New York-Style Chopped Salad

  • 3 cups mixed salad greens
  • 8 whole cos leaves
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • One 14-ounce can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • One 4-ounce can pitted mixed olives
  • 2 red bell peppers, sliced
  • 2 yellow bell peppers, sliced
  • 4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and sliced
  • 2 avocados, sliced
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, cubed
  • 1 English cucumber, halved then sliced
  • 1 bunch asparagus, blanched and sliced into pieces
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 8 radishes, halved
  • Salt and ground pepper
  • Herby Ranch Dressing, recipe follows, or your favorite
  • For the herby ranch dressing
  • 1 cup (real) mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk (more as needed to reach desired consistency)
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup Italian flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 3 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and ground pepper

Lay out the greens and all the fixings in small dishes.

Have a big stainless bowl with tongs. Have everyone build their own salad by throwing what they want into the bowl. Toss and tip the salad onto a cutting board. With 2 knives, quickly chop the salad so that it's chopped into smaller pieces. Throw it back into the metal dish and toss with Herby Ranch Dressing.

Transfer to a plate and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.

For the dressing: Combine the mayonnaise, buttermilk, sour cream, parsley, chives, oregano, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce and salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Chill for a couple of hours before serving.

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