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Jane's 'Pea' licious Salad

‘Pea’licious Salad

Happy spring! I am sitting on my front porch, newly swept and ready for summer, enjoying a beautiful sunny Santa Fe morning. While I was away for three months in England, I found it difficult at times to eat healthy. Actually, almost all the time. I also became addicted to sugar again. Yes, addicted! (Do you know that the part of our brain that lights up with cocaine use is the very same part that lights up when you eat sugar? Yeah, that’s right, sugar is addictive and destructive.) I also packed on the pounds, felt lousy and even depressed. Then the health coach started putting two and two together and realized that my diet was doing me in and I better listen to what I tell people every day, “what you eat makes a difference in how you feel!” So I quit sugar, cold turkey and within three days, the brain fog lifted, the bad thoughts left and I started feeling like my old self. I also tried to find the healthiest item on the menu when eating out and to be mindful when cooking in our flat. When I returned home a few weeks later, I went back to a total nutritarian lifestyle and I’ve lost 11 pounds in two and a half weeks, and I feel great. I’m convicted now. I could not have seen more clearly the night and day difference between how I feel when on a nutritarian diet vs. a sugar laden, nutrient poor diet. (And BTW, my lady friends of a certain age, I suffered terrible hot flashes during my detour of bad eating, but when I stopped the sugar, the hot flashes went to almost nothing, and since I returned to total nutritarian, I’ve not suffered a single one. Yes, what you eat is that powerful!) Now, on to the fun!

This is a recipe I adapted from the seasonal A’peas’ment salad at Viniagrette: A Salad Bistro, here in Santa Fe. Nutrient dense and delicious!

Jane's 'Pea' licious Salad
munchy, crunchy, taste explosion

‘Pea’licious Salad

'Pea' licious Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2
 
This nutrient dense salad will fill you up and delight your tastebuds
Ingredients
  • One head Romaine lettuce, chopped
  • ½ package chopped sugar snap peas
  • ½ cup julienned radishes
  • ½ cup julienned jicama
  • 1 cup chopped red pepper
  • ¼ cup chopped mint leaves
  • black sesame seeds
  • dressing:
  • ½ cup raw pistachio nuts
  • ½ cup chopped mint leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 scallions, chopped
  • ¼ - ½ cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 Tbs. lemongrass mint white balsamic OR 2 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbs. champagne vinegar
  • 1 Tbs. nutritional yeast
  • black pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Chop all salad ingredients and toss in large salad bowl
  2. Place all dressing ingredients in blender or food processor starting with ¼ c. almond milk
  3. Add more milk to desired consistency
  4. Sprinkle salad with black sesame seeds
  5. Serves 2 for a full meal or 4-6 as side salad

 

Give this salad a try! Interested in the Nutritarian lifestyle? Read The End of Dieting: How to live for life, by Dr. Joel Fuhrman and if you need a coach to help you through the transition, check out my health coaching packages. 

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Peace and JOY!

toast-and-jam

Breakfast in Britain

Breakfast in Britain is a bit of a brain twist for Americans. They serve beans (pretty much like the pork n’ beans in a can we know from home) and mushrooms, cooked tomatoes, along with bacon, ham or sausage, or sometimes all three if you get the big breakfast, eggs of your choice and toast, brown or white.

Poached eggs on toast with a mushroom

Granted, eggs and meat are quite familiar in the USA, it’s the beans, mushrooms and tomatoes that throw us. There is also tea or coffee, of course.

Tea cup made in Worcester with Wittard’s English Rose Tea

And sometimes, even a great view!

View from County Arms, Truro, Cornwall

Since I have grown used to my green super smoothies at home, I have readjusted my breakfast thinking when I am traveling. Mushrooms are a super food, so I love that I can have them for breakfast and I quite like eggs, so I have them either poached or boiled, but occasionally fried. I was really impressed one evening at Three Tuns pub, Hay-on-Wye, Wales, when I also had a mushroom risotto with a breaded poached egg on top. Now that was delicious.

Three Tuns Pub Mixed Olive & Fennel Risotto, Creme Fraiche, Deep Fried Poached Egg, Pecorino Crackling

I have had more toast here than a year of breakfasts at home, but the jams are so delicious, it’s hard to pass up, even when making breakfast in my flat. I passed an honor jar jam sale on the street one day and paid 2 pounds, a steal compared to other jams I’ve seen, (or bought) for Ed’s Forest Fruits, which my friend Rachel tells me would be blackberries and currants.

Ed’s Forest Fruits bought at an honor jar table on street
Scrumptious Strawberry and Rose Jam from the Old Stables Tea House, Hay on Wye, Wales

Whatever it is, the fruit is big and chunky and super delicious and so I’ve had toast on more than several occasions. However, for breakfast, most days in my flat, even though there is a blender and I could make a smoothie, I have taken to having salad,

Salad for breakfast? Yes!

sweet potato and fruit.

