When I first started being the person in charge of figuring out what was for dinner for more than just myself, it was a real challenge. My husband and I have very different tastes and preferences. The smell of most cheeses make him gag, while one of my favorite single girl dinners was a glass of wine with a good smoked gouda or some XXX sharp cheddar. Back then he would have been happy eating chicken for every meal, while I wouldn’t mind if I never had it again. Then there was salad. We all know we’re supposed to eat more veggies, and salad is a great way to get more of them. He would try to eat it, but always gave up after a couple of bites. Now we eat salad almost every single day, sometimes twice a day and he actually loves it!
How did it happen? First I tried out different vegetables. Instead of our usual Romain lettuce, I got different local greens like wild arugula, baby spinach, mesclun mixes and butterhead lettuce. We also got heirloom varieties of tomatoes, like the Green Zebra and Cherokee Purple, local carrots and black radishes. My husband was eating salad at this point, but it still seemed like something we were eating because we knew it was good for us, not something we craved and loved. The final touch happened accidentally. We had a wedding favor that we thought was too pretty to open. It was a bottle of olive oil with herbs in it, topped with a piece of burlap and it was decoration in our kitchen for over a year. Then one day I ran out of olive oil and decided to sacrifice our beautiful bottle. That bit of herb-infused oil completely transformed the salad. Thank you Lisa!
So, the secret to getting your husband (or at least my husband) to love salad is to get a variety of local (organic, if possible) greens and vegetables and top them with your own homemade herb-infused olive oil. Do you have any secrets to making salad enjoyable?
Herb-Infused Olive Oil
- 12 ounces olive oil (we use LA Cuisine Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
- 1/2 sun-dried tomato
- 1 branch rosemary
- 5 cloves garlic, halved
Add herbs to a bottle (green or brown glass is best), cover with olive oil and top with a cork. Let sit for at least a week before using so that all the yummy herb flavors infuse into the oil.
For salad, add about 1/2 tablespoon oil per serving and a touch of ground sea salt to your salad to bring out the herb flavors even more. I like to put everything in a large salad bowl and use my “salad hands” to toss it all together so the oil coats everything evenly.
We also use this oil in pizza dough making because it gives a nice herb flavor to the dough without changing the texture.