Visual appeal, aroma, flavor, and texture are powerful factors when it comes to food, though there are different camps on just how these align and weigh into decision making. In my (very humble) experience, the first three are fairly universal in their importance and influence... with no particular order. It’s the last that is kind of a tipping point, either way. Personally, texture can be off-putting at times, yet I’m always one to give it a go... let taste prevail. However, I know others that won’t come near any food that is texturally challenged... mushy, goopy, slimy, soft, etc. Whatever the particular textural ailment might be, the food is vetoed.
I believe the one texture that IS universally beloved, however, is crunch. There’s just something that is so appealing about this satisfying element that kind of makes it its own separate criteria (in my book, anyway)... a fifth factor, if you will, in this line up.
While there are loads of foods that provide a powerful crunch factor, fresh fruits and veggies kind of corner this market when it comes to making healthy choices. And chop... or crunch salads are a personal favorite for getting the optimal balance... mixing color and cut for visual appeal; adding bits of herbs and a citrus dressing for a subtle, fresh aroma; mixing compatible elements to enhance flavor; and getting that great pop of crunch (and texture) with raw veggies and fresh fruits.
Here Stemilt’s Fuji apples provide that satisfying, fresh pop of sweet crunch that balances beautifully against the more robust nature of raw cauliflower florets and purple cabbage. A little pop of fresh celery and flat-leaf parsley provide that aromatic bit of goodness with little bits of sweetness added to beautifully meld it all together... bits of red and yellow pepper, dried cranberries and lightly toasted walnuts. A simple olive oil-lemon dressing infused with a touch of honey dresses it all up for an easy, fresh, healthy, satisfying crrrunnnccch salad.
For recipe details, visit Stemilt’s blog, The Stem.
Disclaimer: While I am being compensated by Stemilt Growers as a guest contributor to The Stem, the views and/or opinions expressed on A Savory Nest are my own.