Good morning babes! <3
Rise & shine and HAPPY SATURYAY!!!! OR should I say, HAPPY WEEKEND!!
I’m back again, with YESTERDAY’S SALAD GOALS, a.k.a. my PERFECTLY-PERFECT LUNCH, which also just so happens to be MY ULTIMATE TAKE ON EAT YO GREENS.
Babies, it DOES NOT get greener than this. Seriously. I’m talkin’ SPINACH, BROILED ASPARAGUS, ENDIVES, AVOCADOS, FRESH DILL, BASIL & CILANTRO. Oh… & CHICK PEAS (FINE, they’re NOT GREEN, but whatever!!!!!! I NEEDED TO ADD THEM, I HAD TO. Plus, I had leftovers in my fridge, SO YA! I don’t waste food, okay? You all know about my “NO-WASTE” POLICY. Well, it’s in effect, ALWAYS!
Oh & if all these beautz ingredients weren’t enough to MAKE YOU GO GREEN, guess what I seasoned her with? ‘DAT CHILI-LIME DRESSING I WHIPPED UP YESTERDAY MORNING, YA! HER! & WOAH, just WOAH!! I honestly have NO. MORE. WORDS. The dressing PAIRS EFFING PERFECTLY WITH MY CHOICE OF GREEN VEGGIES – & I COULD LITERALLY TELL YOU MUNCHKINS THIS ALL DAY – but, but, but, THE BEST WAY FOR YOU TO GET ‘DAT EVIDENCE IS TO WHIP ‘ER UP HERSELF!
Ladies & gents, I present you with Kelly’s Spinach, Broiled Asparagus, Avocado & Chickpea Beauty-Bowl Tossed in a Chilli-Lime Dressing a.k.a. My-Ultimate-Take-on-Eat-Your-Greens-Oh-&-Time-to-Get-Over-‘Dat-Fear-of-‘Dem-Good-For-You-Fats!!
BEFORE WE GET INTO THE NITTY-GRITTY, I want to talk to you munchkins about something called THEM GOOD-FOR-YOU FATS!!! (Seeing as how this salad contains a WHOLE AVOCADO & some of you are probs wondering why on earth I would EAT SO MUCH FAT, RIGHT?).
For those of you who recognize the importance of said fats, GOOD FOR YOU. You can skip through this part (NO YOU CAN’T!!!! Read it anyways!! There’s always something new to learn, PROMISE!!!) & FOR THOSE OF YOU, who, LIKE ME, are or were SCARED-AF of said fats, LISTEN UP!!! You’re about to let yourself (& your tummy) take a turn for THE BEST!
Basically, if fat has always been positioned as your DIETARY ENEMY (like it was mine), IT IS NOW MY MISSION TO MAKE YOU & FATS BESTIES!!!! & let’s start out with avocados… because:
AVOCADOS = FATS = DELICIOUS = LOVE = GOOD-FOR-YOU DELICIOUS FATS THAT WILL MAKE YOU FALL IN LOVE.
MUNCHKINS, for years, literally, fat was a word we were URGED TO BANISH from our diets whenever possible. WE ALL GOT SUCKED IN TO THE LOW-FAT FOOD CRAZE. But, what we didn’t know was that the shift did NOT make us healthier! Yes, it helped us cut back on harmful fats, BUT IT ALSO MADE US CUT BACK ON HEALTHY FATS. And this, my friends, is a very bad thing!
OUR BODIES NEED FAT. Why, you ask?
In a nutshell:
Fats are a MAJOR SOURCE OF ENERGY.
Fats help you absorb vitamins & minerals.
Fats FILL YOU UP.
Fats have protective effects, ESPECIALLY FOR HEART-HEALTH/CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE.
Fats are NECESSARY TO BUILD CELL MEMBRANES.
Fats are essential for blood clotting, muscle movement & inflammation.
OF COURSE, as most of you probably know, SOME FATS ARE BETTER THAN OTHERS.
- Good fats include monounsaturated & polyunsaturated fats, whereas;
- Bad fats include industrial-made trans fats!
- THEN, THERE ARE SATURATED FATS, which I like to call the in-between ones! LET ME EXPLAIN.
