Rabbit food? No way – salads often get a raw deal from the meat-preferring public, but here are 15 vibrantly imaginative salads – available at various restaurants in KL and Selangor – that pack a powerfully flavourful punch. It’s time to turn over a new leaf!

1. Chicken Rice Salad at Chai Bar

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One of Malaysia’s most beloved recipes is turned into a salad at the new Chai Bar in Oasis Ara Damansara – this minimal-guilt creation that showcases the outlet’s own-poached chicken breast with crunchy red rice, bean sprouts, onions, cucumber, baby spinach and a soy sauce dressing.

Find: Chai Bar directory listing here

See Also: Chai Bar at Oasis Ara Damansara: Restaurant Review

2. Lingonberry Gel Salad at Topshelf

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A salad that tastes like dessert? Yep,  thanks to its garnishing – a thick, nectarous gel of lingonberry and an invisible spray of elderflower and extra virgin olive oil, furnishing a fruity flavour and floral fragrance to enliven the leaves and spears. Topshelf, a terrific European restaurant in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, recently served this as part of a special chef’s table menu – let’s hope they put it on the permanent menu someday.

Find: Topshelf directory listing here

See Also: Chef’s Table Dinners at Topshelf,TTDI: Restaurant Review

3. Catalan Watermelon Salad at Mercat

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Whoever said ‘better dead than red’ clearly never tried this enjoyably refreshing Catalan mix of crimson-hued watermelon, tomatoes and goat’s cheese at Bangsar’s new Mercat restaurant.

Find: Mercat directory listing here

See Also: Mercat Catalan at Telawi, Bangsar: Restaurant Review

4. Gelato Salad at Whimsical

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Whimsical is a cafe where ice cream made in the traditional Italian fashion is imaginatively infused into the menu. Basil gelato becomes a cooling, who-needs-pesto-sauce dressing for this tomato salad with Japanese cucumber strips, lettuce, chives, goat’s cheese and balsamic reduction.

Find: Whimsical directory listing here

See Also: Review: Whimsical Gelateria and Caffe by Cielo Dolci at Solaris Dutamas

5. Malaysian Mozzarella Salad at The Kitchen Table

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Locally sourced ingredients come to the forefront with this Malaysian-produced mozzarella by Bright Cow (less milky-rich than the best ones out there, but still enjoyable) combined with tomato jam (terrific _ thick and tangy-sweet), vivacious Thai basil pesto and crisp shaved zucchini.

Find: The Kitchen Table directory listing here

See Also: Review: The Kitchen Table Restaurant and Bakery at Damansara Kim, Petaling Jaya

6. Chicken Boobies Salad at Velocity

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The name of this creation on the menu might raise a chuckle, but Velocity is super-serious about serving wholesome fare like this chicken breast salad with eggs, veggies and roasted sesame sauce – after all, this café in Ampang targets cyclists, who are supremely passionate about keeping fit and eating right.

Find: Velocity directory listing here

See Also: Velocity at Ampang: Restaurant Review

7. Smoked Duck Salad at Ante Kitchen and Bar

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Don’t duck the duck – Ante serves smoked slices of fowl meat with toasted almond flakes and sun-dried tomatoes, beautifully dressed, supplying a confident, compelling balance of flavours that extends this salad’s allure far beyond KL’s leaf-lovers.

Find: Ante Kitchen and Bar directory listing here

8. Salad Perigourdine at Rendez-Vous

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OK, this one is debatably barely a salad, since it’s packed with sinfully fatty components, but it’s irrefutably delicious, with succulent Parma ham, unctuous semi-cooked foie gras terrine, smoked duck breast, sliced pork bacon, and the surprise star – a ramekin of potently flavoursome chicken liver pate.

Find: Rendez-Vous directory listing here

See Also: Rendez-Vous French Restaurant: Restaurant Review

9. Moroccan Salad at Hammam Tea Room

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We turn to North Africa now, the inspiration for this Moroccan medley of beetroots, carrots, potatoes, rice and hard-boiled egg – the perfect light lunch at Publika’sHammam Tea Room.

Find: Hammam Tea Room directory listing here

See Also: Review: Hammam Tea Room at Publika, Solaris Dutamas

10. Egg and Avocado Salad at Juan Valdez Cafe

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Creamy comfort; that’s the theme for this salad, which showcases some of our favourite ingredients, generously laden with luscious avocado slices, plus a runny mollet egg, artichokes, marinated salmon gravlax, mesclun, chives and parmesan.

Find: Juan Valdez Cafe directory listing here

See Also: Review: Juan Valdez Cafe at The Intermark

11. Vietnamese Salad at Cute Ball Kitchen

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Home-cooked fare at its best: This Vietnamese salad – painstakingly prepared by the couple who founded PJ-based supper club Cute Ball Kitchen – scores top marks. Light and exceptionally easy to gobble up, wholesome-tasting and ravishingly nuanced with fresh veggies, seafood, meat, herbs and nuts.

Find: Cute Ball Kitchen directory listing here

See Also: Cute Ball Kitchen at Paramount Garden: Restaurant Review

12. Salad Nicoise at Jibby & Co

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Pretty as a picture: We like this visually tantalising version of Salad Nicoise that substitutes tuna with blue swimmer crab meat, combined with tomatoes, corn, new potatoes, half-boiled eggs, french beans, baby romaine, onions and boiled eggs with a sesame dressing.

Find: Jibby & Co directory listing here

See Also: Review: Jibby & Co at Empire Shopping Gallery

13. Prawn and Pork Salad at Kafe Vietnam

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We’re instant fans of the salad of boiled prawns and pork belly, served with strands of chewy ‘jelly’ and crackers brought over from Vietnam. It’s an immensely fun snack, ideal for sharing with friends or family members to whet the appetite.

Find: Kafe Vietnam directory listing here

See Also: Kafe Vietnam at Puchong: Restaurant Review

14. Chicken and Potato Salad at Wondermama

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Who says a salad can’t be a full meal? Wondermama’s signature salad of cubed potatoes, fried chicken, tomatoes and veggies would work well even as a main course.

Find: Wondermama directory listing here

See Also: Review: Wondermama X at Avenue K

15. Spicy Fuji Apple Salad at Konscious

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Finally, looking for something to really spice up your meal? Salads can be ferociously fiery too, as proven by this mix of Fuji apple slices, mint and chillies by a trail-blazing organic café.

Find: Konscious Cafe directory listing here

See Also: Konscious Health Food Cafe at Damansara Perdana: Restaurant Review

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