Sometimes the best meals come to me when I desperately need groceries. I’m not really sure why…perhaps because it forces me to get creative and try new things. Prior to my most recent grocery store trip, I managed to put together an amazing salad, so I thought I would share the process with you.
Here’s what happens:
Step 1: Pull out almost everything left in the fridge, which is usually not a lot because I wait until pretty much EVERYTHING is gone before I go to the store.
Step 2: Raid the freezer and pantry, which I do a good job of keeping well stocked, for both a protein source and a grain.
Step 3: Pile everything on the counter, stand there and stare at it for several minutes.
I needed to use up that spinach so I decided that the base of our dinner would be a salad.
In that pink container is one leftover roasted beet. I decided it would be good to add some roasted veggies to the salad, but I also wanted there to be some crunchy veggies. So, cut up that sweet potato and a couple of carrots and threw them in the oven to roast with a little EVOO and some paprika.
While they were roasted, I cooked some farro and added it to a big bowl with the raw veggies- diced yellow pepper, lots of sliced green onions- and the roasted beet.
Next, I settled on the protein. I had some salmon in the freezer so I pulled that out and pan-seared it with a little black pepper and cayenne pepper. When the veggies were done roasting, I added them to the bowl, along with the salmon (flaked into bite sized chunks).
Finally, I tackled the dressing. For some reason, I really wanted cranberries. I always have a stock of fresh cranberries in the freezer because I stock up when they go on sale. I didn’t want to make a cranberry sauce with a lot of sugar, but I did want to sweeten them up…so I put some cranberries in a small saucepan with some orange juice and just a little agave nectar and let them boil away until the cranberries popped open and the mixture thickened.
Then I decided to go a little crazy and I threw in a little bbq sauce and some mustard and called it a dressing.
Here’s the final product:
Here’s the recipe for ya!
- 1½ c farro, cooked
- 1 yellow pepper, diced
- 1 beet, roasted and diced
- 1 sweet potato, roasted and diced
- 1 large carrot, roasted and diced
- ¼ c green onions, thinly sliced
- ¼ c pecans, chopped
- 1½ pounds salmon, cooked and flaked
- goat cheese, optional
- 3-4 c spinach
- 1 c fresh or frozen cranberries
- ½ c orange juice
- 1-2 Tbsp agave nectar
- 1 Tbsp dijon mustard
- 1 Tbsp bbq sauce
- Combine all ingredients and stir to combine.
- Spoon over spinach.
- Combine cranberries, oj and agave in a small saucepan.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until cranberries burst and mixture thickens.
- Stir in mustard and bbq sauce and spoon over salad.
I forgot to add the goat cheese to our salads for dinner- GASP! But you better believe I remembered when I packed the leftovers for lunch the next day!
I ate this salad warm for dinner and cold for lunch. It was great both ways!