nature. But this one, filled with toasted bulgur, smoked trout, and an assertive mix of sliced radishes, red onion, green apple, parsley, and lemon segments mellowed and sweetened by a soak in simple syrup, proves they can be show-stoppers.
What makes the difference between a great bean salad and a boring bowlful of beans? The answer is simple: Go for maximum contrast, both in texture and in flavor. Here, I add layers of crispness and crunch with almonds, radish, radicchio, fresh parsley, scallion, and quick-pickled onion.
It's summertime, we have half day Fridays, a few extra hours of daylight to get our cocktails going, and things are supposed to be easy, darn it! In a conscious effort to simplify our lives and celebrate the awesomeness of fresh summer produce, we're spending the whole season coming up with the absolute easiest, freshest, and tastiest summer dishes we can think of. On the menu today: figs, melon, Spanish ham, and basil in one gorgeous salad.
Japanese versions of Western dishes, known as yōshoku cuisine, may look like the originals that inspired them, but the flavor is unmistakably Japanese. Take this potato salad, which derives its unique flavor from Japanese mayo, rice vinegar, and hot mustard.
The classic flavors of Vietnamese banh mi sandwiches are reworked into the form of Italian panzanella, a salad designed to make stale bread delicious again. This version features pickled and fresh vegetables, lemongrass-marinated tofu, and two sauces that deliver spicy, sweet, and savory flavors.
There are lots of tabbouleh recipes in the world, but many give instructions that can lead to a sopping wet salad with bulgur that's too hard to eat. This one uses pre-salting steps to remove excess moisture from the tomatoes and parsley, then uses the water drained from the tomatoes to soak the bulgur until tender and flavorful. A hint of spices adds complexity and depth.
This grilled potato salad offers a range of textures—crispy, crunchy, and creamy—with a nice smokiness from the grill balanced by a tart grilled lemon vinaigrette flavored with scallions and shallots. The key is par-cooking the potatoes and roughing them up a bit for extra crunch.
Green papaya salad is a Southeast Asian classic, but that green papaya can be hard to find in many parts of the States. Inspired by the flavors of that salad, but using more readily available produce like cabbage, carrot, and green apple, this salad hits all the same notes without sending you on a shopping wild goose chase.
This simple and refreshing pasta salad is made with soba (buckwheat) noodles, raw cucumber, lightly cooked asparagus, and wakame seaweed. It's tossed in a lemon-soy vinaigrette with sesame oil, sesame seeds, and a hit of fresh ginger.
Pasta salad with raw tomatoes and basil is a common summertime dish. Here we give it a thoughtful upgrade by cooking the tomatoes just until bursting, so that they release their rich juices into a flavorful sauce that coats the pasta even when cooled. It's a new summertime must.
Whether you call it Bang Bang Chicken (named after the sound that a pounding mallet makes when tenderizing the tough chicken breasts of yesteryear) or Mysterious Flavor Chicken, this classic cold Sichuan chicken salad dressed with Sichuan peppercorns, garlic, sesame, and chili oil, can be updated using a few modern techniques. Cooking the chicken breasts directly in a bag with aromatics guarantees ultra-moist and flavor-packed chicken without the need for any banging at all.
Mix up your classic chicken salad with this summery variation made with sweet corn, avocado, and the juiciest poached chicken tossed with a light and creamy miso dressing.
The sous-vide cooker is the best way to guarantee the juiciest, tenderest, most flavor-packed chicken salad. Adding aromatics directly to the cooking bag guarantees more flavorful results.
Come summertime, most of us want foods that somehow manage to satisfy while still seeming light and refreshing. No dish better delivers on both counts than the classic iceberg wedge salad, a retro creation that is all about simplicity. And yet, to be the celebration of flavor and texture that it should, we need to make sure to cut the toppings small and play up contrast in flavor and texture wherever possible.
Tender-crisp asparagus and firm tofu tossed in a fiery-sweet Sichuan-style vinaigrette made with roasted chilies and Sichuan peppercorns.
Crispy fried tofu skin, rice noodles, handfuls of herbs, and crunchy, fresh vegetables combine for a light-yet-hearty salad with a huge variety of textures and flavors, all dressed with a punchy lime, garlic, and chili dressing.
The dressing for this salad fires on all cylinders with big bursts of hot, acidic, sweet, and savory elements all in balance. The dressing coats crisp fried pork rinds, softening them up slightly, and making them taste almost bright and refreshing when coupled with plenty of fresh herbs and bean sprouts.
Mixing mayonnaise into chicken salad is the most common way to add moisture, but it's not the only way. Vinaigrette works well too, like this tangy Korean-inspired rendition with kimchi, pine nuts, and lots of fresh ginger.