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posted: 9/15/2011 6:00 AM

Chopped salad for all

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  • It doesn't matter which comes first, the chicken or the egg, when gobbling up this lean protein salad.

      It doesn't matter which comes first, the chicken or the egg, when gobbling up this lean protein salad.
    Alicia Ross/Desperation Dinners


Do you like chopped salads? I do! I love that with a chopped salad, you get a little bit of everything in every bite. When my kids were younger, a chopped salad was a sure way to get a variety of things in their dinner without turned-up noses and scowls. My oldest wouldn't eat eggs, but boiled, chopped and tossed in a salad, she would scarf them up. My youngest hated tomatoes, but finely chopped and tossed with lettuce, cukes and carrots? Suddenly they weren't so bad.

For some picky kids, the "mixed up food thing" simply will not work. For my kids, the appeal had a lot to do with topping the salad with a yummy homemade dressing. (Today's Creamy Dijon Dressing takes just 5 minutes from start to finish!)

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Chopped salads aren't just kid stuff. Now that I'm just cooking for myself, I often throw all the salad ingredients on a big chopping block, give it a couple of whacks and toss everything lightly with my favorite dressing.

Today's recipe is a perfect chopped salad recipe, packed full of great lean protein and lots of veggies. You can substitute whatever veggies you prefer, but to my mind, the more, the merrier.

For a perfect boiled egg every time, check out our method, plus several ingenious ideas from readers, at

Suggested menu: The Chicken and The Egg Chopped Salad with a fresh Baguette with softened butter and iced herb tea.

• Beverly Mills and Alicia Ross are co-authors of "Desperation Dinners!" Write them at Desperation Dinners, c/o United Media, 200 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10016, or More at Desperation Dinners Web site at

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