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A salad is a cold dish served as one of the courses of a meal; an entrée, a digestive, or standing alone as a light meal. Its most basic form is the green salad or tossed salad, a base of leafy greens (usually a variety of lettuce), tossed with or bedded under assorted vegetables, fruits, nuts, or legumes.

However, other foods, including pasta, potatoes, fish and meat, when served in a similar manner to the green salad, are also called salads, as in tuna-fish salad, egg salad, and potato salad.

There are a range of well-known specialty or gourmet salads, and some of these have their own names, such as the Waldorf Salad, watercress salad, and edible flower salad.