All day yesterday I was looking forward to dinner. It was one of those days where I had decided what I was going to make for dinner, before I had even thought about what to have for breakfast. This obviously lead to high expectations when dinner actually came, but because this recipe was adapted from a recipe on my all-time favourite recipe blog, ohsheglows.com, I knew it would exceed these expectations! I’ve been following Angela’s blog for over a year now, and I have fallen in love with every single one of her recipes that I have tried–and there are still many more I hope to try! This salad recipe is adapted (only slightly) from her Warm Spring Salad. Even though it’s not spring, I came across this recipe and just knew I had to make it for dinner. Maybe eventually I’ll get the hang of cooking in-season…
I changed the dressing to a raspberry-lemon balsamic vinaigrette because I had just bought some fresh raspberries from the farm (yum!), and the dressing turned out super spectacular! I was really impressed at how easy and simple, yet so flavourful it was. I thought the raspberries complemented the strawberries nicely in the salad, and the lemon added a subtle tartness, which was also quite nice. I also used edamame beans instead of peas, red onion instead of leek, and served the entire salad mixture cold over a large bed of spinach, instead of hot out of the pan. This salad easily wins the salad of the week award!
Warm Spring Salad Served Cold
Makes Two Large Servings- With Leftover Dressing
For the Dressing
1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
1/8 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/8 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup fresh raspberries
2 tsp agave nectar, or liquid sweetener of choice
For the Salad
1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
15 asparagus spears, lightly steamed and chopped into 2 inch pieces
10 fresh strawberries, sliced
1/4 medium-sized red onion, sliced
1/2 edamame beans
4 cups baby spinach
1. Combine dressing ingredients in a blender and blend until combined. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine cooked quinoa, asparagus spears, strawberries, red onion, and edamame beans until well mixed.
3. Split quinoa mixture over 2 plates, each with 2 cups of baby spinach.
4. Drizzle with 2-3 tablespoons of dressing and enjoy!
After coming home from the gym this morning, I had a huge craving for a big, thick, fruity, summery smoothie to enjoy on my patio since it’s just so beautiful out today. While I was gathering the ingredients on my counter, I had a laugh because it almost looked as if I were about to prepare a salad because of the amount of spinach I try to jam into my magic bullet when making smoothies. So I decided to take this strange salad “before shot” before I blended it all up because I thought it was quite funny. :)
Now because I jam all that spinach in, and combine ingredients like cranberries, strawberries, and protein powder with it, my smoothies sometimes turn into an unappealing brownish sort of colour. That’s not a problem for me, as I just grab a spoon and enjoy it for the flavour and ignore the colour, but I realized when I was setting up to take pictures of it that it might be a problem when trying to sell others on trying a recipe… So after having another good laugh, I decided to prepare the second smoothie in layers, which certainly looks a lot more appealing in my opinion. ;-)
This recipe is a perfect post-workout smoothie because it’s loaded with protein, fibre, fruits, and veggies (I promise, you won’t even taste the spinach!), but could easily be enjoyed at anytime for breakfast, a snack, or even dessert. Frozen cranberries are my new obsession in smoothies because they are extremely good for you, and they help thicken the smoothie while adding a little tartness.
Post Workout Salad Smoothie with Cranberries, Spinach, and Mango
Makes 2 large servings
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I used VegaOne)
2 tbsp flaxseeds
1 cup frozen cranberries
1 cup frozen mango
4 cups spinach or field greens
1 celery stalk
Blueberries (for garnish)
3 cups water
1 tbsp coconut sugar
1. In a large blender, blend together banana, 2 cups of water, spinach, celery, and mango.
2. Pour mixture into two glasses.
3. Rinse blender, and then blend together protein powder, flaxseeds, coconut sugar, strawberries, cranberries, and 1 cup of water.
4. Pour half of the new mixture to fill both glasses.