Sunday, June 3, 2012

June Salad Challenge

One of my favorite food blogs, Oh She Glows, is doing a June salad-a-day challenge. The crazy sickness that's been going on around here (you know, when all four of us and all of the grandparents got the stomach virus from HELL and then Linus got another stomach virus not even two weeks later) and the hospital stay/cafeteria offerings got me a little off-track in my healthy eating habits, so it sounds like the perfect thing to get me back to where I need to be with my diet. (Though I hate to say diet, because I'm not "dieting" in the contemporary sense of the word.)

The idea is to eat a salad every day for the month of June. What better way to fit in lots of vegetables on a daily basis? In the link to Oh She Glows that I posted above, there are some links to some yummy-looking salad recipes, but at least for this first week I'm planning to eat a "Big Salad" for lunch every day. (Remember Elaine ordering the "Big Salad" at the little diner they hung out at on Seinfeld?) Peas and Thank You, another food blog I enjoy, refers to it as a "Hugh Jass" salad, which cracks me up.

Here's my Big Salad formula:

Base of greens + lots of vegetables + chickpeas or black beans + Nuts (usually slivered almonds) + a good store-bought dressing

Following that formula, I always finish the salad feeling comfortably full.

Every couple of weeks or so we do a Big Salad night for dinner, and I like setting it up as a bar for a little added fun. And since efficiency and practicality are of the utmost importance for moms, I'll mention that it's handy to do Big Salad night early in the week so that vegetables, greens, and other toppings are already prepared for lunches for the rest of the week.

Here's what Big Salad night looks like at our house:

One other thing I love about Big Salad night is that it's a good opportunity to keep presenting the kids with vegetables they don't like... yet. You've probably heard that little ones sometimes need to be offered a food multiple, multiple times before they accept it. When I'm offering a little bit of a lot of stuff, it doesn't feel like such a big deal if they reject some of it, as opposed to another night when I might have made only two vegetables and worry about them getting enough to eat if they don't like one of them.

Since I have kids who are underweight according to their growth charts (which I think is baloney), I make sure to add a side of buttery garlic toast and give desert afterwards. Those poor, poor kids.

So.... anybody else up for the salad-a-day challenge? And what's your favorite salad topping?

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  1. What a great idea! I so need to do this but June is a little crazy so maybe I'll do it in July =) This is a salad I love and we add other stuff to it all the time, The dressing is to die for...and I make it with 1/2 the sugar of the recipe and it still rocks.

    1. That does sound good. And since I mentioned Seinfeld in this post, I'll tell you that every time I see poppy seeds in a recipe I think of the time Elaine failed her drug test from eating the poppyseed bagels, lol.


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