Delicious for breakfast with a small pat of organic butter

Now that is a breakfast to write home about! Fills me up and tastes great. I am definitely adding mushrooms to the mix when I get home and I may never go back to the smoothie. What?? That’s right, as great as they are, why not have all that yumminess in it’s natural state? We will see, but for now…please pass the jam!

If you like this post, please share, and don’t forget to say what YOU are having for breakfast these days!

 

Friday-Foodie

Friday Foodie: Quinoa Salad with Apples, Walnuts and Mint

Friday Foodie Quinoa Salad with Apples, Walnuts and Mint is a great mix of crispiness  and popping flavors. The above picture shows the layers of color before tossing. I seem to have failed to take a final picture, but this gives you the essence of this light, tasty, easy to prepare salad.

Start with 1 1/2 cups quinoa, prepared according to package instructions. I made mine in the rice cooker on the white rice setting. I made it a day ahead so it would already be cooled.

I used already sliced apples and then simply chopped them up into small, bite size pieces.

The walnuts did not need further chopping.

I like this frozen roasted corn, as it is easy to throw into any dish. No need to defrost. By the time the salad is ready to be tossed, the corn will be defrosted. If frozen roasted is unavailable, either roast a cob and remove or use any frozen corn. It does not have to be roasted. Do not use canned.

This celery was in the bottom of the drawer on its last leg, but still crunchy and this salad was a good way to use it up. I cut into long strips, as above, then chop.

This kale is quite young and tender. Avoid the big heavy leaves as they will not be as tender. If that is all that is available, cut the amount to 1/4 cup instead of 1/2 and chop into small pieces.

Aren’t red peppers just beautiful! I love the color and they always seem so juicy.

This is just a few sprigs of the mint leaves I had. Sadly, kind of blurry. The mint adds the refreshing pop that makes this salad so delicious.

This salad was inspired by a salad I ate at the Flying Star a few weeks ago. I almost didn’t order it, as it sounded like such an odd combination, but it truly is delicious. I dressed the salad with pomegranate balsamic, but I have included a recipe for a pomegranate vinaigrette that could be used. I hope you will give this a try. This salad kept nicely for 4-5 days, so it is a great choice to fix ahead and have ready for a sack lunch. Quinoa provides a protein punch that satiates and keeps you feeling full. This could also be served on a bed of mixed greens. Give it a try and enjoy!

Friday Foodie: Quinoa Apple Walnut Salad with Mint
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Vegan
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
A delicious salad light and crispy salad dressed with Pomegranate Balsamic or an alternative Pomegranate Vinaigrette, recipe following.
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cups quinoa prepared following package instructions
  • ¾ cup chopped apples (use a tart apple, no need to peel)
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts
  • ½ cup roasted corn kernels (frozen is fine)
  • ½ cup chopped celery
  • ½ - 1 cup chopped baby kale leaves
  • ½ cup chopped red pepper
  • ½ cup chopped mint leaves (or less if preferred)
  • ¼ cup Pomegranate Balsamic
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients, except balsamic, in a large salad bowl.
  2. Toss until well combined.
  3. Pour balsamic across salad and toss until ingredients are moistened.
  4. May be served on a bed of lettuce greens.
  5. Alternative Pomegranate Vinaigrette
  6. I cup of POM or other 100% pomegranate juice (read the label)
  7. ½ tsp of sugar
  8. ½ tsp of salt
  9. tsps high quality balsamic
  10. tsp high quality olive oil (optional)
  11. Bring the juice to a boil.
  12. Turn down heat and reduce the liquid to about ⅓ – ½ cup.
  13. Remove from heat.
  14. Stir in remaining ingredients until sugar and salt are dissolved.
  15. Allow to cool.
  16. Dress salad with desired amount.

 

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Haricots Verts, bagged

Friday Foodie: Haricots Vert Salad with chèvre and walnuts (vegan version included)

I recently returned from France where I had lots of great food. One of my favorite salads in France is Salade au Chèvre Chaud. This is a salad with goat cheese either wrapped in phyllo and baked, breaded and baked, or toast points with goat cheese broiled. The last one I had was in a bistro on a Sunday afternoon in Paris. And it was over the top with smoked duck, lots of toasty goat cheese and a salad that included haricots verts. This is what it looked like.

Salade au Chèvre Chaud

You can just make out the haricots verts there at the bottom. If you can’t tell yet, they are a French green bean and I have always loved them, but had never had them in a salad. They were a delicious addition. After all the rich food in France and then coming home to Thanksgiving, I have been craving vegetable rich dishes so came up with my own version of a salad that incorporates Haricots Verts. I have had this numerous times this week already. I hope you enjoy as much as I do!

Haricots Verts, bagged

Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add a bag of these bad boys and 1/2 tsp of salt. Boil about four minutes or until bright green. Don’t over cook them. Remove to a ice water bath or run continuous cold water over them to cool. Then place in refrigerator until completely chilled. I did mine first thing in the morning and then left in the refrigerator till I made my salad that evening.

