My niece Olivia loves to cook. Two of her favorite things to make are nori rolls and fresh salad rolls. We spent time together last week and she made this lovely salad.

I was voting for trying to make a smashed raspberry and balsamic vinaigrette, but Olivia’s favorite salad dressing is ranch. I made a vegan approximation,with tofu, avocado and dill, which she loved. However, I didn’t feel like my first try was quite good enough to post. That recipe has moved into the development stage. I am not leaving you without a dressing, though. Molly of Clean Food Dirty Girl has a delicious recipe for vegan ranch.

Before you throw iceberg out the window, let’s talk about it. This is an interesting example of how knowing the energetic properties of a food can be beneficial. Iceberg does not have much going for it from a nutritional perspective. However, it has an incredibly refreshing and hydrating quality. It’s perfect for summer and those times when we really need a good crunch and a quality that renews and lightens us. Increasingly, our lives have a lot of stress and pressure. The qualities that iceberg lettuce embodies can really help balance this. Just something to consider.

Olivia’s Summer Salad

5-6 leaves iceberg lettuce; washed, torn and spun
1/2 cup thinly sliced red cabbage
1/3 cucumber, washed and sliced
6 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half or quarters
handful of green beans, cut in thirds and blanched

Mix everything together.

Other Favorite Add-Ins:

fresh corn
fresh green peas
toasted pumpkin seeds
grated carrot
thin green apple slices