Mango Chile Lime Salad

fullsizeoutput_d87

I am a nomad, a wanderer, an earth child, one with mother nature.

fullsizeoutput_d6a

Perhaps a little extreme, but I do feel akin to an adult Dora the Explorer these days.

fullsizeoutput_d7b

We went to Asheville, NC this weekend and bopped around. Every single time we go to a new city, I am reminded that I am my best self when traveling for fun. Allow to overshare.

fullsizeoutput_d91

One – because I know I’m going to get some fresh selfies with my boo thing. Two – I LOVE going to places where there is 0 chance I’m going to run into any human being I have ever encountered. Can you say liberating?! Three – I get to debut new outfits to an entirely new audience. Strangers are the only people I trust. Four – I like pretending to be a local wherever I go and acting like I have a clue what I’m doing. For instance, when exiting an establishment and heading to the next, one must always be prepared to immediately turn left or right. Do not lolly gag outside of the place of business asking your travel bud where to go. FAKE IT UNTIL YOU FIND SOMETHING KEWL. Five – all the new tastes in my mouth from all of the delightful, local restaurants. If you travel and go to the Chili’s….we need to have a conversation. I just love traveling around the hunk of land we call America with my man. Even better that we get to live all over the doggone place and move every couple of years to get a feel for everything. I really am obsessed with not knowing where we’re going to be next or for how long.

fullsizeoutput_d8e

Unless they send us to the middle of nowhere Iowa or something, then I’m OUT.

 

 

Time: 45 minutes (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe mango
  • Juice of 1 orange + zest of 1/2
  • 3 tbsp. of lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp. of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. of ground ginger
  • 1 tbsp. of sweet chili paste
  • 2 tbsp. of cilantro
  • Arugula
  • 1/2 a red onion, sliced thin
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 cup of roasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup of quinoa, cooked
  • 1 avocado, sliced thin
  • S+P, to taste

How to:

  • In a food processor, combine mango + orange juice + zest + lemon juice + vinegar + ginger + chili paste + cilantro + S+P, process until smooth
  • To assemble salad, arrange arugula on a plate + top with some red onion + some cherry tomatoes + some pumpkin seeds + some quinoa + some avocado + drizzle with dressing, repeat with remaining ingredients
  • Serve chilled
  • Pick up a fork in each hand + scoop together large heap, slingshot at face as if your mouth is the bullseye

 

Salad dressing adapted from here!

Chopped Greek Salad

fullsizeoutput_a67

Apparently, I have what some like to call Rolls Royce taste on a Honda budget.

fullsizeoutput_a5a

We’re shopping for our first home.

fullsizeoutput_a5e

And we could just get a lot more house for the money if our budget was like $800,000.

fullsizeoutput_a61

Honestly, Garrett is the problem. He’s wildly against a fixer upper because he doesn’t want to spend his time making improvements. I’m really down for whatever. As long as there are at least 2.5 baths, floor to ceiling windows with lots of natural light and a giant kitchen with white marble countertops and white cabinets, I’m set. I’m simple, really. I don’t mind having to make a couple of updates to get our dream home. But I can’t even online search with Garr anymore. If we look at a house and the curtains are ugly, he’s like nope, no, can’t, exit out of this page, I’m out. He can’t look past the poor decorating choices and see the good bones of a place. We saw one and he was like ugh NO I’d have to rip off that wall paper. The audacity! He thinks we just need to buy a new build. I was like OK great, that sounds really nice, why don’t you just loosen the grip on your pocketbook, good sir.

fullsizeoutput_a6b

How easy is it to buy a house behind your husband’s back? Asking for a friend.

 

 

Time: 30 minutes (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of romaine, washed + shredded
  • 1 english cucumber, sliced thin
  • 1/2 a red onion, sliced thin
  • 1 pint of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/2 cup of kalamata olives
  • 1/4 cup of banana peppers
  • 1/4 cup of roasted red peppers
  • 1/2 cup of quinoa, uncooked
  • 1/2 cup of olive oil
  • 1/3 cup of red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. of lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. of oregano
  • 1 tsp. of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. of onion powder
  • Pinch of sugar
  • S+P, to taste

How to:

  • Cook quinoa according to package directions, set aside
  • In a bowl, whisk olive oil + red wine vinegar + lemon juice + oregano + garlic powder + onion powder + sugar + S+P, refrigerate until ready to use
  • In a big bowl combine lettuce + cucumber + onion + tomatoes + kalamata olives + peppers
  • Pour onto a big cutting board
  • Using a ulu knife, chop up the salad to your desire
  • Add back to bowl + add quinoa + mix in dressing
  • Serve chilled
  • Using a spatula, shovel salad contents into mouth until they are all gone and you have eaten your daily calories in salad

Broccoli + Grain Salad

fullsizeoutput_a12

Reason 23,085 I’m not meant to live in the south: my daggum ‘do can’t take it.

fullsizeoutput_9f7

The combination of humidity and high winds does truly unspeakable things to my hair.

fullsizeoutput_9ff

We went to Charleston for the weekend and they were having tornado-like winds the whole time. Ya girl had her hair up IN A PONYTAIL. Tragic!!!!

fullsizeoutput_a08

Apart from the hair debacle, we had a delightful time. We frolicked and explored and took in some sights and only a few folks did double takes at what the heck was atop my head (my messy bun frightens people). Charleston’s food scene is pretty dope and I ate like a right queen. Garr & I are high key obsessed with Netflix’s Chef’s Table and have been jonesing to visit one of the featured restaurants. We finally checked that off the bucket list this weekend and it was just superb. They made me a vegan entree without any hassles and it was basically just a bunch of side dishes but we all know that’s the best part of the meal anyways. G must have had a stroke or something when he placed his order because he chose snapper and he doesn’t like seafood?¿ It was swimming in a lil broth and it reminded him of a time he was camping and surviving off the land and he and his pals had the great idea to boil a fish they caught in a stew they were making and it turned gray and tasted like dirt. So, slightly different experiences.

fullsizeoutput_a0a

We ended the evening at a hot pink champagne & caviar bar & I decided then & there that I simply MUST have such a room in my next home.

 

Time: 1 hour (prep + cooking) | Serves: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup of red lentils, uncooked
  • 1/2 cup of quinoa, uncooked
  • 1/2 cup of barley, uncooked
  • 2 heads of broccoli, washed + cut into florets
  • 1/2 a red onion, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup of almonds, toasted + chopped
  • 1/4 cup of pomegranate seeds
  • 1/4 cup of apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tbsp. of sugar
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp. of olive oil
  • Juice + zest of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp. of dijon mustard
  • S+P, to taste

How to:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Add onions to a jar or bowl, top with apple cider vinegar + sugar + 1 tsp. of S + 1 cup of warm water, cover + refrigerate until you’re ready to serve
  • Cook grains according to package directions, drain + set aside
  • Arrange broccoli on a lined baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tbsp. of olive oil + some S+P
  • Roast for 25 minutes, tossing once
  • Meanwhile, combine remaining olive oil + lemon juice + zest + dijon + S+P
  • To serve, combine grains + broccoli + pickled red onions (minus their juice) + almonds + pomegranate seeds + dressing
  • Serve warm, room temp or chilled
  • Place self in a high chair + feed self with hands like lil doll baby you are