Salad, what are you?

Since the dawn of mankind, human beings have questioned the world that surrounds us. Is there intelligent life on other planets? How did this universe begin? Is McTavish stuck in a continuous state of construction? Do we have free will? Yet, one question has never been answered by the great philosophers and scientists, such as Plato and Newton. A question so subtle that even great minds of the likes of Albert Einstein and William Shatner have never bothered to ask: What is a salad?

The McGill Tribune is here to serve as a guide through the world of salads. Though our work is based on thorough research, it is entirely up to the individual to decide how he or she defines a salad. The following three recipes rewrite the definition, if you will, by pushing the boundaries of what we know to be salad.

The Typical Salad: Kale Caesar Salad with Tofu Croutons (4 servings)



According to Encyclopedia Britannica, the earliest salads were wild greens and herbs seasoned with salt. The salt seasoning is actually where salad gets its name, salad being a derivation of salt, sal, in Latin. These wild greens that were used in antiquity—such as lettuce, spinach, and arugula—are still the main bases we use today. This green vegetable mix is what salad is known for, the boring healthy food as told by the common idiom, “Alcohol: Because no great story ever started with a salad.” Nonetheless, while many claim this meal to be healthy and boring, it is undeniably a beloved dish. 

You will need:

For the salad:

  • 350 g of ½ inch extra-firm tofu, pressed
  • 1 tbsp of olive
  • ⅛ tsp of salt
  • ½ cup of panko bread crumbs
  • 1 large bunch of kale (destemmed)

For the dressing:

  • ½  silken tofu
  • ⅓ cup and 2 tbsp of grated parmesan
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 anchovy fillets
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tsp of Dijon mustard
  • ½ tsp of Worcestershire sauce
  • ⅛ tsp of salt
  • ½ cup of dried cherries


  1. Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius. While it’s heating up, line a large baking sheet with foil.
  2. Toss cubes of extra-firm tofu with oil and salt in a medium-sized bowl. Then, season the tofu with fresh pepper. 
  3. Pour panko into another medium-sized bowl. Toss the extra-firm tofu in the panko until it is completely coated. 
  4. Arrange the extra-firm tofu in a single layer across the baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Wash the kale and remove its stalks. Slice the leaves into bite-sized pieces, then put them in a large bowl. Use your hands to crunch the leaves until the kale is tender. Drain any water that is left off the kale.
  6. Drain the water off of the silken tofu. Slice the garlic cloves and anchovy fillets. Add the silken tofu, parmesan, garlic, anchovies, lemon juice, olive oil, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire, and salt into a food processor. Blend the mixture until it’s fully combined in liquid form. Season to taste with fresh pepper. 
  7. Drizzle the dressing over the kale and mix the salad. Sprinkle the dried cherries, parmesan, and baked tofu “croutons.” You’ve got a classic salad! 

 (Recipe adapted from


Is This Also Called A Salad? American Macaroni Salad (6 servings)



A respite from the non-filling joke of a meal that is the traditional salad, another type of salad is called the “bound salad.” Bound salads are made of hearty ingredients, such as chicken and potatoes, and are held together by a thick, dressing-like mayonnaise. This is where we start to question the boundaries of salad—how is this unusual combination of ingredients placed in the same category as the mighty caesar or the classic mediterranean? The only similarity is that they both contain salad dressing. This is like calling chicken noodle soup a type of pasta dish, because they both contain spaghetti. But it is up to you, dear reader, to decide if you would classify this as a salad. 

You will need:

For the salad:

  • 2 cups of elbow macaroni
  • ⅓ cup diced celery
  • ¼ cup minced red onion
  • 1 tbsp. Minced flat-leaf parsley
  • ½ cup vine-ripened tomato

For the dressing:

  • ½ cup mayo
  • ¾ dry mustard
  • 1 ½ tsp of sugar
  • 1 ½ tbsp of apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp sour cream
  • ½ tsp kosher salt 

For seasoning:

  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper


  1. Cook the elbow macaroni in boiling water. Once cooked, rinse the pasta and then drain the water off in a colander. 
  2. Mince the red onion, then soak in cold water for five minutes. Drain the water.
  3. Dice ⅓ cup of celery and a vine-ripened tomato and mince a tablespoon of flat-leaf parsley.
  4. Combine the macaroni, onion, celery, parsley, and tomato in your salad bowl.
  5. In another bowl, whisk together the mayo, mustard, sugar, vinegar, sour cream, and salt. 
  6. Pour this dressing into your salad bowl and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  7. And now, you’ve got a salad! This can be kept in the fridge and eaten for up to three days after its preparation date.

(Adapted from


The Abomination Known as Dessert Salad: Oreo Salad (6 servings)



In the fringes of the definition of salad comes what might be where both mankind and salad have gone too far. The dessert salad completely destroys the two possible definitions of salad seen so far, because it is neither a healthy meal, like a green salad, nor an all-American Thanksgiving dish, like the bound salad. Many will decide that this is not a salad—this cannot be a salad. But to say that this is not a salad is to question the status of all salads, even the caesar and the macaroni. This does have a base—even if that base is a cream filled cookie sandwich—and a dressing, so why can it not be a salad?

You will need:

For the salad:

  • 15 Oreos

For the “dressing”:

  • 1 container of whipped cream (8 oz)
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 1 package of instant vanilla pudding mix (3.4 oz)


  1. Stir the milk and vanilla pudding together until the two are well mixed.
  2. Add whipped topping and then cookies into the mix and stir.
  3. Cover and refrigerate until thickened and chilled (around an hour or two).
  4. You’ve got a salad?

(Adapted from

One Comment

  1. Amber Noelle Vicencio

    I love the I know where the word salad came from..Add on to my bragging rights..

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