Thursday, August 19, 2010

Salad Shaker

When I worked full-time in an office, I was a faithful brown-bagger of my lunch.  Bringing lunch from home was always the healthier, tastier, more cost-effective and convenient choice, and more often than not, it was a salad.  I'd start with an empty Tupperware container and start chopping whatever looked good in the fridge, with a general formula of fun veggies + protein + greens equaling delicious lunch salads that never bored me.

Some of my favorite combos?
Mediterranean = Chickpeas, feta, chopped roasted red peppers, cukes and tomatoes
Mexican = Black beans, shredded pepper jack cheese, chopped tomatoes and peppers, leftover turkey taco meat and salsa
Classic Spinach = Chopped hard-boiled eggs, halved cherry tomatoes, and maybe a little bacon
Summer Special = Chopped grilled zuchini and squash, chopped heirloom tomatoes, grilled corn, feta

The possibilities are endless, and the key is the salad shaker that you create in your Tupperware.  You line all the heavy proteins and veggies on the bottom, cover them with your fluffy, lovely greens and bring your dressing in a little jar on the side.  At lunchtime, you drizzle the dressing over top and shake, shake, shake until the whole thing is tossed.  I love having a salad for lunch... it fills you up and energizes you for a full afternoon, and then you've eaten all your veggies and can be a little naughty at dinner if need be.  Because sometimes a gal needs a steak and a dirty martini for dinner and doesn't care to interrupt that bliss with any roughage.

Since I've started working from home, sometimes I forget to eat lunch altogether (I never thought I could be one of those people, but suddenly these days, I turn around and it is 2pm and I haven't even thought of lunch), and then when I do remember that I need an afternoon meal, the whole fridge is right there, and I'm more likely to grab a yogurt or leftovers or something utterly random (hello, lunch of toaster waffles).  I realized lately that I've been missing my killer salads.  My body misses the dose of greens, and my soul misses the civilized lunch of a grown-up.  So, I am back to my salad shakers once more!  My new routine?  I make lunch for little J, pop him in his chair and then start chopping things at the table while I keep him company as he eats.  I still make the whole thing in a Tupperware for one-dish easy clean-up, and because then I can store my masterpiece away in the fridge until I get a quiet moment to sit and enjoy it.  Yesterday's creation:
Chopped heirloom tomatoes, steamed edamame, chunks of honey soy tofu from the Whole Foods deli case, chopped avocado, and fresh spinach.  I threw this together literally in 10 minutes while singing a round of "I Love You a Bushel and a Peck" with my little fellow.  I ate it while sipping ice water and tending to a work spreadsheet after he went down for his afternoon nap.  The whole thing was divine and kicked the ass of a gulped down yogurt.  Eat your greens!  Your body will thank you.  And shake 'em up to keep it simple and saucy, the SMJ way.
What's your favorite salad combo? 

1 comment:

  1. I go with my cravings. The last one was plump and sweet dried cherries from Michigan. I threw them in every salad. Slivered almonds had their day too. Now it's oranges. Your advice, SMJ, to listen to our bodies is a wise one.