Honey Glazed Beet, Fresh Fig, and Roasted Kale Salad

I love parties.

I love planning parties.

I love making food to eat at parties.

I love eating food other people made at parties.

I love food and parties.

I mean, who doesn’t?  Unless you’re an introvert.  But even then, you still probably like food.

So bring this to your next party.  I just did. {Happy Birthday Anouk!!}

Honey Glazed Beet, Fresh Fig, and Roasted Kale Salad

{Gluten-Free, Vegetarian}

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Prep Time: 30 – 45 minutes
Serves: 4 entree-sized salads, or 8 sides

Ingredients:

  • 8 small beets {or 4 large}
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs honey
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 bunches dinosaur kale
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2-dozen figs, quartered
  • 1 C ricotta
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 425.  Peel and cut beets into wedges.  Toss with 2 Tbs olive oil and salt to taste.  Place on a large baking sheet, and cook for 25 minutes, or until soft.
  2. Whisk together 2 Tbs honey and 2 Tbs olive oil.  Toss cooked beets in dressing.  Adding additional honey, salt, or pepper as desired.
  3. Turn oven to broil.  Remove stems of kale leaves.  In two batches, toss with 1 Tbs olive oil each, and salt and pepper.  Place one bunch in the oven for 5 minutes, or until edges become crispy and lightly charred.  Repeat with second bunch.  Chop roasted kale into bite sized pieces.
  4. Plate figs and honey glazed beets atop roasted kale.  Dollop on ricotta and serve!

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I love this salad.  It is so simple.

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The honey glaze for the beets could also be used as a salad dressing drizzle if desired.

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But I think the ingredients speak for themselves.

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A beautiful mix of color, texture, and taste.

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I was nervous to bring kale AND beets to a party, but people ate it up!  {Maybe that’s a lovely California thing, or maybe it’s the fact that we played chubby bunny and stuffed ourselves silly with sugar – veggies to counteract the marshmallow high.}

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Note:  If you are bringing this to a party, Do Not Mix.  It will turn the salad into pink mush! And you don’t want that.

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Mmmm. Doesn’t that look good?

Bon Appetite!

Kale, Quinoa, & Orange Salad

Hello there darlings.

Happy Friday!

itsfridayonlystudy2hours

Or maybe 3 or 4…

Hope your week went well!

I have a delicious recipe to share with you today.

I know. Can you believe it? It’s been way too long.
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Kale, Quinoa, & Orange Salad

Adapted from the  Edible Perspective
{vegan}
{gluten-free}

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Prep Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 6-8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Tbs Coconut oil, or olive oil
  • 1 C Uncooked quinoa
  • 2 C Water
  • 6 Tbs Olive oil
  • 4 1/2 Tbs White wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbs Fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1 Tbs Honey
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tsp Orange zest
  • 1/2 head Dinosaur kale
  • 3 Oranges
  • 1 C Chickpeas

Instructions:

  1. Place the coconut oil in pot over medium heat and add quinoa once hot.  Stir quinoa and oil for 3 – 5 minutes.
  2. Add water and bring to boil over medium-high heat.  Once boiling, stir once and cover with lid for 15 – 18 minutes until water is absorbed.  Do not stir while cooking.
  3. Remove quinoa from heat and let sit covered for 5 – 10 minutes.  Fluff with a fork, and place in the refrigerator on a large baking sheet to chill.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, orange juice,  honey, zest, and a pinch of salt.  Set aside.
  5. Remove and discard stems from kale leaves.  Slice leaves into thin ribbons, measuring out approximately 3 Cups loosely packed kale.
  6. Remove skins and section oranges into bite sized pieces.
  7. Add kale, oranges, chickpeas with half of the dressing in a large bowl.  Toss and place in refrigerator to chill for 10 minutes.
  8. Add kale, chilled quinoa, and remaining dressing together.  Mix well.
  9. Top with chopped pecans and orange zest, serve or store covered.

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Ohhh yes, yes, yes.

This is such a light and refreshing salad.  Perfect for hot summer days.

First, I want to start with the quinoa. Now, I know most of you know about quinoa – but have you ever cooked it using a little coconut oil?

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Holy smokes.

Brown up your quinoa in sweet coconut goodness before adding water. Ohhhh boy!

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Heaven! I’m in heaven.

We could stop with the recipe right here, really.

Bucket of coconut quinoa for one please!

That’s the awesome thing about cooking up a big batch of grains at the beginning of your week. You can do anything with it – eat it hot in the morning with a little milk and sugar, have a serving on the side with salmon and grilled veggies, or add beans and veg for a complete meal! So versatile.

Okay – getting side tracked here.

So while you are cooking up your quinoa, get started on making your vinaigrette. {Does anyone else have the worst time spelling ‘vinaigrette?’}

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A little of this, a little of that…

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Bada-bing, bada-boom.

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{Please note: Those past two lines should be read with a thick New Jersey // Italian accent.}

Now chop up that kale real good.

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Add in the rest of the ingredients.

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Voila!

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A delicious meal that is hardy enough to last in the fridge for the entire work week {that is, if you have the will-power to not eat it all}.

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Pretty, no?

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Pretty and delicious.

Have a Killer Weekend!

