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Salads

Food, Salads, Vegan, Vegetarian

Bright Beet Salad With Quinoa + Toasted Pepitas

Hello; I am in love. I’d normally drop a joke about this tasty salad demystifying the belief that you “can’t make friends with salad”, but that joke has run its course — especially on this blog. I’m pretty sure I’ve used it in several salad posts, actually. I need a new line; I am just too predictable.

This salad, however, is anything but predictable.

This bowl of goodness is a dream for anyone that harbors a strong love and appreciation for earthy beets. These ruby gems are shredded, then tossed in a citrusy vinaigrette along with creamy chunks of avocado, carrots, edamame, hearty quinoa, and toasty pepitas.

Over the weekend, we hosted dinner for our recently engaged friends. Since I take great joy in hosting and feeding the ones I love, I always want something to be a colorful show-stopper. It’s similar to how Michael Scott from The Office treats the annual ‘Secret Santa’ — “I love you this many dollars worth”; only for me, it’s more along the lines of “I love you this much efforts worth”.

It’s not that this salad is a hassle per se, but between preparing hors d’oeuvres, a veg side and parchment fish packets, grating beets was the last thing I wanted to do. But it was oh-so-worth it. It’s also definitely worth mentioning that the leftovers are fantabulous.

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Food, Salads, Vegetarian

Roasted Romanesco Salad With Molasses Vinaigrette

Romanesco is a peculiar yet glorious thing. If you’ve never seen it before, you’re probably thinking this is some sort of sci-fi shit. You might even be expecting me to claim that I hail from one of those seven planets that were recently discovered, and that this is the broccoli of my people — but no. I’m not that interesting. The good news is that these edible fractals are from planet earth.

Roasted Romanesco Salad With Molasses Vinaigrette | Killing Thyme

It’s a shame I had to destroy it.

With a ravishing veg like this, you want to be able to put it to good use and make somewhat of a statement with it; you want a recipe to revolve around it. Sadly, there’s nothing too fancy about it when it comes to cooking. Much like broccoli and cauliflower, you can eat it raw, steam it, fry it or roast it.

So I made a super lush and springy salad out of it.

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Food, Salads, Vegetarian

Warm Roasted Squash Salad With Red Currants + Maple Tahini Dressing

Hi! Wow. It’s been a while, and there are no words that can express how good it feels to be back into the swing of things. If there’s anything I’ve learned about myself in my adult life it’s this: I’m a routine gal, and I don’t like to be out of my element for longer than a week — even if for vacation. In fact, I’d been dreaming about and planning for this recipe since before even coming home. I missed this space.

Though things didn’t go exactly as intended, and much like those little ruby currants pictured above, I’m a bit sour.

I had big plans for this salad, which was supposed to be a winter salad because cooking seasonally is my jam. Sadly, all three markets I hit earlier this week were out of pomegranates. I know that pomegranate seeds trend in the food world this time of year, but I didn’t realize everyone was paying attention. I suppose that’s a good sign, but it didn’t work in my favor.

Crappy luck, I shake my fist at you.

On the plus side, I did happen to stumble upon some stunning red currants from Chili, and they offered up the same pop of color and burst of tartness that pomegranate seeds would have brought to the bowl. When life hands you red currants…

¯_(ツ)_/¯

Like everyone else who overate and tossed back a cocktail too many this holiday season, I’m in total eat healthy mode. Further to that, like anyone else who overthought and tossed away a healthy work/life balance this year, I’m in total live healthy mode as well.

Some folks seem to think that hitting the reset button at the beginning of a new year is cliché. In such instances, I like to recite one of my favorite Amy Poehler-isms to myself: good for you, not for me.

For me, the end of any time frame is a good time to look back and reflect on how I can do better moving forward. Everyone likes to joke about how craptastic 2016 was since the universe basically collapsed after David Bowie peaced out. On a personal level, I think I could have done better — but as far as life + work experience goes, I wouldn’t trade my 2016 for anything; our successes come from our failures. I know it’s still early — like, we’re only five days in early — but 2017 has already proven that I’ve learned from last year, and that a healthy work/life balance is attainable. Yesterday, on top of finalizing some freelance work, I developed a new recipe, photographed it, went for a run, took a hot shower, painted my toe nails (what!), made my husband his favorite dish AND put a dent in the book I’m currently reading. Most of that probably sounds irrelevant and trivial, but it’s not. Self-care and “me time” is important — especially when you’re self-employed, don’t have set hours and are kind of a jerk boss to yourself. I didn’t give myself enough of a break last year and, as a result, I drained myself; I extinguished my own flame. Time management+ that hard-to-obtain work/life balance thing is everything.

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Food, Pescetarian, Salads, Sides, tapa-tizers + snacks

Harissa-Spiced Salmon Salad With Sweet Curry Vinaigrette

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PLEASE REFER TO FISHWATCH FOR RELIABLE INFORMATION AND UPDATES ON SALMON + SUSTAINABILITY.


Okay, so. I’m kind of in love with this salad.

Picture this: a perfectly cooked harissa-spiced salmon atop a lush bed of nourishing greens adorned with juicy grape tomatoes, shredded carrots and crunchy walnuts — all tossed with a light and sweet curry vinaigrette.

Yeah, that’s what I’m talkin’ about. I don’t mess around when it comes to salad. My summer go-to is my Crunchy Cucumber and Tomato Salad, but this bad boy is my new fall go-to.