Mixed baby salad greens

Pile some mixed baby salad greens in a bowl.

Organic Pea Shoots

Throw on a pile of organic pea shoots. Sprouts of any kind would also work.

Haricots Verts on bed of mixed baby salad greens

Top with a large handful of Haricots Verts.

Wintered cherry tomato plant

Pick some tomatoes off your wintered cherry tomato plant and slice in half. (What? You don’t winter your tomato plants? I learned about this last year and have done it successfully two years in a row now. Just uproot your cherry tomato plant [you can do this with others if you have the room] and put the root ball in a plastic bag. Allow plant to hang down and pick as they ripen. I have had mine inside since third week in October before the first freeze and I’m still picking.)

Lemon Balsamic dressing on salad

This is what mine looked like with the tomatoes and my homemade salad dressing. If you are vegan, add some walnuts and dressing and your ready to go. If not…

Haricots Verts salad with feta and walnuts

add a little crumbled chèvre (or feta) as well. I think this would also be good with shredded carrots, which I think I will try today. Use your favorite dressing or try this one I came up with for my salad.

Enjoy!

Friday Foodie: Haricots Vert Salad with Lemon Balsamic Dressing
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Semi-French
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
 
This dressing would be delicious on any salad, but is especially good with Haricots Verts.
Ingredients
  • 1 Tbs minced shallots
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbs cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbs fresh lemon juice (juice of one lemon generally)
  • ¼ c high quality balsamic
  • ¼ c sunflower oil
  • 1½ tsp thyme leaves, chopped
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Combine first six ingredients in blender or mini food processor.
  2. With blender or processor running, add oil in a steady stream.
  3. Add thyme, salt and pepper and blend.
  4. Serve.
  5. Can be stored in jar in refrigerator for a week.
  6. Shake before using.

 

Layers of veggies

Friday Foodie: Quinoa Apple Walnut Salad with Mint

Layers of color before tossing. I seem to have failed to take a final picture, but this gives you the essence of this light, tasty, easy to prepare salad.

Layers of veggies

Start with 1 1/2 cups quinoa, prepared according to package instructions. I made mine in the rice cooker on the white rice setting. I made it a day ahead so it would already be cooled.

Sliced Apples

I used already sliced apples and then simply chopped them up into small, bite size pieces.

Walnuts

The walnuts did not need further chopping.

Frozen Corn

I like this frozen roasted corn, as it is easy to throw into any dish. No need to defrost. By the time the salad is ready to be tossed, the corn will be defrosted. If frozen roasted is unavailable, either roast a cob and remove or use any frozen corn. It does not have to be roasted. Do not use canned.

Celery

This celery was in the bottom of the drawer on its last leg, but still crunchy and this salad was a good way to use it up. I cut into long strips, as above, then chop.

Tender Young Kale

This kale is quite young and tender. Avoid the big heavy leaves as they will not be as tender. If that is all that is available, cut the amount to 1/4 cup instead of 1/2 and chop into small pieces.

Red Peppers

Aren’t red peppers just beautiful! I love the color and they always seem so juicy.

Mint

This is just a few sprigs of the mint leaves I had. Sadly, kind of blurry. The mint adds the refreshing pop that makes this salad so delicious.

This salad was inspired by a salad I ate at the Flying Star a few weeks ago. I almost didn’t order it, as it sounded like such an odd combination, but it truly is delicious. I dressed the salad with pomegranate balsamic, but I have included a recipe for a pomegranate vinaigrette that could be used. I hope you will give this a try. This salad kept nicely for 4-5 days, so it is a great choice to fix ahead and have ready for a sack lunch. Quinoa provides a protein punch that satiates and keeps you feeling full. This could also be served on a bed of mixed greens. Give it a try and enjoy!

Quinoa Apple Walnut Salad in a Pomegranate Balsamic

1 ½ cups quinoa prepared following package instructions
¾ cup chopped apples (use a tart apple, no need to peel)
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ cup roasted corn kernels (frozen is fine)
½ cup chopped celery
½ – 1 cup chopped baby kale leaves
½ cup chopped red pepper
½ cup chopped mint leaves (or less if preferred)
¼ cup Pomegranate Balsamic

Place all ingredients, except balsamic, in a large salad bowl. Toss until well combined. Pour balsamic across salad and toss until ingredients are moistened.

The mint and apples make this a refreshing salad. This salad could also be dressed with a:

Pomegranate Vinaigrette

1 cup of POM or other 100% pomegranate juice (read the label)
½  tsp of sugar
½ tsp of salt
2 tsps high quality balsamic
1 tsp high quality olive oil (optional)

Bring the juice to a boil. Turn down heat and reduce the liquid to about 1/3 – ½ cup. Remove from heat. Stir in remaining ingredients until sugar and salt are dissolved. Allow to cool. Dress salad with desired amount.

Recipe by Jane Thompson
www.janeannthompson.com