Broccoli Salad

Broccoli salad is a very versatile dish that can be made in an endless variety of ways as part of a healthy and enjoyable diet.

Ingredients
Basically you can add just about anything you want to your broccoli but here are some of the most popular ingredients:

1. Broccoli – of course. Choose fresh firm heads. You will probably need two of these for an average sized salad. Chop the stem off and cut the florettes into bite sized pieces.

2. Chopped vegetables. Choose your favorites, these could include onion, celery, carrots and cauliflower. The carrots and cauliflower add contrasting color to the mix, so just add as much as you like until it looks like a good mix.

3. You may wish to add some protein too. Crispy cooked bacon is a popular choice. Crumble it after it is cooked and cooled. You could also add cheese, cubed, crumbled or shredded. Try different colors and flavors of cheese to add more color and variety. You might want to try a blue veined cheese or a red one or good cheddar.

4. Fruit is a good addition too, either dried or fresh. For fresh fruit, try adding grapes, cranberries, chopped apple or mandarin orange pieces. The dried fruit is often raisins, though any dried fruit would do.

5. Nuts and seeds. You can add more protein and a bit of a cruch with nuts and seeds, such as sunflower seeds or walnuts, almonds, cashews and hazelnuts. Alternatively for a quick and tasty addition, add a pack of trail mix.

6. Salad dressing. Basic oil and vinegar vinaigrette is fine but you can also spice this up with different types of vinegar or added spices. You could also use any commercial style salad dressing of your choice.

7. Little extras. If you really want to make your broccoli salad different, add a few extras. These could include canned vegetable such as peas, corn or beans (black, kidney, garbanzo, waxed, etc.).
Other fresh veggies like mushrooms, chives, bean sprouts, green beans, cucumber and bell peppers.
You could also try seafood (but probably omit the bacon in this case) such as shrimp, scallops, salmon, or calamari.

To make up your salad, mix all the fruit and vegetables together in a large bowl and add the dressing. Refrigerate for a couple of hours or overnight. Add any cheese, bacon or seafood just before serving and stir up the salad again.