Nothing beats perfectly ripe tomatoes drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, with a twist of freshly ground black pepper. But summer isn't the only time for great-tasting salads, as these three delicious winter creations prove.
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Cauliflower & Beet Salad 4 cups small cauliflower florets 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, divided 1 tsp. Dijon mustard 1 Tbs. red wine vinegar tsp. kosher salt 8 cups mixed salad greens 1 cup diced cooked beets cup unsalted, roasted sunflower seeds Total Time: 20 minutes Check your supermarket's produce case for vacuum-packed cooked beets. To turn the salad into the perfect dinner for a chilly winter evening, just add roasted chicken or fish. Preheat the oven to 450[degrees]F. * Toss the cauliflower florets with 1 Tbs. of the oil on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast until lightly browned in spots, 10-15 minutes. Remove and allow to cool. * In a large bowl, whisk the mustard, vinegar, and salt with the remaining 2 Tbs. of oil. * Toss the salad greens with the dressing. Top with the beets, cauliflower, and sunflower seeds. * Serves 4. Per Serving (3V2 cups): Calories: 210 | Sodium: 240 mg | Total Fat: 15 g Sat Fat: 2 g | Carbs: 15 g | Protein: 6 g | Fiber: 6 g Roasted Sweet Potato & Scallion Salad 1 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled 2 bunches scallions, white and pale-green parts cut into 1/2-inch pieces 2 Tbs. canola oil, divided 1 Tbs. reduced-sodium soy sauce 1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar 1 tsp. brown sugar 8 cups mixed salad greens cup roasted and salted pumpkin seeds Total Time: 25 minutes Sweet, savory, and crunchy. Every bite contains a surprise. Preheat the oven to 450[degrees]F. * Cut the sweet potatoes into 1/3-inch-thick sticks. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the sweet potatoes and scallions with 1 Tbs. of the oil. Roast until the sweet potatoes are tender, 10-12 minutes. Remove and allow to cool. * In a large bowl, whisk the soy sauce, vinegar, and sugar with the remaining 1 Tbs. of oil. * Toss the salad greens with the dressing. Top with the sweet potatoes, scallions, and pumpkin seeds. * Serves 4. Per Serving (3 cups): Calories: 2401 Sodium: 250 mg | Total Fat: 11 g Sat Fat: 1 g | Carbs: 31 g | Protein: 7 g | Fiber: 8 g Baby Kale Salad 1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice 2 Tbs. minced shallot 1/4 tsp. kosher salt 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil 1/2 lb. baby kale 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese Freshly ground black pepper, to taste Total Time: 10 minutes This is one of the few salads you can make hours ahead or time. It gets better as the flavors meld and the kale softens in the dressing. And don't be stingy with the black pepper. You'll be amazed at the extra flavor pop it delivers. In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, shallot, salt, and oil. * Toss the kale in the dressing with the Parmesan cheese and season with plenty of black pepper. (If you can't find baby kale, you can use Tuscan kale. Before tossing with the dressing, remove and discard the large, center stems. Then, working in batches of about 8 leaves, stack the leaves and cut them crosswise into thin strips.) * Serves 4. Per Serving (3 cups): Calories: 110 | Sodium: 230 mg | Total Fat: 9 g Sat Fat: 2 g | Carbs: 7 g | Protein: 4 g | Fiber: 1 g