Do you serve salad before, after, or with your entree? In France and Italy, salads are often served at the end of meals. For many years, American restaurants and especially catered events have placed salads at the start of the menu.
This was a recent topic of conversation at our house. We were mainly interested in the reasons why salads should be served at the beginning or end of the meal.
Ed thought it might have to do with the interaction of wine and vinegar. His theory was that you wait until the end of the meal so you can enjoy your wine without the vinegar.
Penny has been reading about vinegar as an aid to digestion and use as a sort of antacid and added the possibility of salad with a vinaigrette dressing being used as a digestive aid.
A tour of the topic around the cyber world found it an often asked question with a wide variety of answers – some that agreed with ours and plenty of additional thought.
- Over at the www.kitchn.com the community responded to: Cultural Differences: Salad Before or After Dinner?
- Nutritional experts at www.sharecare.com gave opinions on: Is it better to eat salad before or after your meal?
- And the chowhounds weighed in on: eat your salad after the entree?
We have three guesses as to why restaurants and caterers opt for salad as a starter, because it:
- Gets the meal underway fast
- Turns the tables quicker
- Gives diners something to eat while waiters circulate with the next course
Around here, a salad is often the meal. We add this-and-that and turn a plate of greens into lunch or supper. The photo above is from a salad we made to clean out the kitchen before we left Provincetown last September.
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Words: Penny & Ed Cherubino
Photos: ©2012 Penny Cherubino
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