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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Friday July 13th

Summer Salad with Dinner!

Daily Tidbit:  How to Make an Awesome Salad Every Time!

I used to hate salads until I realized there was a simple way to make one that was super yummy & filling: put ingredients in them that you love and always be sure to include some protein and good fats, to accompany the fiber of all those veggies!  In a couple easy steps, you will always have an Awesome Salad:

1.  Start with a Leafy Green or mixture of various Greens that you like

2.  Add a Fruit - fresh is typically best, but dried, or even canned (think mandarin oranges) can do the job

3. Add a Nut or Seed – this will provide Protein and some nice crunch!

4: Add a Cheese – there are so many different kinds!  Some add a wonderfully distinct flavor, others just lend a nice creaminess to balance out the ‘roughage’ aspect of a salad (If you’d like to add creaminess, but not Cheese, good substitutes are Beans or Avocado!)
Step 5: Add some Veggies!  Since you already have the “yumminess factor” covered with the fruit, cheese & nuts, it’s time to add the low calorie and nutrient dense powerhouse of fresh vegetables to the bowl.  Now is a good time to look at your salad and think of what colors would complement what you already have going – Carrots, Red Peppers, Artichoke Hearts, Mushrooms, Cucumbers….the list here is endless.  Add as many and as much as you’d like!  And don’t forget the jarred options like Capers and Olives and Sun Dried Tomatoes or marinated Veggies (while keeping an eye on sodium of course) for all sorts of variations.

Step 6:  Add something from the onion family:  Sweet Onions, Garlic, Red Onions, Scallions, Shallots etc.  Just 1 will do it; a little goes a long way and makes all the difference in the flavor of the salad.

Final Step: Dressing:

Pick an Acid:  Fresh Lemon or Lime juice, or any type of Vinegar you like (Balsamic, Rice, Wine, Cider etc)

Pick an Oil:  Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Canola, Peanut, Sesame, Sunflower, Avocado, Walnut etc.

Optional: Consider adding an additional ingredient to the dressing for a little Zip:  Mustard, Honey, Pesto, Salsas (fresh or even jarred), fresh Herbs, spice blends/ salt etc.

And for days when you don’t have time or ingredients to make a homemade dressing, have a healthy go-to bottled option at hand.  Don’t be afraid to add some fresh Lime or Lemon juice to a store bought dressing, it adds a nice freshness, flavor and zing!

Optional:  If you want to add more protein or heft to a salad consider all the types of Beans that exist, as well as Lentils, Quinoa, Tofu, in addition to the standards of Bacon, Chicken, Grilled Steaks, Shrimp, Salmon, White Fish, Tuna and Hard boiled eggs etc.

Toss and serve this Awesome Salad; I dare you to not enjoy it!

Cheerios with Walnuts & Blueberries for Breakfast!

Breakfast:  Cheerios with Walnuts & Blueberries
1 cup Cheerios
1 cup Fat Free Milk
1/2 cup fresh Blueberries
2 tbsp Walnuts
5 oz. OJ
Regular Coffee, black


Spinach Cheese Crepe with Avocado for Lunch!

Lunch: Spinach Cheese Crepe
Spinach Cheese Crepe (as pictured)
1/2 Avocado

We were out for lunch and the picture of this looked good and I got sucked in!  It turned out to be more like a pancake than a crepe unfortunately.  Luckily I had brought an Avocado with me; I often do this when I know we will be out for lunch so that I have something healthy to supplement my kids meal and/ or mine.  It is easy to transport and easy to add to any meal, all you need is a fork or spoon!


Watermelon Snack!

Snack:  1 cup of Watermelon


Dinner:  Friends over for Pizza Night!

Lemon Cilantro Hummus with Baby Carrots, Cucumber Slices
White Wine

Arugula & Spinach Summer Salad

Salad:  Arugula & Baby Spinach Summer Salad
Made by tossing together: sliced Peaches, Red Onion, Cilantro, Corn, Pecans, Radishes, Cherry Tomatoes and a dressing made from EVOO & Red Wine Vinegar & Balsamic Vinegar and some 21 Seasoning Salute (a salt free spice blend from Trader Joe's) and some salt. 
White Wine

Slice of Margherita Pizza & Slice of Summer Pizza

1 Slice of Whole Wheat Margherita Pizza (info below)
1 Slice of Whole Wheat Summer Pizza (recipe below)
White Wine

Whole Wheat Margherita Pizza
Whole Wheat Dough (from Refrigerator section of Trader Joe's)
Tyler Florence Margherita Recipe:

Whole Wheat Summer Pizza Recipe
Whole Wheat Dough (from Refrigerator section of Trader Joe's)
Broiled fresh cut Corn, Red Onions & Zucchini
No-Salt Added Jarred Tomato Sauce
Shredded Mozzarella

I simply cut the fresh corn off the cob and tossed in a bowl with cut Red Onions & Zucchini with oil and broiled in my oven for 10 or so minutes, until it was slightly browned.  Then I put the tomato sauce on the dough, added the Veggies and topped it with the Cheese!


Pistachio Gelato & Strawberries

Dessert: Pistachios Gelato & Strawberries  

Our friends spoiled us by bringing this yummy treat over - it was super super creamy and delicious!  And I got the inside scoop - it was Archer Farms brand from Target!

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