Over the years the New York Times has devoted a respectable amount of their time and energy toward covering the rise and fall of the chopped salad, the most evenly distributed and well-diced of healthy dishes. Today, however, the Times outdid itself with an in-depth look at contemporary chopped-salad culture. Chopped salad has gone the way of the gourmet cupcake—it's mainstream, with second-rate versions available around every corner. For chopped salads, rock bottom is Duane Reade:
It has come to this: chopped salad in a drugstore. It’s the final frontier for a lunchtime fad that started in the city’s fine-dining restaurants, spread to delis and cafes, and took a downward dip to fast casual restaurants like T.G.I. Friday’s, Quiznos and Arby’s. Subway recently announced that it would serve any of its six-inch subs as a chopped salad, minus the bread. In other words, New Yorkers can now get a chopped salad just about any place except a gasoline station.
Well, let's not dwell on where chopped salad ended up, but look at where we've been. Here's everything we've learned about these dicey meals from the Times.
Chopped Salads Address a Need You Didn't Know You Had
The best inventions may be the ones that address a need, but the second-best inventions are the ones that fix problems you aren't even aware of. Luke Kingma, who listed chickpeas, banana peppers and feta cheese as some of his favorite salad ingredients, is grateful for places like Just Salad for bringing salad to the masses. “It’s nice because it’s something you can’t do at home,” he said. “You’d have to buy so many ingredients it’s just not possible.”