The phrases “good-for-you” fats & “healthy fats” usually refer to the mono & poly fats – what makes them healthy is that, among other heart-health benefits, they also help reduce LDL cholesterol (BUH-BYE ARTERY CLOGGING) & benefit insulin & blood sugar levels (BUH-BYE TYPE 2 DIABETES)!!!!
Mono fats, in particular, are anti-inflammatory, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease & are JAM-PACKED-FULL of healthy nutrients!
Poly fats (A.K.A. OMEGA-3 & OMEGA-6 FATTY ACIDS) are essential for brain function & cell growth.
- Omega-3’s in particular are BENEFICIAL FOR EVERY ASPECT OF HEART HEALTH (& can mostly be found in fish, nuts & seeds!).
- Omega-6’s are found, rather, in certain plant-based oils! They work TOGETHER with omega-3’s to help lower LDL cholesterol, BUT are not AS ESSENTIAL AS omega-3’s in terms of overall health benefits!
Basically, omega-3 intake should ALWAYS be higher than omega-6 intake.
As for the UNHEALTHY, BAD-FOR-YOU FATS (the ones that make us scared of ALL FATS), they are referred to as TRANS FATS. And basically, YOU SHOULD ALWAYS AVOID THEM. THEY ARE LISTED ON NUTRITION LABELS AS “Partially hydrogenated oils”.
Most are FAKE-AF, A.K.A. ARTIFICIAL & raise your LDL cholesterol, while lowering your GOOD CHOLESTEROL THAT HELPS KEEP YOUR BLOOD VESSELS CLEAR (a.k.a. HDL cholesterol). Basically, these nasty fats have the opposite effect of the good fats – THEY WILL INCREASE YOUR RISK OF DEVELOPING HEART DISEASE & STROKE & ARE ASSOCIATED WITH A HIGHER RISK OF TYPE 2 DIABETES. THEY ARE ESSENTIALLY BEGGING YOU TO STAY AWAY & RUN!!!!!
LASTLY, THEM SATURATED FATS. These are a little more complex to understand… nutrition research had once shown that said fats were REALLY BAD FOR YOUR CHOLESTEROL. BUT, newer research indicates that they actually have a neutral effect… Dietary guidelines basically recommend limiting your intake & OBVS OPTING FOR MONO & POLY FATS INSTEAD. OF COURSE, many good-for-you foods rich in mono & poly fats will still contain some saturated fat, BUT, as long as it does not make up the majority of the fat content, it won’t negate or hinder the POSITIVE EFFECTS OF THE HEALTHIER FATS. So please, babies, DO NOT PANIC!
All this to say, IT’S TIME TO WIPE THAT FEAR OF FATS AWAY. It took A HELLLLL OF A LOT OF MIND WORK FOR ME TO DO THAT. Trust me. So, I totz understand if it isn’t going to be an overnight thing for you. BUT TAKE IT FROM ME, ever since I made the conscious & VERY, VERY, VERY INTELLIGENT DECISION to incorporate good-for-you-fats INTO EVERY SINGLE ONE OF MY SNACKS & MEALS, I cannot even begin to tell you the changes I feel in my body! I FEEL FULLER LONGER, ENERGIZED, HAPPY, FULL OF LIFE & I GET TO ENJOY MY MEALS EVEN MORE BECAUSE LEZ BE HONEST, FOODS HIGHER IN FAT = DELICIOUSSSSSSS!
OKAY, NOW THAT YOU MUNCHKINS LEARNED A THING OR TWO ABOUT FATS & are slowly warming up to the idea of incorporating MORE OF THESE BABES into your diets, let’s get back to the recipe. THE SALAD. DID YOU FORGET? I HOPE NOT! Here we go munchkins!!!!!
My loves, YOU WILL NEED:
- 200g of asparagus, ENDS TRIMMED;
- Seasoned with some freshly ground black pepper, organic Himalayan pink sea salt & a dash of organic extra-virgin olive oil & lemon juice!
