Get a fresh take on your customers' favorite salads
Diners expect to see classic salads on the menu. The challenge lies in making yours memorable enough to spark return visits. The chefs at the Kraft Culinary Centre tackled classic salads, giving them star treatment with just a hint of makeover for maximum impact. "Some of those iconic salads—with many of them dating back to the fifties and even earlier—tend to be a bit dated," says Trevor Williams, corporate sous chef, Kraft Foodservice. "We kept the salad profiles intact, but refined a few of the flavors and textures." The resulting recipes provide the ultimate standard-bearers for the classic salads your customers love.
So, what are the most popular salads? To ensure that we give you what your customers look for, the Kraft chefs based this recipe development on the "2013 Top Salad Formats on Canadian Menus" report, sponsored by Technomic's MenuMonitor.
Caesar Salad in a Parmesan Bowl
Look again at those numbers—the Caesar salad's popularity is staggering. If done right, it can bring customers back for more. Our chefs keep the build classic, relying on Kraft Creamy Caesar Dressing for its rich, flavorful profile. As a fun point of distinction, they serve it in a crisp Parmesan bowl.
Dressing plus one: add minced anchovy
Specialty Salad: Wedge
The Wedge, a steakhouse staple, has seen a tremendous resurgence on menus. Here, our chefs add premium touches with crisp-fried prosciutto, salami and fresh basil. "This classic iceberg salad is a great profit generator. Adding an original spin elevates it to signature status without compromising its original profile," says Chef Williams. To keep it classic, they rely on Kraft Blue Cheese Dressing for its full-bodied, creamy flavor.
Dressing plus one: add puréed almond
Our chefs feature the much-loved ingredients in this iconic salad, but refine the profile for a distinct offering. Roasted red pepper introduces a sweet, acidic element, and beautiful Serrano ham adds its complex flavor and premium value. They turn to Kraft Catalina Dressing, with its sweet tomato tones, to balance the savory notes in both the blue cheese and the ham.
Dressing plus one: add Kraft Barbecue Sauce
With this menu standby, our chefs don't stray too far from the classic. They satisfy traditionalists with familiar ingredients—greens, tomato, cucumber, red onion and carrot. Pleasing flavor surprises come from fried eggplant croutons and a lively dressing that sees Kraft Balsamic Vinaigrette blended with dried cranberries.
Dressing plus one: add maple syrup
Chef Salad with Prosciutto and Turkey
Early iterations of this entrée salad classic include smoked ox tongue and watercress. Today, it's a hearty salad, perfect for protein lovers. Our chefs add marinated mustard seeds for an added textural component. "Marinating them makes them plump, and so they pop on the palate," says Chef Williams. They use Kraft Honey Mustard Dressing for its delicate balance of sweet honey and tangy yellow mustard.
Dressing plus one: add orange marmalade
A bowlful of classic Mediterranean flavors is a wonderful thing. Greens, Kalamata olives, tomato, feta, red onion and oregano deliver on flavor expectations while pepperoncini adds a hint of vinegary heat. Kraft Greek Vinaigrette with Feta lends a much-needed bracing tartness to the salad.
Dressing plus one: halve lemon and grill, cut side down; squeeze caramelized juice into dressing
How do you present the familiar and well loved without it seeming well worn? For the spinach salad, replace the traditional red onion with crisp onion rings. And sub the overdone hard-boiled egg with a flavor-forward deviled egg starring Grey Poupon Country Dijon Mustard and Kraft Mayo with Olive Oil. The salad is tossed in Kraft Ranch Dressing, famous for its rich, creamy flavor with hints of chervil and parsley.
Dressing plus one: add cayenne