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Salads of Middle America

In between gorging on raw bacon and red velvet cupcakes, I’m usually on a diet. And never more so than on book tour, when the enforced sitting around (in the car! In your friend’s suburban apartment!) leads to almost certain … Read More

By / March 15, 2007
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In between gorging on raw bacon and red velvet cupcakes, I’m usually on a diet. And never more so than on book tour, when the enforced sitting around (in the car! In your friend’s suburban apartment!) leads to almost certain extra poundage. Thus, an obsession with chain restaurant salads. I’m from New York, and thus never stepped into a chain restaurant- an Arby’s or Applebees- until boyfriends started taking me on road trips. The concentrated deliciousness was overwhelming- as if a whole laboratory of scientists was hired to dowse the food in just the right combination of tastes. Which of course they had. Equally beloved is the chain restaurant belief that anything (from steak to ice-cream) put on lettuce makes something healthy. Here’s a list of my three favorite chain restaurants, for salads, on tour. Thank you, chains, for convincing me I am eating responsibly. 1. Applebees. To the road-tripper, Applebees is an oasis, a siren song of gargantuan portions orgasmically described. Their menus are pure food porn. And the salads, torso sized, heaped with delicious fried things. My heart, be still. 2. McDonalds. Not as good as Applebees, but way more frequent. The oriental chicken salad is pretty good- the lettuce preservative-pumped into freshness, and chicken vat-tenderized. Without the dressing, its probably only mildly bad for you. 3. Dennys. Chicken McNuggets atop iceberg lettuce does not a salad make.

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