- ¼ cup of fresh cilantro, CHOPPED;
- ¼ cup of fresh basil, CHOPPED;
- ¼ cup of fresh dill, CHOPPED;
- 1 AVOCADO (MY LOVE!!!!!!), DICED (Yes, babies, a WHOLE AVOCADO. She’s full of good-for-you fats. Yes, I used to be afraid of those fats too. BUT I’M SCREAMING TO THE WORLD THAT I AIN’T ANYMORE!!!! Here’s to hoping my
lil’ rant(HUGE RANT) above will help you get over ‘dat fear too!
- 220g of spinach;
- 200g of endives, SLICED LENGTHWISE;
- 1 15-oz. can of organic no-salt added chickpeas, RINSED & DRAINED;
- ¼ – 1/3 cup of my Clean-Eating Chilli-Lime dressing (RECIPE HERE);
- OH YOU KNOW, JUST SOME ‘MO freshly ground black pepper for garnish!
- OPTIONAL: Parm/Romano or nutritional yeast for garnish!! (OR A LIL’ BIT OF EACH OF ‘EM!!!).
OKAY, I TOLD YOU IT DON’T GET MORE GREEN!!!! The only non-green ingredient in this BABE OF A SALAD is the chickpeas & let’s be honest, those munchkins are so good, we’re ready to make an exception for ‘em, RIGHT? OH & the cheese ain’t green either & if it is, THROW IT OUT!!!!!
OK babies, now it’s time for me to tell you (how easy it is) TO WHIP THIS BABE UP! Y’all ready for ‘dis? HERE WE GO!!!!! (Honestly, the step-by-step isn’t really THAT NECESSARY), but I’ll do it anyway, cause I love you munchkins & want you babies to feel secure every step of the way of this recipe. SEE HOW AWESOME I AM? ACCEPTING THANK-YOUS STAT.
- Set your oven to LOW BROIL! Chop your asparagus stems & toss the beauties in a MEDIUM METAL MIXING BOWL with some sea salt, freshly ground black pepper & a dash of organic extra-virgin olive oil & lemon juice! TOSS TO COMBINE & MAKE SURE ALL ‘DAT BEAUTZ ASPARAGUS IS EVENLY COATED. Once coated, lay your asparagus on a parchment-lined baking sheet (BABES, AS ALWAYS, DO NOT PILE ‘EM!) & BROIL ON LOW FOR 6 MINUTES!
- Once ‘dat timer beeps, if your asparagus don’t look charred & browned, add another 1-2 minutes & adjust accordingly!!! BUT BABES, WATCH YOUR ASPARAGUS. IT CAN BURN EVER SO QUICKLY & THEN YOU’LL HAVE TO RESTART. Nobody likes wasting time. Right? SO DO IT RIGHT, THE FIRST TIME AROUND!!!!
- If your asparagus is ready after the first 6 minutes, set it aside to cool off!!!!!
- While ‘dat asparagus is broilin’, throw all your other veggies & chickpeas into a LARGE metal mixing bowl & TOSS TO COMBINE!
- Once the TIMER BEEPS & ANNOYS THE EFF OUTTA YOU AGAIN, set the asparagus aside to cool off (if you broiled it a second time) & then CHOP IT UP INTO 1-2 inch-sized pieces! THROW IT INTO YOUR VEGGIE/CHICKPEA MIX & TOSS AGAIN TO COMBINE!
- If you didn’t already do so (AND YOU SHOULD HAVE BECAUSE THE RECIPE HAS BEEN ON THE BLOG SINCE YESTERDAY MORNING), WHIP UP, I mean, WHISK UP, my Homemade Clean-Eating Chilli-Lime Dressing!!!
- POUR ‘DAT BEAUTIFUL DRESSING ALL OVER YOUR SALAD & MIX THE EFF OUT OF IT. Make sure all ‘dem greens (& chickpeas!!!) are evenly SMOTHERED in the babe.
- Garnish her with some ‘mo freshly ground black peppa, SOME CHEEEEESE (IF YOU WISH! WHY WOULDN’T YOU THOUGH?) & serve IMMMMMMEDIATELY (You wouldn’t be able to resist doing so ANYWAY!);
- DEVOUR, DEVOUR & DEVOUR SOME ‘MO! (Somehow, your bowl is already empty. OH WELL – NEXT TIME, MAKE A BIGGER SALAD!).
OH & FOOD PORN!!!!
ENJOY BABIES!!! <3 XOXO!