gluten-free, vegetables and salad, vegetarian

Giada’s Tuscan Salad

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This salad is one of the lightest yet most satisfying salad recipes out there, in my opinion.  I first saw this salad on a re-run of Giada At Home on Food Network and I knew I had to try it out.  No meat to weigh it down, but plenty of great texture and flavor to make a person feel like they are indulging themselves.  It’s officially one of my favorite salad combinations of all time.  

This salad is so good it could really be a light meal on it’s own.  Case in point:  On the evening I made this salad, my husband (who is a grill-aholic, by the way) grilled some delicious, perfect baby back ribs, chicken sausages, corn-on-the-cob, whole sweet potatoes and zucchini.  He worked at this meal for hours and it was a barbecue feast fit for a king!  Well, I decided to throw this salad together as a light accompaniment or starter. We enjoyed it so much that we ate two servings of salad each and we were spent.  We ate barbecue for days… 

Lesson learned and next time I serve this salad it will be with just a warm slice of fresh, buttered bread at the most.  It is filling. 

Also, I made just a couple of small adaptations.  The original recipe has this salad dressed with a simple homemade dressing of lemon juice and olive oil. However, I wanted a little more pizazz so I served mine with my favorite recipe for homemade balsamic vinaigrette.  I also used grated parmesan cheese that I had on hand for a topping.  

Tuscan Salad

  • 2 cups fresh green beans (about 8 oz), rinsed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 head Romaine lettuce, torn or cut 
  • 1(15 oz) can of cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup black olives, sliced
  • 1/2 half red onion, cut into thin slivers
  • homemade balsamic vinaigrette or other dressing of your choice

 1.  Cook the green beans in a boiling pot of salted water for about 2-3 minutes, until just tender.  Drain the beans and rinse with cold water and set aside. 

2. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients in layers and then, lightly toss.  Serve with dressing and enjoy.     

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