Roasted salad?! I can hear the incredulity through the internet. But don’t worry, this is good. Take a chance on me and try this one. And you don’t even really need a recipe. You kind of just put as much as you want of each thing in and let it go.
I came up with this one a couple of winters ago. I’m really a seasonal eater and I don’t want cold salad in cold weather. I want warm comfort food! But salad is really good for your immune system and I was determined to not get sick.
Roasting my salad veggies totally fits the bill when I want something warm and need another veggie serving in my day. It’s surprisingly satisfying too!
This is a combination of a tomato recipe my friend made when I visited her house once, and a warm spinach salad I had at a steak house. Let these ingredients wilt down into a nice flavorful combination. It just melts onto your tongue.
To start off, slice whatever tomatos you have on hand in half. I’ve used everything from beefsteaks to grape tomatoes for this. Just slice ’em and place them cut side up in a baking dish. These are plum tomatoes so I just sliced them in half. If I had bigger beefsteak tomatoes I’d cut them into several thick rounds.
Drizzle a little EVOO and a bit of balsamic vinegar on them, as well as a sprinkle of salt and pepper. It kind of starts out like caprese salad that way.
Then sprinkle some parmesan cheese and fresh herbs. Any fresh herb combo you like will do. Chop up about a 1/4 cup and use half of them in this stage. Today I had oregano, basil and parsley. But I’ve also had various combinations with those and rosemary, cilantro, thyme and dill too. I use whatever is nearby.
Roast in a 450 degree oven for 10 minutes. The cheese and herbs melt down into the tomatoes and those savory red orbs release their juices. My mouth is watering just describing it.
Take it out and put on the second layer. This is a handful of greens. I usually use a spring mix because I get the giant bags at Costco, but fresh spinach works just as well. Then repeat your seasoning layers: salt, pepper, EVOO, balsamic, parm, and the rest of your fresh herbs.
Return to the oven for another 5 minutes. It doesn’t take long for the greens to wilt down over the top like an antioxidant rich blanket.
Let it cool for about 5 minutes. You want to eat it warm, but those tomatoes are crazy hot right out of the oven! (Ask me how I know)
And just like that, in less than 20 minutes, you’ve got a great lunch or side dish.