Saturday, May 26, 2012

Mom's spinach/strawberry salad

Craving: Mom's spinach salad, of course

My mom is such a creative cook. In Israel you have very creative ideas for vegetable dishes and salads, and salad is basically served with EVERY meal. We would always have about 4 creative veggie dishes at a table. I get so upset with pot lucks that are all pasta based. Let's get creative people! It's not too difficult to make a side dish that is nutritious, creative, and delicious.

 A typical dinner at my house growing up was a fish or chicken, a whole grain, and let's say, 3 veggie side dishes. 

These are examples of dishes we had every night for dinner:
-sauteed green beans with spicy sauce
-broiled broccoli with soy sauce
-apple cider cabbage slaw with toasted pine nuts
-watermelon, feta, and mint salad with raspberry vinaigrette
-red cabbage slaw with pineapple
-steamed sweet carrots with sesame seeds
-"waldorf" salad - aka apple, celery, walnuts, pineapple
-roasted beets with balsamic vinegar
-eggplant with tahini sauce
-sweet potatoes stuffed with roasted grapes and goat cheese, topped with honey

and many more! Please be creative with your veggies, it's not that difficult.

This weekend Charlie has some of his best friends in town visiting for a bachelor party weekend. One of his best friends, Anthony, is having a baby in August, so he wanted to do the weekend before then. I cooked up a bunch of food for them and decided to make some healthy stuff as well (and then I ate a burger myself!).

I made two salads, both of which were delicious. When you have 4 big guys and you have one burger left but you finish a salad, you know it's just that good!

I forgot to snap a picture until we had already devoured some of it, but it still looks okay:

Here is her recipe for strawberry spinach salad:

-1/2 lb spinach leaves
-1/2 pint of strawberries, sliced
-1/2 cup (i just eyeballed this and used handfsuls) of candied pecans
-2 tbs sugar (you can use splenda)
-2 tbs white vinegar
-1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
-2 tsp sesame seeds
-1 tsp poppy seeds
-1/4 medium onion, grated (you can chop it finely)
-1/4 tsp paprika (optional)

1. wash the spinach and mix with the strawberries.
2. In a separate bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients except the oil. Slowly whisk the oil in so it emulsifies.
3. Mix the dressing into the spinach/strawberry mix, and toss with the pecans.


Sidenote: do you have an ingredient that you always seem to buy, and then one day you find you have 4 open versions of it? One day my mom and I found like 4 bottles of white vinegar in her house!

Well, yesterday my mom went to fresh and easy and asked if I needed anything and I told her hamburger meat (for the guys...and me), and candied walnuts. Well after I made the salad, I went to put the walnuts in the pantry and found three packets! Woops. Katy is over and I just had her take a picture, in front of my finished wreaths!


1. What creative foods will you challenge yourself to make this week?
2. Is there a food you always tend to overbuy?

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