This bountiful bowl will fill you up, keep your belly satisfied and give you a mega surge of energy. It’s exactly what I needed for lunch on Wednesday as I balanced writing assignments, recipe testing and blogstuffs. Somehow after eating this, I found the energy to wipe down the kitchen walls…

I’m excited to share this recipe because it’s bomb, but I’m *especially* excited to share it for my pescetarian pals. Some of them have only recently transitioned and, despite the fact that this lifestyle offers a plethora of tasty options, one might feel a little lost in the beginning.

Salmon is one of my favorite fish to work with. When cooked properly, it’s absolutely amazing.

It’s flaky, moist and incredibly versatile.

The salad itself includes a mix of baby spinach and arugula, grape tomatoes, shredded carrots, walnuts, red onion and kale microgreens. It’s pretty simple, but the flavors are hella good.

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The sweet curry vinaigrette is really subtle and light, so if you’re trying to cut back on dressing like I am (I’ve honestly spent most of my life defeating the purpose of eating salads by drowning them in goop), then this salad is perfect. You get all the flavor with very little calories.

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Harissa-Spiced Salmon Salad With Sweet Curry Vinaigrette

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Author Killing Thyme

Ingredients

  • Salmon:
  • 5-6 oz salmon fillet
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon Harissa spice
  • Kosher salt and cracked black Pepper
  • Salad:
  • 1 cup heaping of baby spinach
  • 1 cup heaping of arugula
  • 1/4 cup shredded carrots
  • 1.5 oz grape tomatoes sliced
  • 0.5 oz walnuts chopped
  • 1 tablespoon red onion diced
  • 1/2 cup kale microgreens optional
  • Dressing:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • Kosher salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Salmon:
  2. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees C.
  3. Drizzle olive oil on salmon and sprinkle on the salt and pepper.
  4. Evenly sprinkle the Harissa spice over the salmon fillet.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes or until salmon is flakey.
  6. Salad:
  7. Toss all of the salad ingredients into a large bowl. Drizzle the dressing on top and toss to evenly coat.
  8. Dressing:
  9. Mix all of the dressing ingredients together until combined.
  10. Assembly:
  11. Place the tossed salad into a serving bowl and top with salmon fillet.
Food, Salads, Sides, tapa-tizers + snacks, Vegetarian

Crunchy Cool Peanut Soba Noodle Salad

Soba Noodle Salad

I hope everyone had an awesome long weekend.

We had the minor threat of hurricane bits here in North Carolina, but we lucked out. Instead, we were treated to ONE rainy day that cooled temps down to the early 70s which was all kinds of awesome, because honestly, I’d forgotten what a breeze felt like. My Canadian blood + these North Carolina summers? Harsh.

But I’ll take a scorching summer over a blistering winter any day.

My long weekend was filled with some much-needed chill time after what was a hectic week. Between freelance work, prep for product reviews (I’ve got some swoon-worthy posts coming, yo!), recipe planning for this blog, housework + what felt like a jillion other things… I was done. DONE.

Now we’re into a new week and I’m feeling pretty good about it because, most importantly, I’m writing this post.

It feels like it’s been forever.

I’ve got a whole slew of fall recipes that I can’t wait to get into, but before I get into that stuff, I’ve got one more summer goodie for you.

Because let’s face it — it’s still going to be sweaty for a while. Especially in NC.

Soba Noodle Salad 3

I already have a cold soba noodle salad on the blog that I’d made a while back, but this one’s different; this one brings peanut butter to the game in a big and bad ass way. Both version of the salad are fantastic, but this one has a creaminess to it that’ll make your toes curl with pleasure. The other has more of a sesame-ginger punch to it… that will also make your toes curl with pleasure.

Hey — I am here for your pleasure.

This salad keeps in the fridge for days, but it won’t last that long. It makes for a perfect lunch, afternoon snack and dinner side, and you won’t be able to stop yourself from making pointless trips to the fridge just to indulge in a few forkfuls.

It’s best to use soba noodles, but if you can’t find any, you can use whole wheat or buckwheat angel hair pasta instead. Soba noodles are buckwheat noodles after all, so keep that in mind when searching for replacements; you want that earthy and wholesome flavor.

Soba Noodle Salad 2

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Crunchy Cool Peanut Soba Noodle Salad

Ingredients

SALAD16 oz cooked soba noodles*

  • 1 sweet bell pepper julienned
  • 1/2 cup matchstick radishes
  • 1/2 cup matchstick carrots shredded carrots are also nice!
  • 1/2 cup julienned cucumber
  • 3-4 scallions sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
  • 1/2 cup roasted unsalted peanuts coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds

DRESSING2 tablespoons sesame oil

  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons minced ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 3 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sambal oelek
  • 1/4 cup water
  • GARNISHES: Extra scallions coarsely chopped peanuts, chopped fresh parsley and sesame seeds look great as a garnish.

Instructions

DRESSINGHeat sesame oil in a skillet on medium-low heat. Care not to burn the oil.

  1. Add the garlic and ginger, and sauté for approx. 2 minutes or until fragrant.
  2. In a blender, combine the cooked garlic and ginger oil mixture with all of the other dressing ingredients.
  3. Blend until smooth and set aside.

Recipe Notes

*This recipe serves 8-10 people as a side dish. Soba noodles: When your soba noodles are cooked, rinse them under cool running water and toss them around to cool them off. Once cooled, add approx. 1 tablespoon of sesame oil to the noodles and toss to prevent them from sticking together.