By KC Kudra
Ezine Articles

French cuisine is all about using classic cooking techniques and fresh produce to make mouthwatering dishes. French cooking is famous all over the world and dishes from French onion soup to duck a l’orange are served all over the globe.

Perhaps you are more familiar with those dishes than French salads but if you are looking for ideas for spring and summer recipes, French salads are exciting, vibrant, healthy and really flavorful.

Ideas for the Best Salads

Fruit is popular in French salads and you might find recipes calling for pear, apple or melon. Citrus dressings and vinaigrettes are also used to make French salads. Raspberries or strawberries with a balsamic vinegar glaze can be served in French salads or similar seasonal fruit with the sharpness of balsamic vinegar and perhaps some sugar and black pepper to draw out the juices.

Vegetables are always popular in salads and these might be grilled, steamed or raw. There are various recipes for potato salad and French potato salad tends to be flavored with dill or another fresh herb and served warm. Seafood, meat or poultry might also feature.

Top Ingredients for Delectable Salads

Roasted beets are another example of a popular French ingredient. What about a famous carrot salad with a lemon and mustard dressing? These salad recipes make wonderful side dishes.

Walnuts, blue cheese, fennel, cucumber, tomatoes, fresh mint and more can be combined to enhance these recipes and there are literally hundreds of French salads that you can recreate yourself. You can bulk out a salad with fava beans, lentils or another type of pulse, or you can use rice or potatoes. If you want to serve a salad as an entree, it is good to use some filling ingredients so the salad will be satisfying.

Recipe for Salad Nicoise with Seafood

This delicious authentic French salad recipe serves four people and the combination of grilled seafood, fresh salad vegetables, French vinaigrette and more is a winning mixture and this salad is really impressive, both in terms of appearance and flavor.

What you will need:

  • 16 romaine lettuce leaves
  • 12 oz salmon fillet
  • 4 hardboiled eggs
  • 16 black olives
  • 1 zucchini
  • 3/4 lb green beans
  • 8 jumbo shrimp
  • 8 sea scallops
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 4 Roma tomatoes
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons French vinaigrette
  • 8 leaves chopped fresh basil (optional)

How to make it:Cut the salmon fillet, eggs and tomatoes into quarters. Cut the zucchini into 1/4 inch slices. Shell and halve the shrimp. Cut the bell pepper into strips. Cut the beans into two inch pieces and steam them until they are al dente.

Brush 1/3 cup of the vinaigrette over the zucchini and seafood, then grill it six inches above glowing coals or over a low to moderate heat. Grill the zucchini and scallops for six minutes per side and the shrimp and salmon for four minutes per side.

Divide the lettuce, eggs, olives, beans, capers, tomatoes and bell pepper between four chilled salad plates, and then arrange the warm grilled seafood on top. Drizzle the rest of the vinaigrette over the salad and serve with the basil sprinkled over the top.

There is no doubt that French cuisine is one of the most flavorful in the world. If you want to try this cuisine for yourself, what about starting with a classic recipe like French onion soup? A recipe for the best French onion soup makes a great supper or appetizer for a dinner party and it is so easy to make. – Simple, Elegant, Perfection; Soup the Way it Was Meant to Be!