Salad Girl + Dumpling & Strand=Salad Love- By Kelly McManus
SALAD GIRL, KISMET AND SOBA = A FOOD LOVE STORY
Kismet is an awesome word. Meaning destiny or fate, it’s an event that, when it happens to you, you simply want to revel in it ... and then say the word all day long. Kismet is what happened to us 3 years ago, and reveals itself in this recipe.
But first some backstory.
Back in September 2014, some friends and I bought tickets to local public artist, Seitu Jones, at his public art event CREATE: The Community Meal. The event gathered some 2,000 people at a ½ mile long table in the middle of Saint Paul’s Victoria Street for a civic dinner table conversation about food access, food justice, and healthy eating. It was an amazing community event: beautiful, thoughtful, accessible, engaging and delicious. We felt lucky to be a part of the conversation and experience. And while I’m a bit hazy on all the deliciousness we ate that day, we definitely had a moment with the salad dressing.
Yes. I, too, am laughing out loud with the absurdity of it all.
Bright, lemony and sweet, the salad dressing was unique and -- we all agreed – outstanding. So it was that we left that day, not only inspired by the work needing to be done in our community around food, but also armed with a new salad dressing love: Salad Girl. Some days are lucky days indeed.
My husband and I quickly adopted Salad Girl into our salad routine at home, and even our 16-year-old son said he would eat salad everyday if it had Salad Girl on it. At any given time, you could find 2 or 3 bottles in our fridge. I was always curious about who created this fun and fresh brand.
Flash forward to November 2015, and Jeff and I are starting to develop what will eventually be Dumpling & Strand. We were floating through an industry tradeshow as guests, hoping to soak up any information and insight about being a food producer. It’s here where I surprisingly see – and meet – the owner of Salad Girl, Pam Powell. I’m a bit gushy as I tell her about how my family loves her product and how we discovered it. Pam, being the kind human she is, hugs me as I leave her booth and lets me take a selfie (for my son, I tell her). Not only is she sunshine personified, she's a smart businesswoman who has been carving out her niche in the food world for a number of years. Best of all: she shares her knowledge and experience. Ever since that night, she’s been a mentor to us, answering question after question about the wholesale grocery business, distributors and production. And there seems no limit to her generosity, as I’ve watched her be this to many other companies like ours.
All this leads me to now. Last week we had the good fortune to have Pam create a cold noodle salad recipe (and video!) featuring her Toasted Sesame Ginger dressing using our Wild Rice Minnesoba. This deliciously nutty and fresh salad can be made with either of our sobas with excellent results. We’ll have recipe cards at the markets this weekend with any purchase. You can find Salad Girl at just about any grocery store in the refrigerated produce section.
I like to believe that the power of eating together and Pam’s fresh Lemony Herb dressing led to this moment. I can’t wait to see what another three years will bring to this whole dang love affair. It feels like the kismet has only just begun.
Salad Girl + Wild Rice Minnesoba noodle salad recipe>>
Fun video of assembly>>
PS: I now have 6 containers of Salad Girl in our fridge at the moment. And counting. Get on the Salad Girl bandwagon: you won’t be disappointed.