It was freaking freezing today – 46 degrees with a wind chill of 40 when I left work this afternoon. EEK! It was nice knowing you supple skin, bare toes and static-free hair. Let’s touch base in another 6 to 7 months, mmkay?
I stared out my big picture window at work all day, shuddering every time the cold wind whipped through the trees, and dreaming about the bright & sunny dinner salad I’d be making later that night. 8)
The mother of all salads, if you will – The Toppings Salad!
Now I’m not one to make a lot of salads for dinner. For one, they don’t usually keep me full for longer than a couple hours, which just fuels my evening snacking fire.
For two, I’m looking for a meal at dinnertime. Something I can really sink my teeth into. Know what I mean? (Cheeseburger Pizza, I’m looking at you…)
The salad I featured on last week’s Friday Favorites has been weighing heavily on my mind though, so I decided to pump the heck out of it by adding TONS of toppings in the form of of fresh fruit, veggies, lean protein, nuts and healthy fat to make it ultra satisfying, but give it maximum staying power too.
Lettuce is overrated – toppings are where it’s at!
In the mix:
1/2 a mango + cherry tomatoes,
1/2 an avocado + chevre (soft goat cheese – drooooool)
salted cashews + grilled chicken breast.
Drizzled with this incredible Marzetti Strawberry Chardonnay Vinaigrette, that’s sweetened with strawberry juice and a touch of kiwi juice. It’s so delish!
In addition to adding the vinaigrette to my topping-centered salad, I marinated my chicken breasts in a splash of it for a few hours before grilling. It added just the slightest tinge of sweetness that I just loved.
Not only was this dinner salad packed with good-for-me, uber-filling toppings, but each bite was a new flavor combo. I think I liked the mango/goat cheese/ chicken combo the best.
Cross your fingers, but I think this has just the right mix of healthy fats, protein, and carbs to keep me full all night long. If not, I’m still hoarding Pumpkin GingerCRACK Cookies. Whew!
In other news, it’s been decided that tonight shall be reading night at Casa de IGE! Neither Ben nor I have anything on TV that we want to watch, he just got a couple of new books at the mall this weekend, and I have agreed to put tidying up the house aside (twist my arm) to settle down with my Kindle and a Hot Apple Cider K-Cup. Now I just need to pick out a title!
Reading was practically a religion growing up. I remember being semi hated in grade school for consistently getting the most stars on the board for books read outside of class. I’d go through Babysitter’s Club, Sweet Valley High and Goosebump novels like they were going out of style.
Then high school happened and things got busy with dance, friends and eating at Friday’s. Next I went to college where there was zero time to read between school assignments and sorority shenanigans, and it’s been hard for me to settle back down into a consistent reading routine even after all these years.
I think reading is really good for the mind and soul, and every time I DO finally carve some time out to dig into a new book I ask myself why I waited so long to do it. I love, love, love getting lost in a good story, fiction or non-fiction, so I guess it’s just one of those things I have to be better at making time for.
Now, what’s everybody reading these days?
Are you a big reader? Did you used to be/have you always been?