Food

Building the Best Summer Salad 101

Hi!

I’m off to a slow start today since I went to bed a little later than usual last night AND it’s raining.  Rain always makes me want to stay snuggled under my covers, but I talked myself into getting up so I could get some things done before work.

First up:

Breakfast022edit017edit026edit018That’s what breakfast looked like before almond-coconut milk and peanut butter!062editMuch better 🙂

After I gobbled that down, I cleaned up a bit and then went to take Toby out and found this:064edit073edit067editPoor dog has fallen down the steps too many times and is now too afraid to go down (or up) the stairs on his own.  Good thing he’s pocket sized so we can carry him up and down 😉

Workout

 I’m feeling less than motivated to workout right now, so I’m going to do some light weight-training, which currently doesn’t seem as daunting as cardio!  I know I’ll be happy I worked out once I’ve started.

Just For Fun

I wrote this post a couple weeks ago, so I’m finally going to share it.  (All photos taken with the iPhone).

I think we’re finally at that point during the summer where it’s so hot that your face feels like it’s melting and you sweat from just opening the door. Once it’s gotten to this point, the mere thought of heavy and warm dishes makes me feel over-heated, especially when I spend 7+ hours outside each day. I have really fallen in love with fun, fresh, summery salads this summer and want to share how I put them together! This isn’t your typical garden salad, or “rabbit food” as my friends so lovingly refer to it as. No, these types of salad are versatile, refreshing and the perfect meal to keep you cool during the heat waves! Oh, and all of the water-rich fruits and veggies will keep you hydrated to help beat bloating, because who wants that during bikini season?

Perfect Summer Salads
Step One: The lettuce base.20130702-155158.jpg I can say that I’m truly not a lettuce fan. I always say that lettuce is just a vehicle for everything else you want to eat, but it’s a necessary evil, I suppose. The only exception to that rule is arugula. I love, love, LOVE arugula and would take it over romaine lettuce or spring mix any day. We happened to have a box of arugula in the fridge today, so I helped myself to a couple big handfuls of the spicy, earthy tasting arugula.
Step Two: Add chopped veggies20130702-155310.jpgThis is where things get interesting. Add any veggies that you choose! Today I chose carrots, cucumber, tomato (well, it’s a fruit) and a baby yellow pepper.
Step Three: Add protein.20130702-155511.jpgToday it was chicks peas, but I might add quinoa, grilled chicken, or a hard-boiled egg, which I did end up adding once I was finished making the salad.
Step Four: Add fruit!20130702-155850.jpgIt might sound strange at first, but adding fruit to salads balances out the saltiness of the chick peas (and cheese, which I add next) and makes the salad so refreshing. Watermelon pairs perfectly with arugula, but really any fruit works. I like strawberries, peaches, apricots, blueberries and oranges best. Dried fruits works well, too.
Step Five: Something special.20130702-162637.jpgAdd a little sometin, sometin special! I added butternut squash today, which is something I don’t have often! Try trail mix, nuts, corn chips, anything!
Step Six: Something salty.20130702-162834.jpgYou need something a little salty to balance out all of the sweetness from the fruit. Today I added goat cheese and feta cheese, which is super salty. A little bit goes a really long way!
Step Seven: Add dressing!20130702-175935.jpgI always use balsamic glaze, but I think any vinaigrette will work.
Step Eight: Relax and enjoy!20130703-062840.jpg Salads don’t have to be just lettuce, cucumbers and tomatoes, or just vegetables for that matter. Play around, get creative and make something yummy that makes eating healthy this summer fun, enjoyable, delicious & nutritious.

Happy building!20130702-180120.jpg

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2 thoughts on “Building the Best Summer Salad 101

  1. MMM I love salads with fruit, especially for summer. They have a way of cooling you off when you don’t feel like making hot meals that will make you sweat even more. My favorite is adding strawberries and blueberries 🙂

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