Summer Blueberry Kale Salad

Blueberry Kale Salad

Summer Blueberry Kale Salad has so much good-for-you stuff going on.  We’ve got the kale, obviously; blueberries, which we know are packed with antioxidants; plus some healthy nuts and seeds, shredded carrots, and for sweetness a few dried cranberries.  Everything is tossed together with an easy peasy honey balsamic vinaigrette.  

Some people fear raw kale because on the stalk, it’s tough and you may not know what to do with it.  But really, making a raw kale salad is no more difficult than any other kind of green salad, except for this one thing:  add the dressing to the greens alone first and mix it well.  When I say “mix well” I mean it, no gentle tossing.   This isn’t baby spinach or field greens.   Your hands are your best utensils so wash up and use them to “massage” the dressing into the greens.  The idea here is that by “massaging” the kale with the dressing, the you are breaking down the kale just enough that it becomes tender and delicious.  You know you’re doing the right thing when you see the kale turn from a dull, dark green to a bright, shiny green.  

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Cranberry-Raspberry Chia Yogurt

Cranberry Raspberry Chia Yogurt

Can we just take a step back from the flavored yogurt craziness that has completely taken over the dairy aisle?  It has gotten a tad out of hand.  This week I found several varieties that had over 25 grams of sugar per serving, which for comparison purposes, is about the equivalent of a package of Tastykake Butterscotch Krimpets.  I’m convinced that the yogurt aisle is part of a conspiracy by the grocery industry to make people eat dessert that is packaged to look like health food.   

Cranberry Raspberry Chia YogurtI have started bypassing all of the premixed flavors, no matter how tasty and healthy they sound, and stick with the big tubs of plain yogurt so I can flavor it myself.  Right now, I’m loving this cranberry raspberry puree.  I make it in big batches (shocker) and freeze it in smaller one cup containers (of course).  It’s a solid plan because you’re getting all of the benefits of the fruit you choose, but none of the extra stuff you don’t need.  I make it a bit on the less sweet side, because then we can control how sweet we’re going to make it, usually by drizzling a bit of extra honey on top, if at all.  

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Ginger Pear Breakfast Bake

Ginger Pear Breakfast Bake

Whole grain breakfast bake with ginger and pears that you prep the night before.  It sounds like a win to me!  I originally made something like this with apples and cinnamon and I decided that the same concept would work just as well with pears and ginger.  It turns out I may actually like this variation even better.

Ginger Pear Breakfast Bake

Baked oatmeal is a great breakfast when you have guests around the holidays (or any time for that matter!) because you can get it ready the night before and pop it in the oven the next morning.   That way you don’t have to get your butt out of bed super early to cook them breakfast, and they don’t come into the kitchen in search of coffee only to find you slaving over the stove, which in turn makes them feel obligated to help.  Let’s be honest, they don’t want to help.  Chances are they didn’t sleep well because they aren’t in their own bed, or not in a bed at all, and all they want is some caffeine in an extra large mug to help get them motivated to face whatever their day will bring.  You know what I’m talking about.  We’ve all been there.  

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