Lunch Crunch

Contrary to popular belief, I don't sit down to lunch at a fancy cafe each day. Nor do I spend an hour at the stove putting together something to nibble on as I find the perfect adjective to describe the sauce I've been writing about all morning. Most days, I'm looking for something quick and easy that is also delicious. So most days, I'm thinking about salad:

One of my favorite lunchtime options is a simple salad featuring broccoli, some nuts, some crushed Ramen Noodles (yep, you read that correctly), and a dressing that involves tossing a bunch of stuff into a jar and shaking it until dressing happens. What's great about this recipe? Well, it tastes great and that is a pretty important priority for me. But, nearly as important, it is fast to make, doesn't involve a lot of fuss, and it can be made ahead and will make enough for me to enjoy it for lunch for a week. Yep, that's really hard not to love when you're busy thinking about other food.

You could easily pair this salad with a fun grilled dish and fresh fruit and call it a perfect al fresco dinner. You could bring it to any picnic or potluck and enjoy the ooohs and aaahs. But, for me, I'm going to keep making a big batch on Sunday afternoon or Monday morning and enjoying it day after day as a very convenient lunch in the middle of a day that's devoted to thinking about great food, making great food, taking photos of great food, writing about great food, and sharing what I know about great food with you. And today, that means inviting you to share my lunch. Enjoy!

Summer Crunch Broccoli Salad

  • 5 cups chopped fresh broccoli
  • ½ cup sliced almonds
  • ½ cup sunflower kernels
  • 1 - 3 oz. package Ramen Chicken Soup Mix, uncooked
  • Flavor package from Ramen Noodles
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1/8 cup white sugar

Combine the broccoli, almonds, and sunflower kernels in a large bowl. Set aside.

Place the uncooked noodles from the Ramen Chicken Soup Mix package in a resealable plastic bag and, using your hands or the back of a large spoon, crush the noodles into small pieces. Add the crushed, uncooked noodles to the bowl with the broccoli in it.

In a small, resealable jar, combine the flavor package from the Ramen Noodles, the olive oil, the rice vinegar, and the sugar. Place the lid over the jar and shake vigorously to create a dressing. Drizzle all of the dressing over the bowl with the broccoli in it and toss well to coat. Refrigerate until ready to serve and store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

  • Yields: 6-8 servings
  • Preparation Time: 15 minutes

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