by Bianca Drennan, ND
This is not your typical Cobb salad full of bacon and blue cheese. This is a vibrant, fresh, disease-fighting, and skin boosting version.
There are so many reasons to love this salad. First off, it is full of gorgeous colours, which means it is full of nutrients. Secondly, it is adaptable based on the season. For now, I’ve included spring vegetables since they are at their peak ripeness and nutrition. In the warmer months, I use zucchini, tomatoes, and eggplant. In fall/winter I often include beets, sweet potatoes, or butternut squash. I even change up the greens based on what is in season and what mood I am in. The dressing works with anything. Another reason to love this salad is how incredible it is for skin. The omega-3 fatty acids from the salmon (eat the skin!), egg, and anchovies are essential to achieve a healthy glow and fight inflammation, as well as maintaining a protective skin barrier. The avocado acts similarly, but instead contains omega-9 fatty acids, which are anti-inflammatory and moisturizing. There are also quite a few herbs in the dressing which should not go unnoticed – they are full of detoxifying properties and antioxidants, both essential for skin health. The asparagus in this version acts as a diuretic, which helps flush toxins out of the liver, contributing to a clearer complexion.
This isn’t a lame, limp lettuce salad. It is hearty and satisfying enough to be a main dish – my kind of salad. Don’t be turned off by the long list of ingredients as most of them are for the dressing, which all get tossed in a blender. Oh, and if you think you don’t like anchovies, give them a try in this dressing – I promise you won’t regret it. This salad can easily be made vegetarian by leaving out the salmon and anchovies, however you would be losing out on a significant amount of the highly absorbable omega-3 fatty acids that the salad offers.
- 1/4 of a ripe avocado, slice remaining avocado for salad
- 2 green onions, chopped
- 1/4 cup tarragon leaves
- 2 tbsp chopped chives
- 2 tbsp chopped basil
- 2 tbsp chopped parsley
- 2 anchovy fillets (in oil or salt), chopped
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp plain plant-based yogurt (coconut or almond), or regular yogurt if preferred
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 head (or so) of red-leaf lettuce, or alternative if preferred (romaine, bibb, green leaf)
- 1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
- 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
- 1 small bunch cooked asparagus (steamed/grilled/roasted), halved
- 4 soft or hard-boiled eggs, halved
- 4 cooked skin-on salmon fillets (steamed/grilled/roasted/seared), flaked into bite-size pieces
First, make the dressing. Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Thin the dressing with water, a little at a time, until you have reached the consistency of heavy cream. This can also be done in an immersion blender. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Arrange lettuce on a platter or in a large serving bowl. Drizzle with half the dressing and season with salt and pepper. Top the lettuce with the fennel, red onion, cooked asparagus, eggs, salmon, and remaining avocado. Drizzle remaining dressing over top and season with salt and pepper. Option to toss salad gently to distribute the dressing and other ingredients.
Dr. Bianca Drennan ND, provides nutritional consulting and naturopathic medicine services at Pacific Wellness and is available for appointments five days a week. If you would like to detoxify and trim your body, improve your lifestyle or address certain health concerns please call us at 416-929-6958 or submit your online appointment request to arrange your initial appointment. The naturopathic appointments are covered by most employee benefits.