The Dessert Salad :: Spiced Cocoa-Candied Almonds with a Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette

You know I’m all about eating healthy, but sometimes girlfriend just needs to satisfy a sweet tooth.

Veggies don’t always have to be savory.  And I’m here to proclaim that good news.

I bring you The Dessert Salad.

Oh yes.

Dessert.

Salad.

Hallelujah!

The Dessert Salad

{vegetarian}
{gluten-free}

Prep time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4 salads

Ingredients:

Salad

  • 8 C mixed greens
  • 4 large roasted beets, sliced
  • grilled asparagus
  • 4 oz goat cheese {or feta, or blue cheese… really any cheese you like}
  • any other veggies {mushrooms, artichokes, beans}

Spiced Cocoa Candied Almonds

  • 1/4 C sliced almonds
  • 1 Tbs butter
  • 1/2 Tbs brown sugar
  • 1/2 Tbs cocoa powder
  • 1/8 tsp chili powder
  • 1/8 tsp cinnamon

Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette

  • 1 Tbs finely chopped/smashed blueberries
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbs honey

Instructions:

  1. In a large pan, melt butter and brown sugar over medium heat.  Mix in cocoa, chili powder, and cinnamon.  Add sliced almonds and toss well to coat for about 5 minutes.
  2. Remove almonds from heat, spread out and let cool on a piece of tin foil.
  3. In a small bowl, or salad dressing shaker, add all ingredients for Blueberry Balsamic Vinaigrette.  Shake well.
  4. Combine salad ingredients, sprinkle with candied almonds, cheese, and drizzle vinaigrette on top.  Enjoy!

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I love the spicy kick to the almonds.  If you are more daring, add a little extra chili powder.

Try not to eat them all before they get on your salad…

Sweet, but not too sweet.

Just right for those afternoons when you need a little treat!

{Poet status.}

Have a great Thursday!

Peace Out!

Garden Tomato Cucumber Mint Salad

What do you do when a lovely neighbor comes to your door with a beautiful bowl of tomatoes and cucumbers, freshly-picked-from-the-garden?

You make a salad, of course!

Garden Tomato Cucumber Mint Salad

{vegan}
{gluten-free}

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 5 medium-sized tomatoes
  • 2 small cucumbers
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh mint
  • juice from 1/4 of a lemon
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

Instructions:

  1. Chop tomatoes and cucumbers in to bite-sized pieces and place in a large bowl.
  2. Add mint, lemon juice, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar and toss.
  3. Chill for at least half hour before serving and enjoy!

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Such a refreshing addition to your summer dinner plate.

And so easy to make, which I of course love.

Enjoy with a little moozarell on the side.

Go ahead, you know you wanna talk in an Italian accent when you eat this.

Muah! Perfetto!

Fresh Moz & Basil Pizza Muffins

Heyo!

Comin’ ‘atcha bright and early, so I can squeeze in a run and lift before my Nutrition Care Process Webinar.  Oh yeah, I’m stoked to get down with nutrition diagnostic language and charting.  I know there are some other future RDs out there that like to write a mean PES statement.  It’s okay, don’t be shy.

Yeah! And proud of it, baby!

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On to the topic of today’s post :: PIZZA!

Not too long ago, C-dizzle sent me a picture he found on the internets of pizza in muffin form.

{Uh, genius. Can you say perfect portion control?}

And then that same day I received my Foodie Pen Pal Box from Meagan that contained a box of gluten-free pizza mix!

It was fate!

So I bring you…
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Fresh Moz & Basil Pizza Muffins

{vegetarian}
{gluten-free}

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 16 minutes

Yield: 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1 box pizza crust mix (I used Chebe which had a really good taste!)*
  • 6 oz fresh mozzarella
  • pizza sauce
  • handful of large olives, chopped
  • fresh basil

*You can make this with conventional pizza dough too!

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. Prepare muffin tin with non-stick spray.
  3. Prepare pizza dough according to package instructions.
  4. Divide dough in half, saving half for the top of the muffins.
  5. Take one half of the dough, and create 12 even balls.  Roll out into a disc like shape and press into the bottom of the muffin tins.
  6. Spoon a teaspoon of pizza sauce onto the crust.
  7. Add desired toppings, such as a quarter of an ounce of mozzarella, and a slice of olive.
  8. Repeat step 5 with the remaining dough.  Pinch the ends of the top and bottom crust together.
  9. Top pizza muffins with more sauce, cheese, olives, and basil, as desired.
  10. Place muffin tin in the oven for 16 minutes, or until cheese turns a golden brown.
  11. Remove from oven and let set 5 minutes before removing pizza muffins.
  12. Enjoy piping hot!

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And now for the instructions via pictures…

Gather up your ingredients, and prepare your pizza crust.

Roll out the crust into discs and place in muffin tin bottom.

Add {inside} toppings.

As you can see I used pre-sliced fresh mozzarella, which I then quartered for my miniature pizza muffins.

Add the top crust and pinch together.

And more toppings!

Pop in the oven and enjoy!

As you can see, my toppings slid a bit to the side during baking. Smaller chopped olives and basil would be my recommendation. But don’t worry, it still tasted awesome!

Pizaaaaa!

Cowabunga Pizza Dudes!