I don’t often think of myself as having “signature” characteristics or likes. I don’t have a signature color (although I wear a lot of green, and black figures prominently in my wardrobe as well). I don’t have a signature fragrance. I like a variety of perfumes and colognes. But as we go through life, we all find ourselves gravitating to some things again and again. I think I can safely say that I have a signature salad because this really is my favorite, and the recipe I go to most often when I need a green and leafy element in any meal.
So, one of the few recipes I would tag with the term “signature:”
Mixed spring greens, or baby spinach leaves
Thinly sliced red onion rings, separated
Fresh cilantro leaves (I like lots of cilantro!)
Craisins, or you can substitute fresh seedless red grapes or raisins
Roasted Pecan halves
Crumbled Feta cheese (be generous)
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Salad dressing of your choice (creamy poppy seed, huckleberry, or wine vinagrette work well with these flavors.)
You can use as much or as little of each ingredient as you like. I would suggest a ratio of salad greens and the remaining ingredients in a proportionate amount: half greens to the remaining ingredients. The feta cheese and pecans provide a savory flavor, while the craisins or alternate fruit adds just the right balance of sweetness. You can also make this a dinner salad by adding sautéed shrimp or grilled fillet of salmon or halibut, flaked into bite-sized pieces. The contrast between the chilled greens and the hot grilled or sautéed seafood creates a perfect light but satisfying summer entree.