The Boutique Salad Nigella Lawson Can't Get Enough Of

Because salads and the ingredients needed to make them are often found in the cold food section of any supermarket, it would make sense to just assume salads didn't exist before any proper form of refrigeration did. But the truth, is they've been a part of the human diet for much, much longer than that. 

HuffPost points out that the first salad was likely first served and popularized during the Roman Empire, when greens were covered and tossed with a liquid made of salt and oil. And while they withered in popularity during the Dark Ages, salads made a comeback during the Middle Ages or the 11th century, when they were made with raw vegetables, herbs, and flowers. In fact, we have the legendary William Shakespeare to thank for the term "salad days."

It was in the 20th century that the salad as a dish really came into its own. Sauces and dressings became more inventive, and more ingredients were tossed in to make the salad more flavorful and substantial, per What's Cooking America. One salad, the Cobb, came about because the manager of The Brown Derby in Los Angeles needed to find a way to use up the restaurant's leftovers. But what salads do celebrity chefs turn to when they're looking for a bowl of crunchy veggies?

Nigella Lawson enjoys a simple carrot and peanut salad

Given the organic way in which Roman salads morphed into the different types of salads we enjoy today, it's not surprising Nigella Lawson enjoys a salad that's bereft of the leafy greens some of us may feel should be an essential part of any salad.

Per her website, Lawson's favorited salad is made up of just two ingredients — carrots and peanuts — and is a meaningful blast from her past. The dish was originally served at a London restaurant known as the Rainbow Room, and Lawson says it was a dish that her mother loved and made regularly. "Its ingredients list may sound odd, but this is a combination that not only works but becomes addictive," Lawson warns.

She adds: "Don't be alarmed at the amount of vinegar. The astringency of the dressing against the fulsome oiliness of the nuts and, in turn, nutty sweetness of the carrots, is the whole point." 

If you're not a fan of two-ingredient salads, one Nigella fan suggests adding parsley, mint, or coriander to the mix. Another recommends adding crushed garlic cloves, cheese, parsley, and celery.